On November 1st, 1959, the population of New York City was 8,042,783. If you laid all these people end to end, figuring an average height of five feet six and a half inches, they would reach from Times Square to the outskirts of Karachi, Pakistan. I know facts like this because I work for an insurance company: Consolidated Life of New York. We’re one of the top five companies in the country. Our home office has 31,259 employees, which is more than the entire population of Natchez, Mississippi. I work on the 19th floor: Ordinary Policy Department – Premium Accounting Division – Section W – desk number 861. My name is C. C. Baxter. C. for Calvin, C. for Clifford, however most people call me “Bud”. I’ve been with Consolidated for three years and ten months and my take home pay is $94.70 a week. The hours in our department are 8:50 to 5:20. They’re staggered by floors, so that sixteen elevators can handle the 31,259 employees without a serious traffic jam. As for myself, I very often stay on at the office and work for an extra hour or two, especially when the weather is bad. It’s not that I’m overly ambitious, it’s just a way of killing time until it’s all right for me to go home. You see, I have this little problem with my apartment… I live in the West 60s, just half a block from Central Park. My rent is $85 dollars a month. It used to be $80 until last July when Mrs. Lieberman, the landlady, put in a second-hand air conditioning unit. It’s a real nice apartment, nothing fancy, but kind of cozy. Just right for a bachelor. The only problem is, I can’t always get in when I want to.
The Apartment, C.C. “Bud” Baxter