Ah, New York City. The wonderful, fairy-tale, fantasy town where folks from all walks of life stroll hand in hand down the streets harmonizing to Fiddler on the Roof and sipping coffee as they write screenplays by the fireplace, looking up occasionally out the window as the snow falls. A place where no dream is out of reach.
Well, kind of. I journeyed to this magical city with my mom and little brother last weekend. It was an incredible, hilarious trip, but, by our last day, I decided that I hate all human beings and if I never have to be around another person for the rest of my life, that’d be fine. Long story short, NYC is a tad crowded. And there was no snow.
While on the trip, I noted some do’s and don’t’s (all of which we definitely did) that I think might be helpful for other travelers who plan to visit New York – specifically Texans. So, here are some guidelines for all y’all who want to fit in and not be laughed out of the Big Apple.
- Locals evidently don’t refer to New York as the “Big Apple.” No matter how many Red Deliciously brilliant apple puns you make.
- You probably shouldn’t say “this is where we die” each time you cross the street. Cool and hip New Yorkers don’t necessarily wait for that little man signal to start walking. And if you choose to be one of these rebellious jaywalkers, at least act like you belong. But remember, while you may decide to be one of those ballsy rule-breakers, your mom will not. Running across the street and then promptly turning around to laugh and wave at her while she patiently waits alone on the curb will not get old.
- Don’t smile at people, I guess. They’ll think you’re trying to sell them something, or that you’re crazy. I have a habit of staring at people until they meet my glance and then I smile at them in the hopes that they will feel pressured to smile back at me. It’s practically a social experiment. I’m not typically trying to sell anything, but the fact that I do this probably does mean I’m crazy, so.
- Shopping is both depressing and uplifting. This isn’t limited to New York. And it’s neither a do nor a don’t. Just making an observation.
- Do accept that Bloomingdales is terribly overwhelming. Just dig deep within yourself, pull out that inner fake confidence, walk tall, and look like you know what you’re doing until a sales person asks if you’re looking for the bathroom. Look them in the eye and proudly say “yes I am” because they called your bluff.
- This is a big one. Don’t test your mom’s sense of awareness by subtly tugging on her purse from behind. She’ll have a panic attack right there in the subway. She doesn’t need your help – she’s been preparing for this city her whole life.
- Someone will eventually want to discuss the Big 12 with you. Don’t give up the search. It’s as if New Yorkers have other, more important, non-football related things to worry about and that’s unacceptable. Make it your mission to fix that.
- Do spew Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt quotes everywhere you go. Especially when you’re in Times Square – where New Yorkers shop!
- Don’t aggressively attack Gary Patterson’s character in a Broadway theatre because there will inevitably be a TCU grad sitting right in front of you seeing Book of Mormon that night too. And she’ll turn around and chew you out. And you can’t hide your identity because you’ve already made far too many Book of Mooreman jokes.
- Do make sure to observe what other people in the restaurant are ordering and notice how they’re all sharing plates and that no one actually ordered their own meal before you order. You may be in a traditional family-style Chinese restaurant and you’ll each eat yourself into an actual food coma. Man, what a meal(s) though.
- Don’t order a slice of cake at an authentic Italian restaurant because they will bring you an entire cake. How about just don’t go to New York restaurants with my family. Although you would apparently be missing out on a lot of cake.
- Do waste a lot of money on NBC merchandise. Buy those Fallon pajama bottoms! Make that Dunder Mifflin coffee mug yours! One could argue that you could wait until later and order that stuff online for a lower price, but that’s simply not the same. I like to think I’m purchasing my 30 Rock shot glass directly from Tina Fey herself. And then afterward we’ll take a shot together. And who knows, maybe after that she’ll suggest we go get manicures and perhaps get a dog together. That didn’t happen. But the chance of it happening is greater in the NBC gift shop than online at my house, ok?
I hope these tips are helpful. They may be too specific to my family to be considered universal, but I think you get the gist. My main point is do take spontaneous weekend trips with your family, especially if they’re loud and weird and don’t fit in anywhere. Oh, also, invest in comfortable shoes.