The way the French will critically discuss a meal while eating it is similar to the way New Yorkers will complain about everything wrong with the city while loving it!
If you do not live in Manhattan you are known as “bridge and tunnel” and it is meant derogatory
Manhattan is an island built on solid rock and landfill
Do not live on an block with a Fire house or Ambulance station or be warned of ridiculous sleep hours.
You pay for what neighborhood you live in, not what kind of apartment you live in.
“Fuhgettaboutit” is pretty much only said in Brooklyn
“Downtown” means below 14th Street on Manhattan
People from Manhattan do not have a NY accent; Long Islanders and Jerseyites do.
People here care more about how you look in your clothes than out of them (as opposed to L.A. or Miami). Dress to impress, baby!
The only time New York city is quiet: At night during a snow storm
You’re going to spend more than you think here
That head-turner you just saw? – there are a million more straight ahead. Keep walking.
Wearing stilettos to the Meatpacking District clubs/bars, expect to get caught and teeter around in the cobblestone streets at least once every time you go.
When you meet someone out at night, one of the first questions you should ask them to get a sense of how this person is, is what part of town he hangs out in. It will tell a lot about style, substance and sexuality.
Get the most out of your neighborhood but get out to all other boughs as well to see all of New York.
Subway transportation to and from Queens while it is raining is a figment of your imagination
Have a good idea of how to get where you’re going when you hop in a cab. Tell them the streets or direction you want to go even.
Forget dining in touristy areas (times square mainly) and avoid the chain restaurants, there are 100 times better food at a corner deli than at TGI Fridays.
The city is not handicapped friendly.
Good customer service is rare; cherish it and tip accordingly
NYC is no longer such a tough place that the simple act of living here gives you instant cred as a badass.
Shopping at your average bodega is like shopping at a gas station – do it if you have to, or you need one or two last minute items. Get used to getting your produce from the produce guy, your meat from the butcher, your fish from the fish monger, your cheese from a cheese shop, your pasta from an Italian shop, your cosmetics and drugs from the drug store, and so on.
It’s 6th Avenue, not Avenue of the Americas. Don’t use the latter or cabbies and locals will assume you’re a tourist.
70% of the restaurants in Brooklyn (and random places in Manhattan) are cash-only (but there’s usually a bodega with ATM close by; bring cash when you go out!)
Refills are not free
There are no public bathrooms. Aside from being a customer of some restaurant, bar or coffee shop, find a local Hotel or larger department store for a pit stop.
Do not bring your car. Though our subway system does have its issues, it’s one of the best in the world – you can get anywhere in the city with public transport. Learn the bus system, it’s invaluable on the weekends.
There are endless amounts of activities, organizations, cultural venues, events, bars etc. You should not be bored ever.
Slices of pizza are meant to be folded.
Construction is everywhere all the time as is scaffolding and the scaffolding exists sometimes for no apparent reason.
Get used to other people doing your laundry: drop off wash and fold laundry service is fantastic (but expensive).
You’ll end up incorporating 1 or more Yiddish words in your everyday conversation and not realize it until a friend from back home asks you what “schlep” means.
Feeling like a newbie and staring at the subway map is better than getting lost for an hour or taking the express line when you should have just stayed local.
Master the art that is “pre-walking” – plan out which subway car is closest to the exit at your stop. While you’re waiting, you walk down the platform to the right car so that you don’t have any wasted steps at the other end.
The kids selling candy on the subway are not on a basketball team raising money; but at least they aren’t selling drugs.
Don’t ever stop in the stairwell, at the top or bottom of the stairs for a subway entrance/exit.
Tipping in restaurants: Cash is best. Give at least 15% no matter what (servers typically get paid on tips alone) – If you don’t like the service, tell them and or the manager before you leave. Keeping up with inflation it’s usually 18-20% now, and for parties of 5 or more tip at least 18%.
Cabs cannot refuse rides to boroughs (Queens, Brooklyn, S.I., Bronx); you must pay the tolls. Report them if they refuse.
Stay to the right when you walk down the street (DO NOT take up the whole sidewalk with your fat ass, there are other people in the city that “commute” too). Stand on the right when on the escalator and walk by on the left.
Master the art of fast walking while dodging the slower lost/roaming tourists.
Shopping on 5th avenue around Christmas is the worst idea. Ever.
Expect to build an extensive booger collection as living here guarantees more junk caught up in the nose than living pre-NYC
Expect to get sick 5 times more than anywhere else, unless you learn to wash your hands more frequently.
With all the hand washing and dry winters, moisturize, moisturize and moisturize.
Don’t pick up “females” prostitutes between 14th and 30th Streets on the Westside.
That isn’t mud on your shoe. Ever.
In the summer it’s not raining on a clear day; the air conditioner condensation will leak on you if you walk too close to the buildings.
Learn the cabbie lights: when the number on top is lit up – it’s empty, when it’s not – someone is in there, and when the whole thing is on – it’s off duty (they may negotiate your ride though)
When a subway car is significantly emptier during rush hour than all the others, it’s for one of three reasons: There is a smelly bum stinking up the place, an irate psycho harassing passengers or the AC is broken.
5 dollars for a pint of domestic beer is totally reasonable.
Existing the subway, you can know what direction to head by the corner you are standing on and direction you exit the subway from, by paying attention to the SW-NW-SE-NE directional signs near the exits.
You still have to look both ways when crossing a 1-way street – watch out for delivery or messenger bikers. They will take you out.
Even numbered streets go east, the odd numbered ones go west. For numbered streets, 20 blocks = 1 mile. For the avenues, a “short” avenue block = 2 street blocks, and a “long” avenue block = 4 street blocks. “Short” blocks include Fifth Ave to Madison, Mad to Park, Park to Lex, and Lex to Third. The rest are “long”.
If a restaurant or store special is too good to be true, it probably is.
Stores will go out of business or have 60% off this week sales for years. Don’t believe the hype.
A $37+ steak in a Manhattan steak house doesn’t not come with a side.
Happy hours do exist on Saturdays. Ask knowledgeable NY’ers to know where.
A MP3 player and a good playlist is a great soundtrack for moving around the city. Bring one regardless of business or personal agendas.
It’s totally acceptable to make plans to meet someone somewhere at 1 am, “just when it’s starting to get a little busy”.
Dinner starts anytime after 8 pm or when happy hour ends.
Pre-war means your building was built before World War II
Everything in Manhattan has a Manhattan tax of at least $1.00 more than the rest of NYC and several more dollars than outside NY.
Walking 10 (street) blocks is not a lot, in fact if your subway stop is less than two stops, then walk it.
People you don’t want to talk to you, won’t if you don’t look at them.
People you WANT to talk to you won’t (automatically or with out bringing your A game).
If you wear flip flops expect to have sickly gross feet within the hour of walking this city.
Do not turn on a Red light in the City – it’s illegal and you could hit a pedestrian.
Don’t expect people to have manners but encourage others to have them by using proper manners yourself. Contrary to believe NYers are cordial people when they want to be.
No matter how expensive consumer goods are in the city, there are always cheaper alternatives if you’re willing to look and hunt them down (groceries in Chinatown, furniture in jersey etc.)
9th Ave becomes Columbus, 10th Ave becomes Amsterdam, and 11th becomes West End – very useful when traveling by cab between Hell’s Kitchen and the UWS.
Look up once in a while, there’s some great architecture here.