In no other city in the world, but New York City, could one piece together a sustainable living.
Reason #1: The majority of people who offer work in New York City, understand the cost of paying the basics of city living, i.e. rent, food, Con Edison, Time Warner Cable, and public transportation. And those who don't, like the ones who extend "$8/hr for a bi-lingual, childcare giver holding a valid Driver's License and a Bachelor's Degree in Special Education" or "lunch for three days, to a P.A. with technical know-how of camera, audio and set experience gained from over 5 years of well-paid jobs" on craiglist are bluntly and publicly berated for all of the web world to see.
Reason #2: Most New Yorkers are in this city for a reason. And all have either escaped, overcome, achieved, sacrificed, and clawed their way here. Damned if they are going to allow something like the Rent Man stand in their way now!
Reason #3: Everything and anything is for sale in this city; and, conversely, someone is always in the market for everything. Clothes (especially with labels), cats (that may of may not eventually turn out to have ringworm), maps to the backdoors of old speakeasies; recorded 'live' (translation, illegally taped) DVDs; stilettos, Size Drag Queen (you do the math!). Even the oldest profession in the world is for sale on craiglist, albeit and apparently, cleverly veiled. Key Words: Young, Pretty, Female Roommate; Housemaid; Roommate to Share with Couple.
Insert final notes of that Frank Sinatra here!