Friday, November 16, 2018

The Problem with Manhattan

Midtown Manhattan (Wikimedia Commons)

"The problem with Manhattan is, everyone comes here eventuallyall your old friends, enemies, lovers, demons. People you met on vacation in Nepal will wind up beating you out for a taxi. The bully who called you 'Dog Breath' all through first grade will turn up at your local diner, and will remember you didn't come to his sixth birthday party, which is where the whole trouble began. Don’t come to the big city to become anonymous. New York is like Oz: The Wicked Witch of the West turns out to be the lady who didn't like your dog back in Kansas."
Alisa Sheckley, The Better to Hold You

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Child Again

Jane's Carousel

"The best thing about being here in New York is that everything is new and strange, and so I become new to myself. It's like I am a child again."
Alisa Kwitney, Sex as a Second Language

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Giving Place

"New York used to be a giving place, a place that gave more than it took. Now it takes more than it gives."
Archibald MacLeish, quoted in Architectural Digest

Tuesday, November 13, 2018


"Spanish is the language of the early morning in Manhattan. At the bagel place where I get my coffee, everybody, customers and counter help alike, are papi or flaco or hermano—or addressed by country of origin. Doesn't matter if Spanish is is even your language. At this hour, it's what's spoken. It's how things are done."
Anthony Bourdain, Medium Raw

Monday, November 12, 2018

New York Stories

"New York is certainly the best city for stories. If you want a lot of variety, if you want a lot of excitement, New York is perfect. It's the biggest city in the country, there is a lot of crime in NY, a lot of places you can use for background. For sure I am lucky that New York was the city I knew."
Stan Lee, Soul Crime. New York

Friday, November 9, 2018


"He tells me about New York and how it opens like an origami figure, showing more dimensions every day, more hidden restaurants and art galleries, more tucked-away stores and more people, always more people, all of them with stories."
Lauren Oliver, Broken Things

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Outer Boroughs


"His speech was not cowboy laconic but rather Queens jive, the wage-slave patois of that tiny throwback slice of the city workforce that was actually born somewhere out there in the B- and C-list boroughs, the ones separated from the main island by waterways that served as velvet ropes."
Kyle Smith, Caroline in the City

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Human Race

Coney Island

"New York was just like the human race. Sure you could scare it, slow it down, maybe even halt it for a little while. But it kept right the hell on going. No matter what. That was the best thing about New York City. "
James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge, Tick Tock

Tuesday, November 6, 2018


NYU Langone Health

"I started to realize how well New York suited me. Its energy and aggressiveness were very compatible with my own. New York is very contagious. It had gotten into my blood."
Josie Cruz Natori, On Our Own Terms

Monday, November 5, 2018

New York Whims

"In order to survive in New York City one has to be willing to bend to the city's whims. Bend to the city's whims! I thought. Bend or perish!"
Patty Yumi Cottrell, Sorry to Disrupt the Peace

Sunday, November 4, 2018

New York City Marathon

New York City Marathon (Jim Henderson / Wikimedia Commons)

"Everyone wins the marathon. We all have the same feeling at the start—nervous, anxious, excited. It is a broader, richer, and even with twenty-seven thousand peoplemore intimate experience than I found when racing in trackNew York is the marathon that all the biggest stars want to win, but has also been the stage for an array of human stories more vast than any other sporting event."
Grace Waitz, 1,001 Pearls of Runners' Wisdom

Friday, November 2, 2018

Quality of Life

"A new report claims that California is the state with the worst quality of life. 'Ha, ha!" said a New Yorker right before a rat fell in his mouth."
Seth Meyers, Late Night with Seth Meyers

Thursday, November 1, 2018


Chinatown (Wikimedia Commons)

"We turned right on Allen and right again onto East Broadway where it crosses under the Manhattan Bridge, and only then did a different city emerge. We'd come into a narrow pocket on the edge of Chinatown, an immigrant neighborhood that sloped toward the river like it might never find its footing.Life down here was lived in the open. Drying clothes billowed from fire escapes. Asian men huddled over games passed down through centuries. Women watched or shuffled past, weighed down not by what they carried but something heavier--the hard slog of it all."
David Goodwillie, American Subversive

Wednesday, October 31, 2018


Third Avenue

"In recent years Halloween, sick of dressing up as Robin to New Year's Eve's Batman, has taken the Most Intolerable New York Holiday crown. Perhaps it’s because this city has such a buffet of flimsily contained id to begin with. There are a whole lot of people living here who don’t need to let loose on Halloween — their psyches are pretty unstructured on an average Tuesday."
Sloane Crosley, The New York Times

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Manhattan Noise

Midtown Manhattan

"The noise of Manhattan hit her like a brick wall, a solid slap in the face. A thick cloud of sound, woven tightly of individual threads—the roar of conversation, the thumping footfalls of the walking throngs, the dull gratings and booms of various construction sites, sirens, helicopter blades, music, the great soft whoosh of the Hudson."
Rachel Heng, Suicide Club

