Big Ass Apple

Holy crap I'm in New York. And not just New York, Midtown Manhattan, Times Square baby! My company decided they needed more people up in NY for some testing so they were very kind in appropriating the funds to fly and house me in the city that never sleeps.


For those that have never been, let me start off by saying, you just have no idea. It's so big and so loud and so alive. I don't care where you're from, you will just overwhelmed by the sheer size of it. (With apologies for those random readers from Tokyo, maybe).

Coming from Texas, big means spread out over several, sometimes, dozens of miles. Yeah there's 4 million people in Houston, but Houston has the same area as Rhode Island. (Don't check on that, I'm pretty sure it's poetic license.) Meanwhile you have twice, three times that number living or working in an area 5 miles wide and 15 miles long. Just unimaginable. There's no grass, no dirt, no trees. It's just concrete and steel and people. Ok, well you get the idea, it's big. Moving on.

I haven't been able to do a whole lot, my job's kept me pretty busy, but in just wondering around you see things that for someone's whole life, sometimes, you only see in movies or TV. Studio 1A, Radio City Music Hall, Time Life Building, Hello Deli, the CBS Studios, the Ed Sullivan Theater, Rockefeller Plaza. This is all within 10 blocks. I haven't even been to the ESB or Ground Zero/Freedom Tower site, or up to Central Park, or the Met, or Yankee Stadium, or the Garden, or the Statue of Liberty, or the, or the...

I'm here 4 days, two of which are spent traveling, so to try to cram everything in would be foolish, so what do I do instead? That's right, try to fit in. I don't have the time to catch a train to see the Museums up on the West Side or down to Battery Park. You'd need a two week vacation just to see the famous things in Midtown. Easier for me to blend, do my job, appreciate that I'm here, geek out internally, and go home to my family. I'll be back.

So to fit in you can't take pictures, you have to have an umbrella and you have to walk very fast. No one stands here, and if they do they are a doorman, a moving guy or mentally unstable and directionless. My friend I met for drinks said she found me because I was the only one standing still. Pretty sad. There are also no traffic rules that apply in the known universe. Lanes are not strict, they're for decoration. Drivers have a third arm that lingers on their horn, but not in a road rage type way, more like a car saying, "Pardon me" or "Come on that's yellow." Your head has to be on a swivel here, and you always have to be moving. If you stop, you have to pull over (on the sidewalk) and find a doorway. If you stop in the middle of the sidewalk to tie your shoe, well then you die. It's that simple.

Oh, and everything here is priced like the island consists of Maharajas and Texan Oil Tycoons. Pack of smokes? 8 bucks. Heineken? $5. #4 breakfast at McDs? 6 bucks. The umbrella I bought was less than a pack of cigarettes. And people don't MAKE more here, and with living here the way it is, they eat out more too. So how do they do it? I'm thinking lots of crack and or Hawaiian goof balls. I know Austin isn't that pricey and I know people are making ends meet, but only just. How one could survive with the same pay, but higher rent, higher food prices and constant use of public transportation just boggles the mind.

Anyway, cutting this short because I'll write more when I get back, and include pictures.


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