I am NOT in a New York state of mind

 

This post from my blog buddy Dingo pretty much sums up all the reasons I could never live in New York City. It’s not that I have anything against New York, it’s that it’s just too big. Too loud. Too crazy.

I grew up–and still live–in a place where people speak with a slow drawl. (Although they’re becoming harder to find.) Downtown means Main Street. And while we were larger than the iconic “one-horse town,” we were still pretty darn small.

The first time I went to New York City I was in my late 20s, 30 at the most. One of  our planned activities was meeting up with husband’s cousin. This girl is Southern to the core. Grew up in Mississippi. College in Nashville. She graduated and went to New York. We were supposed to call her at a pre-arranged time. Remember, this is before the days of cell phones, texts or e-mails.

We find a pay phone on a sidewalk in Manhattan.

I dial the number.

Ring.

“Nuyawker” the voice at the other end screeched.

“Hhhhello” I whispered.

“NUYAWKER…NUYAWKER…WHODOYAWANNATAWKTO?”

Click.

I turned to husband…”A mean lady yelled at me and I hung up.”

(In case my attempts at dialect fell flat, cousin worked at The New Yorker magazine.)

Husband called back and braved the mean lady and our cousin got a good laugh out of the story.

A day or so later we decided that we wanted to have a genuine New York delicatessen experience. We went to a famous deli and got in line. I carefully watched all the people in front of me order. I studied the menu. I confidently walked up to the counter when it was my turn.

“WHADDAYA HAVE?” the man in white yelled. (why do they keep yelling?)

“Corned beef with Swiss cheese on rye bread” I said with as much brio as I could muster.

He nodded…and I should’ve left well enough alone.

“With mayonnaise.”

You’d’ve thought I asked for a side of pickled baby.

“NO” he said. (loudly) “YOU CANNOT PUT MAYONNAISE ON CORNED BEEF.”

“Yes, please” I replied.

He just shook his head, muttered something about dumb hicks and made my sandwich. Without mayo.

So here’s what I think about New York: It’s a great place. It’s got energy and style and Real Housewives. But it’s not for me. I just can’t stand all that yelling.

10 Comments

Filed under General Frippery, Travel

10 responses to “I am NOT in a New York state of mind

  1. I’m so not a New York girl either. In some ways, I wish I were because I can certainly see the appeal of the city. But I’m too much of a dork, too disinterested in clothing trends and fashions, to ever “make it there.”

  2. Niece Lash

    Pickled baby…you are too much for words! Hilarious.

  3. I feel the same way about NY. I mean it is a wonderful city – art, music, food – but it’s all a bit too much for this small town boy. Even the city I live in now, with just over 1,000,000 seems a bit much to me!

  4. WHAT?! WHAT?! SPEAK UP, LADY! I CAN’T HEAR YOU!!

  5. I consider myself a city girl. 8 years in The Smoke. The buzz. The vibe. The masses. I love it. Even so, NYC scares the shit out of me. I love to visit, but I wonder if I could manage it the way I manage London.

  6. Found you by way of, I think, Pos. Some nice writing. Thanks.

  7. Hwoo ja wanna tawk to?

    Ha. I remember that, Cindy.

  8. Don’t get me started

    Check the New York link category on my blog.

  9. I spent about 20 years in New York. First in Brooklyn and then in Manhattan. It’s certainly not for everybody, but they were the BEST years of my life!!

  10. Robbi

    Mayo? on Corned Beef? Good heavens woman! You’re lucky they didn’t run you off the island 🙂 I bet you made eye contact with people on the subway too. I grew up 12 miles from Times Square; I guess that’s why I still don’t think that Nashville or St. Louis are really cities…

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