“But until then — accept that your umbrellas will turn themselves inside out.”

March 23, 2014 § 5 Comments

A normal stroll through the UES. And that smell you smell? Hot blood mostly, you'll get used to it.

A normal stroll through the Upper East Side. And that smell you smell? Hot blood mostly, you’ll get used to it.

The first few sentences of this article about why New York City doesn’t love you are frustrating, annoying even. Very TOUGH GUY NO WHINERS, which from my current vantage point (happy dog, nice husband, gorgeous backyard garden, green and flowers and spring sweetness everywhere) just doesn’t interest me. I do however recognize this sentiment; it was me, down to the very last sentence and ellipses and expletive, for the entire 11-month period Chris and I lived in New York City. Living in New York (although “living” is more like it) just DOES that to a person — makes them angry, rushed, and desperate to get back home, whatever that might mean. For me, coming home meant coming here, where I presently sit in Arcata, California. It meant walking away from the academic job market. It meant reassessing all the choices I thought I had figured out.

I owe New York everything, in other words. Had I not been thrown against that particular wall, I wouldn’t have had the impetus to ask myself the hard questions about what I valued most. Say if we’d stayed in Eugene post-graduation, where life is not terrible — without the daily, constant reminder of what happens when you end up living in the wrong place, I doubt I would have thought to fret about what might happen if I ended up living in the wrong place. As it was, I couldn’t help but fret. And having fretted, it was clear what needed to happen.

So thanks New York. You ARE like a cat that would eat your face after you collapsed in the kitchen from a heart attack. And for that I will be forever grateful.


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§ 5 Responses to “But until then — accept that your umbrellas will turn themselves inside out.”

  • Katie says:

    I only had to visit New York for a weekend to know I would hate my life if I lived there for a long period of time (unless I was rich, of course…that’s a different New York). Regardless, just reading this sentence: “Avoid the romantics who suggest strolling ethnic neighborhoods like they’re inspiration zoos.” reminded me of a certain blogger who really should just move to NYC if he thinks his current life is so arduous and crappy,

    • Oh, did I just snort. And yes, yes he should. For the hot blood-smelling streets alone. I mean can you imagine the PROSE that would inspire?

      And double yes, Rich New York is not the same as Normal Person New York. Even then, I don’t think I could do it. Because…..horizons, you know? You take them for granted, living anywhere reasonable. That was truly one of the most upsetting things about living in New York, and you can’t put a price tag on actually seeing where the sun goes every night.

      ps Come visit Humby!!! We got plenty of horizon here.

  • frank@fra.nk says:

    Never leave New York.
    Never. Leave. New. York.

    Unless you go to L.A., where you will get your just deserts.

  • […] all the places I’ve lived), I am even more grateful not to live there anymore. The smell of hot blood was too strong for this Californian who occasionally likes to see the […]

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