Stage six: The coming to terms stage
Where you’re living: Old Fourth Ward. Definitely not Ponce City Market -- that money is gone.
Where you’re going out: Eats, The Dwarf House, The Albert, The Majestic Diner, Landmark Diner, maybe the new Kroger that has the bar.
Your mantra: “Long hair don’t care”
The only thing left to do with your life is eat until you feel no pain. Atlanta tricked you, but it’s OK, because that’s life. You see all the pretty people who have good jobs, and even though your job is good, it should be… better. You should have that Brookhaven condo you deserve, but you don’t. You vape now. You find yourself drinking a lot of high-ABV IPAs, and you’re growing a pretty sarcastic beard, which weirds out all your friends because you can't actually grow a full beard. You have not a care in the world. The illusion has been shattered. Atlanta is not New York, LA, Chicago, DC, San Francisco, Miami, Austin, Portland, or even Cleveland. It’s a sexier Nashville with seemingly better people. Maybe they aren’t so bad. Maybe you needed to find the deeper meaning of ATL, which is that the ATL so many people celebrate doesn’t exist. Maybe your dream had to die in order to be reborn? Maybe you need another IPA.