Hello New York

by antigob

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My main thought this week has been, ‘oh sh*t we live in New York.’ Usually it pops into my head when walking down the streets, but occasionally I’ll think of a variation: ‘oh sh*t I’m jogging in Riverside Park, cool dog.’ So yeah, on the whole it’s been an odd week.

But to keep the disbelief at bay I’m doing two things:

  1. Reading through a pile of New Yorkers
  2. Making a big list of things to do, like get a mobile*, sort out my bankcard, get in touch with the friends who live here and buy Knicks tickets.

So far, I’ve noticed:

  • No Union Jacks, which makes a change
  • You have Italian Americans, Irish Americans, but no English Americans: I suppose they’re just Americans. Here’s a Wiki article
  • Wikipedia is often almost plausibly right. Just like a good alibi.

The other big news is I have a bike, thanks to the scholar who’s lending T his office at Columbia. It’s not just any old bike. It’s a carbon fiber/aluminum road bike that weighs less than a bag of sugar and rides like you’ve eaten one.

What can I tell you about bikes and the Big Apple:

  • Most people ride in Central Park. It’s pretty much a giant velo track of about six miles with quite a few tasty hills.
  • The strangest bike I’ve seen so far is an elliptical treadmill bike
  • Even streets are one-way West to East. Odd streets are one-way East to West
  • The roads are pretty safe as long as you ride with confidence
  • But stay the f*ck away from yellow cabs. There’s some bizarre form of Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle going on: the very act of looking at a cab alters its path.

Tomorrow, I go to my Columbia Spouse lunch. I have no idea what this will be like. The faculty sent me a form asking me what three things I’d like to do in New York, but I left it blank because all I could think of was eating a massive plate of hamburgers while Yellow’s The Race played in the background.

On Monday I’m off to see a co-working space in Williamsburg. Oh yes.

*I quite like being phoneless, although I still have my UK number