photo – Gary Cimorelli
How’s it Going?
Four weeks later and I am still pinching myself. Yes, that’s me, working on a play in The Big Apple.
I know! Pinch me again!
The number one thing I’ve missed about NY? The number one thing that feeds my soul?
New York Pizza? NO
And it is actually impossible to find good pizza in Manhattan – a walk across the Brooklyn bridge to the Italian neighborhood is in order soon.
The bagels? NO
I’ve adapted to the NY-esque bagels at Goldstein’s Bagel Bakery in La Canada.
The pastrami? Well…
I forgot how much I missed good Jewish pastrami which is found NO WHERE outside of New York City. Let’s take a moment here to say: YUM!
Do you want more guesses?
Is it the subway? NO
Although the ability to get anywhere worth going while experiencing the best people watching on the planet, not to mention the onslaught of amazing musical talent, never ceases to amaze.
Is it the 24-hourness of the city? NO
Even I go to sleep at some point.
Is it the hustle-bustle? NO
I love New York, but at my home in LA I can hear a pin drop and New York, SOMETIMES YOU ARE JUST TOO DAMN NOISY!
Is it that New Yorkers are affectionate? Possibly…
There is no air kissing here. People hug and kiss on the mouth. Lots of touching in New York and I love it. Lots of holding hands walking down the street and I LOVE it. Lots of “sweetie” and “doll” and “cookie” and “toots” in every conversation.
If you connect with someone, you are friends, real friends, and it is immediately understood that you will always be friends. Sorry, if you like me, you are stuck with me. And if you say, “I will call you,” I know you will.
OK, enough! What is the thing about NY that I miss the most????
It’s the KIBBITZING!
In New York everybody has something to say, everybody has an opinion and everbody is FUNNY!!!! New York is a funny town. In New York you can get anyone to smile, everyone gets the joke and if you think you’re funny, someone will inevitably try to top you. (And let it not go unnoticed that everyone knows just enough Yiddish to make it unnecessary for me to define the word kibbitzing.)
New York City is a town trying to have the last word.
What New Yorkers take for a snappy comeback non-New Yorkers interpret as rude.
At a check-out counter:
Me: I think I have the exact change.
Cashier: Who cares what you think?
New York is one big community conversation. Jumping into an overheard conversatoin is an acceptible part of the social fabric. After all you are in close proximity to a lot of people all the time.
Crossing a street in midtown with my friend:
ME: It was the absolute WORST play. I hated it!
Total Stranger: Which show? I’ll make sure not to see it.
I immediately understood that a total stranger sensed from my passionate review she needed to pass on that show also.
New Yorkers like to help strangers. Why? What do they enjoy more than anything else? EXPRESSING THEIR OPINION.
Trying on a jacket in the clearance section at Macy’s:
Casual Shopper: Oh, that looks cute. How much is it?
Me: With my coupon? Less than $14.
Casual Shopper: You have to buy it! If you’re not getting it, take it off, and I’ll buy it, but one of us is leaving the store with that jacket.
After my first two weeks here, I was already giving subway advice.
“Yeah, you can transfer at Union Station to the 6 train.”
“No, the Q train doesn’t stop at Prince street, take the N or the R.”
“Just take the train to times Square. You can transfer there to anywhere.”
Am I an expert? NOOOOO! But someone asked for my opinion and I can sound like an expert. And that’s what NY is all about.