Monday, October 29, 2018


Jane's Carousel and Manhattan Bridge

"The imagination is well nourished in New York, which to many seems like a city that already has the mythical character of a dreamscape."
Janet Allon, The New York Times

Friday, October 26, 2018

Reason for Being

Financial District

"I had spent much of my childhood in this part of Manhattan (my father ran a moderately sized investment house) and from an early age I'd been struck by the fantastic activity that surrounded the getting and keeping of money. This activity could be alternatively seductive and repellant, but by 1896 it was unarguably New York's strongest reason for being
Caleb Carr, The Alienist

Thursday, October 25, 2018


Central Park

"New York is such a fascinating city. It's a city that attracts and welcomes so many characters, but it can also be very cold and unwelcoming sometimes. The city is very vibrant and energetic, but it can quickly spit you out if you're weak and not vibrant."
Andrew Dosunmu, The Village Voice

Wednesday, October 24, 2018


NYC ferry

"I love New York City
She's lived and died
So many times, yeah!
Life is always tough
On New York City, oh lord
But she is fine, she always survives, yeah!"
Lenny Kravitz, New York City

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

When You've Lived in NYC for Too Long

"This is how you know you've lived in New York City for too long. When you casually sweep away a cockroach with the flick of your hand the way a fey king dismisses a court jester from his presence, it's time to leave New York City for a second and realize you shouldn't be so grizzled that it doesn't bother you  that half the cast of A Bug's Life is straight up AirBNB'ing in your cupboards."
Phoebe Robinson, Everything's Trash, But It's Okay

Monday, October 22, 2018


Central Park

"Central Park must be one of the only places in Manhattan that doesn't feel like it's owned by anyone or named after anyone or making anyone a profit. It's this oasis of pure existence in a realm of sustenance and maintenance."
David Levithan, Someday

Friday, October 19, 2018

Night is Abolished

Third Avenue

"Night is abolished. . . .We have seen restaurants full at dawn— with people who will be at work four hours later. New York is a town that never halts, never slacks off. Subways and street-cars run up and down all night long, twenty-four hours a day. . . . Everything goes fast. . . .New York is a perpetual thunderstorm."
Paul Morand, Mirror for Gotham

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Magical and Enigmatic


"New York is better than pretty—it's energetic. It's magical and enigmatic and the streets are paved with the footsteps and successes of hundreds of thousands of people who've walked them before me. Made it through some tough shite before me."
Lyla Payne, Living the Dream

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Monday, October 15, 2018

Unspoken Rules

C subway train

"There are so many unspoken rules when you live here, like the way you're never supposed to stop in the middle of the sidewalk or stare dreamily up at tall buildings or pause to read graffiti. No giant folding maps, no fanny packs, no eye contact. No humming songs from Dear Evan Hansen in public. And you're definitely not supposed to take selfies at street corners, even if there's a hot dog stand and a whole line of yellow taxis in the background, which is eerily how you always pictured New York. You're allowed to silently appreciate it, but you have to be cool. From what I can tell, that's the whole point of New York: being cool."
Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera, What If It's Us

Friday, October 12, 2018

Sense of Discovery


"New York encourages a sense of discovery—I'm never sure what I'm going to eat next or what it will taste like. It's an awe-inspiring place."
Alain Ducasse, Jetsetter

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Manhattan Living

Park Avenue

"You can basically summarize Manhattan living by the number of doors you have. If you only have one door, the one that leads into your  apartment, that's not ideal, but at least you're not living in Jersey. Two doors, though—the front door and the bathroom door—that's luxury!"
Hank Green, An Absolutely Remarkable Thing

Wednesday, October 10, 2018


Midtown Manhattan

"Being in New York takes so much energy as to leave none for any other kind of being."
John Updike, Architectural Digest

Tuesday, October 9, 2018


"I see New York, and every other city, as a living entity, though at one time New York was more vibrant than most. There's still good aspects, but I can't ignore that some of what made the city great has been prettified to make it more accessible to tourists, and that's hurt the city."
Jill Cunniff, New York Rock

Monday, October 8, 2018



"There's an openness to New York and New Yorkers in general that I'm really fond of. It's one of those places where you're out and about amongst people all day. I'm not dissing Los Angeles or anything—I like it too—but you're in a car so much in LA. Here everyone is saying hi to you."
Norman Reedus, NYCGo

Friday, October 5, 2018

Better When It Was Worse

Third Avenue

"There was a small, secret part of Nora that was comfortable with trash on the street. It reminded her of her youth, when she'd first arrived in a nastier, scarier, dirtier New York City and moved into a shabby apartment with her best friend, Jenny. A better New York, she sometimes thought to herself now, but never, ever said, one of the many things none of them ever admitted to themselves, at least aloud: that it was better when it was worse."
Anna Quindlen, Alternate Side

