Jun 20, 2005

you mean you guys have indoor plumbing?

If there's one thing I've learned about New York, it's that the city is home to a lot of people that are about as parochial as people from Nowhere, North Dakota. Case in point. Take a look at some of these quotes from this article in the Gothamist about a NYT's piece on dating in the suburbs.

Perhaps because the editors were tired of covering stories about the city's real estate bubble, the New York Times Real Estate section took time to try to convince readers that singles are moving to the suburbs. And by suburbs, the definition includes not just Stamford, South Norwalk, White Plains and Larchmont, but also New Jersey's Hoboken and Newark. Now, some people might stand by the quality of life improvements (especially if their companies are out in the 'burbs) and lower prices, but Gothamist sees a huge flaw. If you meet and date someone in your suburban town, you're going out to the three cool bars or two really good restaurants or one movie theater. But then what happens when you break up? You're left going to those same places, likely to run into your ex. Unless one of you decides to actually move out of town, you're screwed. And, that, ladies and gentlemen, is one reason why Gothamist loves New York City: There are any number of establishments we're willing to adopt in desperate times.

What do you think of living in the suburbs in your single years? Have you done it? Tell us!
There's humor here on a number of levels. First off is the assertion by the New York Times that Hoboken is the suburbs. For those that don't know, Hoboken is in New Jersey just across the Hudson from Manhattan (map here). Right on the waterfront. It's about as suburban as downtown Chicago. But if you grow up in Manhattan I think your worldview is that Hoboken is suburbia. That the suburbia you see in the movies is just something that exists in movies. It's not real.

Second area of comedy. The Gothamist assertion that dating in the suburbs amounts to Sartre's 'No Exit' living room. As if you walk out of your front door in Pleasantville USA and trip over everyone you've dated. Again I think the worldview of Manhattanites is that it's downright hard living outside of the city.

And then my absolute favorite is the last line. "Have you done it?" 'It' here being the act of living in the suburbs. Almost like it's some kind of amusement ride at Disneyworld.
"Dude have you been on the Suburbia? It is crazy scary. There's no where to eat, you can't date, and it does a 360 loop at the end. There's a huge line."
While there are lots of people who moved to Manhattan, there is still a huge contingent that have never lived anywhere else. The things that come out of their mouths are mind boggling at times. It's fun to play along though. "No of course we don't have indoor plumbing"

No comments: