July 26, 2013

How to: Survive NYC

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Like many of my fellow Cornellians, I have packed my bags and moved to NYC for the summer to pursue the dream that is the unpaid internship (read: indentured servitude). I love everything about it — the nonexistent paycheck, the thrill of standing at the copy machine so long that I might have damaged my ovaries (because isn’t a copy machine essentially the same thing as a microwave?), the joy you feel when a staff member knows your name. And on top of all of this, you get to live in the city that never sleeps on a budget that doesn’t exist! So, to all those guys and gals out there who are also living the dream, I’ve created a simple how-to guide for all the New York-isms that you may be unaware of, e.g. even though Buddy the Elf made it look cool and sanitary, eating gum off of a street lamp post will get you a lot of looks and a frisking from the police.

How to: Ride the subway

New York City has one of the greatest transit systems in the world, and you have the pleasure of benefitting from its reliability, cleanliness and lack of crazies. There is a certain etiquette when riding the subway, which I have learned through research conducted for this blog. First of all, people LOVE to strike up random conversations. They are especially thrilled to discuss your most recent gynecologist appointment, so be sure to give them plenty of details. Also, the poles are there for stability, but they have many other uses too! Next time you’re on the L, try out your most recent stripper routine or bulk up those triceps by performing pull-ups on the bar! (Disclaimer: the poles may or may not be able to support your body weight, but you’ll never know until you try!)

A polite warning: when there are not enough seats, it is not kosher to sit on a stranger’s lap, no matter how much he looks like Santa.

But really, please just give your seat to pregnant ladies and old people.

How to: Live on a budget

There are a lot of free, awesome things to do in NYC. However, I have discovered (through research conducted for this blog) several pastimes where you can actually turn a profit! So, rather than going to see Jimmy Fallon or the MOMA for zero dollars, why not try out these fun ideas? Instead of practicing your kazoo in the comfort of your apartment, conduct your daily rehearsals in Union Square. Don’t forget your sparkly top hat so you can accept donations from adoring fans! Looking for a good way to tour Times Square while also getting money to feed your gibbon? You may have heard of the Naked Cowboy or Naked Indian (essentially, these are people who charge money for you to take pictures with them and their sorta-perfect bodies). All you need to do is create a character, take off your clothes and walk around Times Square! I have found great success with Naked Sacagawea and Naked Hillary Clinton. For the record, Naked Martin Luther King is not a hit and you may or not may not receive a few death threats. But, once you start charging for all death threats, you are back on top again!

How to: Find a date

New York has over 8 million residents. One of them must be willing to go on a date with you, right? In my experience, there are at least three people who fall into that category. Although many people are turning to the Internet to find their next flame, I prefer to meet men (and women) the organic way: I put on a high pair of heels, bright red lipstick, stand on the corner of a busy street and strut my stuff! Soon enough, I’m getting catcalls from homeless people and cats alike! Once a priest gave me a sandwich, which in my book counts as a hot date with a respectable man. And my mom says she isn’t proud of me! All you need to do is be bold and your romantic opportunities will grow and blossom! But if you consider yourself more of an introvert, J-date is always an option.

Follow my advice, chickies, and you will make the most out of your NYC experience (and be arrested ~2.5 times). I hope that you take some of this wisdom with you when you head back to the rolling hills of Ithaca in August. Perhaps I will see a naked Andrew Dickson White on Ho Plaza? (That’s part of my next entry, “How-to convince people to go to Cornell.”)

Until then, keep up the good work and remember how fortunate you are! Nothing could prepare you more for professional success than being able to include “can staple over 100 sheets of paper together” on your resume.

Original Author: Claire Stack