Things I Realized I Resent About New York

by JessieAnne D'Amico


I'll admit I won't have spent much time living here when I leave; however, it didn't take me long to realize New York isn't where I'm supposed to be.  It took me even longer to realize that I'm ok with that.  As I'm sitting alone in my "very own" 342 square feet listening to Kenny Chesney (something I'm going to pretend I haven't done since 2006) I find I'm glad I've shifted into the person I am today.  I've become someone who values happiness over the idea of status and affirmation in my success. That being said, I look at the city of New York in a much different lens than I did from 500 miles and two years away.  New York was always Joan Didion (whom I let myself forget also left New York, albeit after a longer trial), The Devil Wears Prada, the skyline, Sex and the City, The Chelsea Hotel, Valley of the Dolls, The Bell Jar.  It still is those things from an objective point of view but if being here has taught me one thing, it's that New York doesn't lend these images of itself to those sucked within its borders.  Granted, there are parts of the city that do lend itself to a fairy tale if you close your eyes tight enough and turn your headphones up high enough.  Then again, the fairy tale of clicking my heels in ruby slippers three times would come true too if I got a plane ticket at the same time. I found myself on dual ends of an inner debate a few weeks ago even though my heart was clear and my head following suit.  This internal debate lead to what most of mine do, a scribbled list on whatever paper I could find and an array of pens and pencils; a new one beginning where it's predecessor began to visibly drift.  I do have to say I wish I could write by hand here because my frenzied cursive-print hybrid really compliments my uncharacteristically haphazard grammar (going for authenticity here) to emphasize the effect of what this city has done to my already millennial-style ADD brain.

Things I Resent About New York, A Running List... 

  • Construction is always going on, and not in a cute "we're getting new neighbors way," I mean in a "we work 24/7 just to wake you up at 3 am" way.  Always within earshot of my window
  • Homeless people and street performers yelling at me
  • Everyone else yelling at me
  • Everyone else yelling at the people who aren't yelling at me
  • Paying $12 for a gin & tonic (also: acting as if $12 for a gin & tonic isn't literal robbery)
  • Pretending not to see the man taking his pants off in front of me on the subway
  • My apartment always being hot even when it's been 40 degrees for two days
  • The man making my hot dog in Gray's Papaya singing Heartache Tonight (See The Big Lebowski Eagles line)
  • Even men that hit on me probably aren't going to buy me a drink (multiple men have asked to put their own drink on my tab, which, like kudos for gender equality but also...bye)
  • The mouse I KNOW I'm cohabiting with won't show himself again sending me into a whirling paranoia  
  • Pretending to fully understand the subway without Google Maps
  • Always feeling dirty even five minutes after showering
  • Knowing someone on my hall is smoking weed every time they do because the smell permeates my door
  • Always feeling rushed
  • Businessmen.
  • Suits
  • The lack of talent in day-drinking
  • *No bonfires
  • *No porches (unless your security deposit included your first born and the blood of a virgin, in which case it's still no Carolina front porch I promise)
  • Not being able to see stars
  • Not knowing the bartender, anywhere
  • Not knowing who is going to be working at almost any given bar/restaurant/coffee shop at any given time
  • Not knowing where your friends are by seeing their car and or bike in the parking lot or driveway 
  • This laundry situation
  • Listening to the bullshit businessmen talk about over lunch
  • The accessibility to everything (you'd think it'd be nice, it's too much)
  • *Not being able to drive around in the middle of the night
  • Knowing that everything I do and say can be heard from my hallway
  • Not even having room for a microwave
  • My doorman knowing when my friends and I come home drunk
  • Everyone commenting on my Facebook pictures to tell me how "New York" I look
  • Coworkers asking what I'm paying for rent then acting like it's ludicrous like they don't live here too
  • Dragging the floor fan to the bathroom just so I don't have a heat stroke while cleaning
  • (Literally) running into people
  • Knowing people here can't relate to the Kenny Chesney songs I'm listening to
  • Bugs
  • Old men - actually any men- and their comments on my clothing (be it sweatpants or an evening gown)
  • Hearing people say "I really never leave Manhattan"
  • Taking a cab home from work because I got out late and have no idea when the next train is coming
  • Listening to people complain about New York but not leaving
  • Actually having to lock my door
  • Constant need/temptation to spend money
  • The subway
  • Standing in a line at Trader Joe's that wraps the entire store
  • Low standards for BBQ 
  • Feeling like you haven't taken a deep breath since the last time you were outside of the city
  • Not being able to be barefoot anywhere but my apartment
  • Having to put my one pot and one pan on the floor to do other dishes and have room to put the drying rack over the stove
  • Never being alone
  • No one takes out headphones to talk to cashiers, doormen, people, etc
  • The woman in front of me at Duane Reade was a dollar short and she and the cashier seemed shocked when I gave her a dollar  
  • Constant intrusive noise
  • Always feeling rushed
  • Crying to my playlist of different covers of "Carolina in my Mind" on my way to work

 

*Basically things I miss about home