On Living In New York


When living in New York, travel always with a phone charger and a toothbrush. You will be spending more time in homes not belonging to you. Fresh breath makes for better kisses the next morning and ensures better service at brunch. Without charge, how is one to simulate human connectedness?

Living in New York, the nights are not as long as they seem, and before you know it, it is always five o’clock.

There are times here that people sleep, but they do so lightly. Whiskey breath is a next best alternative to minty breath, but cheap beer will get the job done.

Never stock the fridge with fresh produce. Never keep the fridge stocked.

Remember to change your underwear when you have returned home, your home.

The same clothing can be worn for days. You must be clever about it.

In New York, there are only two options: to be clever or be devastatingly naïve.

What constitutes as East Williamsburg will always be debated.

Married women will rehash accounts of their weddings. Listen to them. Their cheeks will be flushed.

They will repeat minute details. They will wring hands. They will beam with life.

Married men do not say that they are so.

At dinner, everyone will want the same thing. You will want something else. Stay quiet until all of your appetites become theirs.

Sex is insatiable.

Everything will be a day old: milk; Thai food; the news; sex.

New York City sunsets are just as they are in postcards. Don’t forget to look up. Tell someone often “I miss you” and, “Wish you were here.” It is because this is true.

Rooftops are safe-havens.

Speak the truth at times that so permit. You will be feared and you will be respected. On occasion, you will be heard.

Losing a Metrocard is inevitable. It will feel as if to have lost everything. One hundred and thirteen times two will play over and over again like a schoolyard taunt. Discovering that it can be claimed will feel like winning the lottery.

A common theme of New York is loss, of losing everything. Overcoming this each time is assurance that anything is possible.

Losing a piece of your heart becomes the only fear.

For every two J trains heading in the direction that you are not, there will be one going in the direction that you are. Here there is a lot of waiting. To be on time is to be late.

But New York is its most valiant at night.

image – Tamaro Photo