1. Juice Generation taking over the neighborhood Tasti.
As in Tasti D-lite, God’s gift to ice cream-addicts and something all native New Yorkers were addicted to at one point in their lives. When Sex And The City featured Tasti D-lite in one of their episodes, we all felt a little more justified in our odd craving. Now, as fro-yo is kicked mercilessly to the side to make way for the new head honcho in town, cold-pressed juice, we’re seeing the slow demolition of NYC’s Tasti D-lites. It was a grim morning when I saw construction workers erect a Juice Generation sign where my neighborhood Tasti used to be.
2. A smiling human on the subway.
If I’m not trying to mentally figure out what, on my person, I could potentially fashion into a rape whistle if the occasion should call for it, then I’m utterly flummoxed. Could it be that man’s armpit, resting on the nape of your neck that you find so joyful? The panhandlers? Or perhaps it’s the couple over in the corner, romantically dry humping…? You tell me.
3. People repping Brooklyn and New York teams because they think it looks cool.
I root for the New York teams because that’s where I’m from — what excuse does your Oregon or Alaskan ass have? If you’re a genuine sports fan: fine, I can’t argue with that one. But if you’re clearly repping a Brooklyn Nets hat or a New York Mets baseball jersey because you think it looks cool, then it’s time you cease this madness.
4. The Sex And The City Movie.
It’s hard to even reference Sex And The City now because that god-awful movie has given it such a bad rep. As Native New Yorkers, we remember the golden years of Big, Aiden, Burger, scrunchies, nameplate necklaces, engagement ring around the neck, Skipper, Richard and the elusive club BED. At what point were the writers like, “Yes. And THEN we’ll have Charlotte shit her pants. It’ll be fabulous!”?
P.S. I realize there was a second Sex And The City movie and I am deliberately not acknowledging it in hopes that it’ll just go away.
5. Someone who doesn’t know how to hail a cab.
I’m literally cringing right now just thinking about this. For God’s sake, how hard is it? Middle light on: you good; no light on: taken; side lights on: off-duty. Watching someone trying to hail a cab and then act all indignant when the blatantly occupied cab drives by them is like staring at an eclipse. No one wants to acknowledge your pitiful presence, which means no one is going to tell you that you’re doing it all wrong either.
6. People obsessing over chain restaurants.
I get that you grew up in a town where the spot that was most poppin’ was 7-11, and that you probably developed a slurpee addiction as a result, but this is New York City. If it’s the slurpee you’re craving, there are a million other local and non-chain spots that can satiate your thirst. This isn’t your small town and that 7-11 is NOT clean.
7. People fighting to give street directions.
There’s this unwritten, latent rivalry going on amongst New York City transplants: who is most familiar with the city? Or, put differently: who could easily pass for a native New Yorker? It manifests itself when someone asks a group of transplants for directions; given the opportunity to prove their lodgings, they all fight to give the lost tourist the best route, and it hurts to watch.
8. People who abide by the “Don’t Walk” signs.
Ah, the confused-looking pedestrian who stands idly by the curb with nary a car in sight, waiting for that white-lit walking man to give him the O.K. A sad, weak fellow, who is doubtless running late.
9. Tourists using MTA maps to obstruct their view.
To this day, I’m confident that I could read Japanese — a language I don’t know a lick of — better than I could read an MTA map. The thing makes no actual sense — nothing depicted on there reflects reality. All native New Yorkers know this, and so Hopstop the shit out of their day. Transplants don’t; they carry around the large paper MTA maps, without an eye on where they’re going, typically blocking the entranceway to the Q at 14th street or some other extremely populated line.
10. People taking photos in Times Square.
For native New Yorkers, Times Square is never a destination. Should we have the misfortune of finding ourselves there I assure you it’s only as a means to get somewhere else — to our final destination. In Times Square we need a clear path ahead; we need to get in and out, always keeping an eye on freedom up ahead lest we lose our cool and start seizing.
11. People who don’t know how to walk.
Everyone’s always all “New yorkers are in such a rush to get nowhere!” When, in reality, I probably have a very important gynecologist appointment I’m trying to make. But why’s that your business anyway, hmmm? As a transplant you should be graciously stepping aside to let your native cohorts pass you by — you moved to our city, you yield to us.
The next time you overhear little Bobby asking his dad why that homeless man is talking to himself you can tell little Bobby it’s because of boys like him — boys who are new to New York and must survey the height of every building in sight before crossing the street. There’s a reason we’re all so “crazy,” and that reason is you, dear sluggish tourist.
12. Someone getting swindled by a cab driver.
There’s no sadder sight for a native New Yorker to witness than a transplant who has no clue of their surroundings — lacking even the ability to deduce that, since you just went from 86th street to 85th, 84th, and then 83rd, that the next street is probably 82nd — get swindled by a cab driver. It’s past the point of you not knowing your way around NYC. The man just circled central park 12 times; are you blind?
13. Transplants saying they have “basically lived here forever.”
It’s wonderful that you spent all of college and those four post-college years here, but that makes eight years total. And eight years isn’t “basically forever.” It’s eight years.
14. People interacting with the “wildlife.”
Hey, here’s some food for thought: this is real life, not a Wes Anderson movie. And those pigeons? Walking lupus. A mere glance a those people in Washington Square Park who shower themselves with bird food and let the pigeons flock to them sends shivers down my spine.