6 THINGS I'LL NEVER FORGIVE NEW YORK FOR—And All the Places Here That Help Me Preserve My Peace.
Updated: May 2
Between the amazing job opportunities and the premium-priced rent, I can’t imagine a better or worse city to reside in. New York is by far the most dynamic place I’ve ever lived. The burrows, the entertainment, and the people are all so diverse. I love the fact that I can experience this type of multiplicity—especially coming from a state where things are the stark opposite. However, with all the things I love about New York, there’s bound to be some experiences I don’t particularly appreciate. I decided a while back that if I talk about the highs, I need to talk about the lows too. Transparency, sis! So below you’ll find me venting about the 5 things I will never forgive New York for.
Deromanticizing Romance - I think it’s safe to say that when I moved to NY I was ready to live my rendition of Carrie and Big’s dysfunctional yet witty romance (if you didn’t get this Sex and the City reference, please tap in!). With all the single ladies belting their own horror stories of New York men, I was ready to pull the plug before I even experienced it myself. However, I don’t want to become pessimistic, so I’m staying far away from “New York men suck” jargon. I guess I’ll blissfully—and maybe a little naively—go forth with open and unjaded arms.
Normalizing Body Odor - I was not raised using public transportation, so this is a new experience for me. As efficient as the transportation systems here are, I can’t say I will ever get used to being surrounded by a bunch of strangers every day and the odor that comes along with the 5 pm crowd. I mean really, will there ever be a world where body odor is normal?
8 months of Winter 4 Months of Summer? So Disrespectful - That’s not even a fair ratio. C’mon now. And New Yorkers try to act like this is okay...it’s not.
Direct & Aggressive Culture - Blame it on my southern charm blame it on whatever, but people can be so rude. And maybe I'm exaggerating a bit. I’ve certainly met kind people during my time here (shout out to y’all!). It’s not that people here are necessarily mean, they’re just much more direct. Connection and communication don’t come as fluidly as what I'm used to. But I try to stay polite; I will not let this city get me out of character!
Anesthetizing Homelessness – There’s so much to be grateful for if you go home to simple pleasures like a roof and a meal. Taking the subway and seeing the amount of people who don’t have these luxuries has made me 10 times more grateful for the areas in my life I sometimes deem "not good enough." Watching as people nonchalantly pass those less fortunate and choose not to recognize them makes me feel unsettled. Can you imagine how it makes them feel to have to beg for money or food? It’s dehumanizing to ignore people and pretend as if they don’t exist. The least we can do is to acknowledge them and politely decline your coins.
Arm-And-A-Leg-Rent – Whew chile. $1000 would get me my own room, kitchen, living room bathroom, in-house laundry, 40 acres, and a mule in Louisiana. Am I exaggerating a bit? Yes. But my point is that that same $1000 has gotten me one room in a three-bedroom apartment here in Brooklyn. It’s wild. The search for the perfect apartment in NYC taught me quickly that I wasn’t about to get everything I wanted in my dream home. So, unfortunately, the NYC housing struggle was the first time I ever settled.
Okay, I’ve always been taught the best way to follow up harsh news is with some sugar. So on to the goodness. I love experiences, I think they really do shape my world and change my perception of life. There were a few places that did this for me here in NYC. Below you’ll find all the spots that helped me combat that NYC newness in my first year!
1. 1803 NYC – With it’s Nola inspired décor, live jazz band, and Cajun brunch menu, 1803 had my heart at first bite! https://www.1803nyc.com/
2. Café on Ralph – This spot is near my home, has brilliant food and is black owned! Need I say more? https://www.yelp.com/biz/cafe-on-ralph-brooklyn-3
3. Church – New York is the home of Mega-churches, and I have visited my fair share of them. A good word on a Sunday is the best way to begin the week.
4. Brooklyn Museum – I love this place for so many reasons. https://www.brooklynmuseum.org/
5. Every Day People Parties – The fact that I never experienced one of these before New York is wild. Such a good time.
6. My “Real Life Old” & “Nola Bounce Party” playlists – There’s no other thing that makes me feel more like me than music. These two playlists will simultaneously have me wishing I were home and on a dance floor.
7. My Bedroom – I’m very excited about this one because it’s the first place I’ve decorated with my own taste & budget. And it bought me to realize just how minimal I can be.
Check out my home video up top to see the love and attention that was put into my new home.
Let me know your thoughts. What's something you're reluctant to say you dislike about the city you reside in?