A follower of my blog sent me this article by Jen Glantz today, so I decided I would use her list to see how many rookie mistakes I actually made when I first moved to NYC.
1. Paying more than $1 for a slice of pizza.
Verdict: Guilty! I prefer good pizza.
2. Entering the subway station going downtown when you need to go uptown.
Verdict: Guilty! I still do this about once a year.
3. Riding that wrong direction train for a handful of stops before finalizing realizing you’re approaching Pelham Bay Park when you were trying to get to Houston Street.
Verdict: Guilty! It’s happened recently even after all of these years.
4. Pronouncing Houston like the city in Texas. Around here, they say “hows-ten.”
Verdict: Guilty! I remember the exact moment, and it was really embarrassing.
5. Paying an astronomical broker’s fee for an apartment you could have probably found on your own.
Verdict: Guilty! My roomie and I were hitting a dead-end without jobs and a credit issue. It was a necessary fee.
6. Thinking you can negotiate: with your broker, your landlord, the lady on the other end of your Time Warner phone call.
Verdict: Guilty! I did try to negotiate with my landlord over a sublease situation, but it went terribly wrong.
7. Shopping for groceries anywhere other than Trader Joe’s or Fairway.
Verdict: Guilty! When I first moved here I only shopped at Key Foods. I haven’t been to Trader Joe’s in quite some time, but I do get most of my gluten-free products at Fairway.
8. Not having a Seamless app on your phone during the winter when your options are either to throw on every item of clothing you have and brace the frigid outdoors to get some grub, or starve.
Verdict: Not Guilty! This Seamless shit wasn’t around back in my day. We had to call Mike’s Diner in Astoria.
9. Making eye contact with strangers on the subway. Locking eyes with someone, here, is ground for them to invade your personal space.
Verdict: Not guilty! I only stare at people who were already staring at me.
10. Thinking you have impeccable balance and not holding on while riding the subway. This is how you’ll invade someone else’s personal space.
Verdict: Not Guilty! I have never intentionally tried this.
11. Telling yourself that this city has way too many people and tourists that you’ll never rub elbows with someone you know.
Verdict: Guilty! I learned real fast that I would run into tourists that I know, and people I vowed that I would never want to see again.
12. Becoming a floozy with your standards when it comes to how close you hold on to your wallet and your phone.
Verdict: Not guilty! I never had standards to begin with!
13. Underestimating your commute.
Verdict: Guilty! That’s why I always give myself at least an hour to get anywhere.
14. Wearing heels — or uncomfortable shoes — to go out.
Verdict: Guilty! This is why I don’t own heels anymore.
15. Going to Times Square for New Year’s Eve. Or, ever.
Verdict: Guilty! I used to work there, so I really couldn’t avoid it. I worked my first NYE in the city overlooking Times Square, and got to see the ball drop in person. I am guilty as charged, but it worked out in my favor. I had plenty to drink, a bathroom at my disposal, and I don’t EVER have to do it again.
16. Giving all your money away to anyone who asks.
Verdict: Not Guilty! The first person I gave money to was a Mexican man who brought a large cart on the subway that he used for a 5 minute magic show complete with a bird and a rabbit. He set the bar really high for my monetary giving’s.
17. Believing in something called a savings account.
Verdict: Guilty! I didn’t start saving until I started with a company that gave me a 401K option, which was my third year in the city.
18. Not asking for directions.
Verdict: Not Guilty! I ALWAYS ask for directions. My father taught me this lesson by his own actions.
19. Thinking you’ll never adapt to the noise.
Verdict: Not Guilty! I grew up in a city, so I guess I expected it.
20. That you’ll be in this “I LOVE NYC” honeymoon phase forever.
Verdict: Guilty! I am still in love with it, but just like a committed relationship, it’s not always wine and roses.
Total tally: 65% GUILTY!