Pretentious? I've never heard anyone considering writing bklyn as opposed to brooklyn as being pretentious. So, I don't know how long it takes.
I've lived in Bklyn basically my whole life. I don't even think about writing it out and more than I think about writing out NYC.
The article was referring to NYC (assuming as I didn't read the article). And yes, everything north of the Bronx (including Westchester) is upstate. Long Island (Nassau and Suffolk) obviously are not "upstate".
I remember when living in bklyn was most definitely not considered "pretentious."
Don't know where you got the idea that I considered upstate as irrelevant. (I did think it was irrelevant as far as the article was concerned. I was focused on NYC itself.)
Can one commute from Westchester, Rockland, NJ, Pennsylvania, Connecticut. Yes. Plenty do