Tag Archives: homeless

Oddities in New York City

In order to live in New York City, you must have at least one of three attributes: you have to be a) certifiably insane, b) oblivious, or c) an icebox.  Why is that?  Well, let’s break it down:

If you are a) certifiably insane, then you will fit right in with the wackos and the strung-out boozhounds in the city.  In my ten months living here, I’ve seen the following oddities in New York:

  • nakedcowgirla gentleman jogging in a thong onesie
  • a person dressed up as Spiderman, casually walking down the street, as if window shopping
  • an older woman dressed as the “Naked Cowgirl” in Times Square, with very little covering her backside…

Of course, you can still survive New York sans-crazy if you are simply b) oblivious. By oblivious, I mean that you will inevitably encounter the following, yet you still won’t bat an eye:

  • sidewalkfeces of all kinds, including, but not limited to: pigeon, dog, rat, human, and hybrid combinations of all four
  • smells… bad ones
  • and many a sidewalk puddle so disgusting that, if you were to be splashed with its contents, would compel you to burn your clothing, and perhaps chop off any appendage that encountered the filth

Lastly, to live in New York, you also must become c) an icebox. This is not a suggestion; it is an actual necessity, especially in these recessionary times.  If you have a heart while living in New York, you will likely end up broke, homeless, or jogging in a thong onesie through the Upper East Side.  Since January, I have been asked for money by:

  • homelessjesussolicitors in the subway
  • solicitors living in the streets (one, with a pet rat nesting in her hair)
  • solicitors imploring me to help the children, support the troops, feed the hungry, cure cancer, go green, buy booze, and welcome back Jesus

The great thing about living in New York, though, is that once you get past the insanity, the filth, and the ever-present guilt (“sorry, I don’t have any cash, but here’s a cough drop”), you can pretty much put up with anything.  There is nothing out there that can make you feel uncomfortable, because we’ve seen it all, right?


Tonight, I was walking home from work when I encountered someone else who was walking step-in-step with me.  Now, this doesn’t seem all that strange… until you think about the unwritten NYC pedestrian rule.  The sidewalk is like a one-lane highway.  You don’t ever have two cars on the same side of the road, going at the same speed.  You either pass, or let the other guy pass.  But for three blocks, this woman walked right next to me.  I sped up.  She sped up.  I slowed down.  She slowed down.  It freaked me out.  Finally, I took a detour into Duane Reade to see if she would follow me.  But thankfully, she went on her merry way.

Is it just me, or is that whole scenario stranger than the 70-year old Naked Cowgirl?  Or… am I just heading down the path towards (un)certifiably insane?



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I Hate Superficiality… But Please, Tell Me How Pretty I Look Today

The nice thing about living in New York City is that, no matter what you look like, every single woman will get catcalled at least once.  You could be wearing sweats and shoveling an empanada into your face.  You could be toting around your five kids and ten grandkids.  You could be heinously unattractive.  It doesn’t matter.  If you are a woman in New York City, you will get hooted at, hollered at, and hit on.  Even that girl in the photo below will get catcalled in NYC.  The creepy men of New York are wonderfully indiscriminate.

You could look like this, and still get hit on in NYC.

And no matter how much we disdain such boorish behavior, secretly, it’s rather flattering.  Every woman likes to get complimented, even if the source is a lazy-eyed homeless man with a pet rat and a neck tattoo.  We can rail all we want against the superficiality of the world, but there’s a glimmer of satisfaction when we’re the momentary center of some crazy man’s attention.  It’s that same esteem-boosting feeling you might get if you were asked to pose for Playboy:

Playboy Executive: “Hey, we want you to pose nude in Playboy for our ‘Professional Women of New York’ special.”

Me: “Excuse me? I am insulted!” [Translation: “Hell yeah! Still got it!”]

Playboy Executive: “Why not?  Don’t you know our clientele?  This is a great opportunity for you to get your next job in hedge funds, private equity, or Congressional politics.”

Me: “I can’t believe you have the gall to say that to me.  Unlike those skanks who pose for Playboy, I actually have some dignity and self-respect.  I don’t need to pose nude to rise up the corporate ladder.”  [Translation: “I would look good in Playboy. Oh yeah!  Your balance sheet can’t handle my assets… ass-ets.”]

Playboy Executive: “Come on.  It’s not like we’re Penthouse.”

angrywomanMe: “You disgust me.  Your entire existence is demeaning to women, and the bimbos you select as your centerfolds are putting feminism to shame.  I don’t know how you can sleep at night.  I just pray, pray, that one day you’ll have a daughter, and you will have to explain to her what you do for a living.  And if you have any semblance of a soul, you will feel the deepest and darkest regret in knowing that her future has been tainted by your pathetic, tasteless publication.  You want me to pose nude?  I’ll pose nude the day that you tell your daughter that you exploit women, you sick bastard.” [Translation: “I love being able to riff on this guy.  Not only do I feel super sexy, but I feel so righteous as well! R-E-S-P-E-C-T.”]

Playboy Executive: “Well… let me know if you ever change your mind.”

Me: “Not in a million years, buster.” [Translation: “Unless I’m single and jobless when I’m 35…”]

[A few minutes later]

My Facebook Status: “Just got asked to pose nude in Playboy.  Haha!  I said no, of course!”

My Twitter: “Playboy wanted me to pose nude, lol.  How gross!  I said no… Woman power!”

My BBM Away Message: “Crazy day! Was asked to pose nude for Playboy.  They are such scumbags!”

…And so on.  Because everyone ought to know how hot and virtuous I am.

Isn’t superficiality great, especially when it goes your way?  Even women without daddy issues want attention now and then.

So, the next time I am fortunate enough to be hooted at in New York, I will politely thank the greasy creep who complimented me.  Then, I’ll return the favor: I’m sure every guy wants to feel good about his cardboard home or his delivery bike.  And then he can log onto Twitter and let all his friends know that he’s still got it too.

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