Then, while I was in the interview, I actually got my first-ever call from a temp agency! I called them back and they offered me a job reading student essays for the SAT Corporation for $16/hour. (Total take: $1920 over three weeks.) That starts on May 1st, if I haven't been hired by Dell by then.
Then I got home and found my freelance crossword-editing job waiting for me. That puts me a mere fifty hours of work (and sixty days of waiting) away from $1000!
So the good news is, my odds of employment suddenly look probable. The bad news is, none of them will pay me $750 in rent money before the rent money is actually due. But I think I can hold off paying for a little while if I've got actual provable income.
Whew! The moment I get actual consistent money, and pay back everyone I owe money to, I become an honest-to-god New Yorker. I guess the next step is to find a favorite deli.