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Dark and Wet

Madison Square Park

"New York is always, always, always crowded and wet, and dark, and you learn to live with all of it and to wish you were back when you're not there."
Darryl Strawberry, Darryl

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

New York Hope

Central Park

"I walk across Central Park in new motorcycle boots, filled with a particular New York brand of hope. Everyone here is fulfilling vast dreams to make billions, redefine modern dance, launch artisanal ginger ale companies, and they are all in the park tonight."
Hannah Howard, Feast

Tuesday, October 2, 2018


Long Island City

"This was New York City, after all, not the suburbs. In the city, people did not make friends on the basis of proximity."
Ellen Feldman, The Unwitting

Monday, October 1, 2018

Civilized Hour

Lexington Avenue

"I am a New Yorker, and 7:00 am is a civilized hour to finish the day, not to start it."
Sonia Sotomayor, quoted in The Washington Post

Friday, September 28, 2018

New York Past

“In New York City real estate parlors took your money and lied to you, drug addicts relieved themselves in plain sight, and the Public Library was closed on Mondays.” 
Tom hanks, Uncommon Type

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Psychological Privacy

Flatiron Plaza

"If the other passengers noticed that she was crying, they pretended not to, which Laura appreciated. People who thought New Yorkers were cold and uncaring didn't understand that in a city like this, one's physical proximity to strangers necessitated a respect of their psychological privacy."
Kate Greathead, Laura & Emma

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

All Walks of Life

North Williamsburg Landing

"New Yorkers are incredibly adept at dealing with people from all walks of life. You're constantly confronted by people who are different than you so you stop seeing everybody as so different. Our country needs more of that right now."
Lela Loren, BELLA New York Magazine

Monday, September 24, 2018

Mythic Sounding

"One of the great things about New York is that it’s dotted with these ridiculously mythic-sounding settings — I mean, we have a huge garbage dump called Fresh Kills! You can’t make that up."
Adam Sternbergh, Brkyner

Friday, September 21, 2018

Public Imagination

Carlton Arms Hotel

"New York is possibly the only place in which most people have already lived, in some sense, in the public imagination, before they ever arrive."
Ling Ma, Severance

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Most Ideal

Statue of Liberty

"New York is the world's greatest city and has been for a long time. Other cities have their moment but none of them come back—like Seattle had its moment. Hurray! But New York's consistently there whether it's the art or writing or music or ideas. It's the most idealized part of America, and to me it's the most ideal part."
James Murphy, New York Rock

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

How to Distinguish Oneself

News Corporation

"Living in New York City for five years, I had discovered the easiest way to distinguish oneself was to have a conscience or a sense of morality, since most people in Manhattan were extraordinary thieves of various standing, some of them multi-billionaires."
Patty Yumi Cottrell, Sorry to Disrupt the Peace

Tuesday, September 18, 2018


West 32nd

"New York is like one big potluck party to which everyone in the entire world was invited, and everyone showed up (bringing their favorite dish). It's a friggin great city."
Holly Jennings, Dowdy Corners Cookbook Club

Monday, September 17, 2018


Sixth Avenue

"New York is a rather energetic city, so there's immediately that hum that's under everything you do that really energizes."
Nancy Allen, Wall Street Journal

Friday, September 14, 2018


East 56th

"New York's supreme beauty, its truly unique quality, is its violence. Violence gives it nobility, excuses it, makes its vulgarity forgettable. For New York is vulgar; it is stronger, richer, newer than anything you like, but it is common."
Paul Morand, quoted in Mirror for Gotham

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Solid Rock

"It is almost impossible at any season of the year or in any quarter of the city to escape the sound of blasting, which reminds one that Manhattan, like the church of Rome, is built on solid rock."
Carl Van Vechten, quoted in Capital: New York, Capital of the 20th Century

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Never Finished

Fifth Avenue

"Modern New Yorkers have grown accustomed to the experience of going around the corner to what was last week's favorite delicatessen only to discover that, this week, it has become a wig shop; or finding, where the little place that sold handbags used to be, just off Lexington, that the entire block has disappeared to make room for an office tower. Faced with yet another example of the fact that New York is a restless, ever-changing, never-finished city, New Yorkers simply shrug and go on about their business."
Stephen Birmingham, Life at the Dakota

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Personal Insult

National September 11 Memorial

"To look at the new skyline of New York is a personal insult. As a native New Yorker, I have always felt that I owned part of that landscape, and I would often walk the campus of Queens College thinking proudly, my city, as I gazed toward the impressive structures in the distance stretching proudly for the clouds. Now, when I look at my city, I feel a sense of emptiness; a gaping wound in my heart reopens every time I seek out the place where the Twin Towers should be."
Molly O´Connor, Art of the Restless