Environs

Movin' On Up ... to DC's 17th Street

by Will Doig
Published on April 17, 2003, 12:00am | Comments

TOOK A WHOLE LOTTA TRYIN' but we made it to 17th Street! 2BR/2BA on 3rd floor of impeccably located bldg. Large windows, plenty of parking, stellar facilities for a culinary maestro. Funky furnishings and pleasingly lit. Occupants are prof. GM and SF w/ love for DC.

Adam Kinsinger is just pulling dinner out of the oven -- a pizza steaming with homemade dough, feta cheese, Roma tomatoes, chopped artichoke heart and extra virgin olive oil -- when his roommate, Caitlin Connolly, breezes in the door, exactly on time.

ADAM [In living room]: We were fantasizing at the time. Sitting around on a Sunday morning, isolated in the ghetto, contemplating what it would be like to live with the rest of civilization. Caitlin found this place. There were other people who wanted it. We said, "We'll write you a check right now." It wasn't going to clear, but we had 48 hours to get enough money into the account.

CAITLIN: In the meantime, we looked at lots of places that were horrible and scary and overpriced.

ADAM: This one place on 19th and Florida that was more expensive than ours had a sink like you'd find in a ceramics class, with the long, bent faucet and crust all over the sides. It was an industrial sink. They were like, "Can you move in right away?" It was right across from the Hinckley Hilton.

CAITLIN: We moved here from a huge house, so we had tons of furniture. We're big fans of refurbished furniture. My favorite thing about the apartment is the bookshelf.

ADAM: We built it.

CAITLIN: He's a little more butch than he lets on.

ADAM: It's actually very easy. We thought we'd be saving money by building it, but lumber is so expensive. And we installed the light fixture.

[In kitchen] When we moved in, the apartment had this circa 1950 ugly light fixture, so we put in this circa 2002 IKEA light fixture. I think IKEA is fine. If you need furniture and you want nice things, it's fine. Some people define their identity in different ways.

CAITLIN: And we're not here much, but that's kind of nice because then you appreciate it more when you're home.

ADAM: Yeah. Finding a good roommate is hard. You don't want to be sleeping with your roommate. Sex becomes a weapon. It's hard to find someone who you enjoy living with and who you're not sleeping with. We get along really well.

CAITLIN: Adam is a great chef.

ADAM: I love the kitchen. You can be social and productive at the same time.

CAITLIN: I think one of our neighbors is a chef too, at Equinox.

ADAM: Yeah, he wants to have one of those Around The World parties. Tequila in the Mexican room, vodka in the Russian room…

CAITLIN: I think D.C. attracts people who are interested in locations. The type of person who wants to live in L.A. and then live in Chicago and so on. I've been here for six years and there are a thousand different places I want to live, but D.C. is just so great.

ADAM: It's really comfortable. D.C. is like that moment after the alarm's gone off and you hit the snooze, and you're awake but you don't want to get out of bed. You know you have to move but you're just so comfortable where you are.

CAITLIN: And you have to put this in the article: I know that if you drive up Fifteenth Street at exactly thirty miles per hour, you don't have to brake at any of the lights. You think to yourself, I can do this and that Joe with Connecticut plates has no idea. It's this insider thing that I know, and I think to myself, do I want to share this with anyone?

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