There is something that’s been on my mind for quite a while now that, in light of recent events, I need to come out with. Out-of-Towners are obnoxious.
Generalization? Maybe. But it’s true. How many times do you New Yorkers have to listen to whining of a transplanted West Coaster complaining about the weather, or a Mid-Westerner complaining about the unfriendliness, or a Floridian complaining that he can’t watch the Heat games (which he now wants to do because the Heat are apparently good)?
All the time, that’s when. (Well, except for the Heat fan, because he won’t start following until the playoffs anyway.) If I had a nickel for every time I heard two OoTs complaining about how they have to live in New York, I’d be making money in a really weird way. And a lot of it.
In all their complaining about how terrible New York is, they never stop to realize that there is, in fact, a reason they live here. I will share with you a story about someone I know personally, who was a transplanted OoT, and finally achieved his dream of moving out of the Dreaded Town of Death. His claim was that in the town he in which he wanted to live, he could buy a house and the monthly mortgage would be equivalent to the rent he was currently paying. Once he moved out of the DToD, it did not take him long to realize that he was right about the mortgage, but miscalculated other things, like property tax in his new home town. Oh, and a salary for the same type of job he was doing here was much lower. It wasn’t long before he had to take on a second job, but he was happy because he was out of the DToD.
And that brings me to why OoTs are obnoxious. I’m not saying that New Yorkers are nice, or even that New York is a great place to live, or raise kids. Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. There’s a decent possibility that I won’t stay here. To each their own. But please do me and the rest of New York a favor. When you have something that you hate about New York, don’t complain to us about it. Just fuggedaboutit. You make these claims and you expect us to try to defend the City. You are putting us New Yorkers in an awkward position. We know your complaints are infantile, and it was YOU who chose to live here. Grow up and stop whining.
As a friend pointed out to me, OoTs whine about how New Yorkers don't notice things because we're moving so quickly, yet all OOTers notice are negative things. They're such pessimists about NY that they close their eyes to all the countless times random strangers help a mother with her baby carriage on the subway steps, or stop to make sure someone is alright, or give directions and make sure you understand them, or take a picture for you several times until it comes out right, or give up a seat on the subway to an elderly person, a pregnant person, or even to a child and parent, or a student with a heavy backpack or hold the subway door for you if you're running to catch the train, or elevator doors.
I hope I’m not making New Yorkers out to be Gandhi or anything. There is much left to be desired. New Yorkers can be jerks. But so can everybody else. This is America. The rest of the world hates us more than OoTs hate New York. Why? For the same reason OoTs hate New York. We’re brash, ignorant, arrogant and rude. Yes, it is a generalization, and I know you OoTs are saying to yourselves “that’s not me they are complaining about.” Yes it is. You are American. Therefore you are what Americans represent. New Yorkers are the same way. Not all of us (in fact, not most of us) are how New Yorkers are represented in your minds. (To tell you the truth, being from Queens, I have these same feelings about Brooklynites, but I’m not a jerk, so I don’t say it to their faces.)
When you yell at us as to why your home town was so much better than our home town, it annoys us. In fact, most of us can’t go on the offensive either. You know why? We’ve never been to you quaint little one-supermarket, two-traffic light, everybody-lives-within-a-
Yes, that was sarcasm. But OoTs really get annoyed when New Yorkers point out the OoT’s ignorance at basic New York geography, like Brooklyn being to the southwest of Queens, the various ways of getting to New Jersey, and how to get to the Five Towns. But when New Yorkers show ignorance of some OoT geography, like how close Memphis is to St. Louis, or That the largest city in Ohio is Columbus, or thinking that Oxnard is some sort of genetic defect, OoTs lose their minds. They call it “Typical New York Thinking.” I’ve got news for all you OoTs: If you live in New York, you should know more about it than we know about a town which we’ve never visited! I’ve known OoTs who have lived in the City that still don’t know the difference between the Harlem River Drive and the West Side Highway, or that SoHo and NoHo are named that for a reason, or which towns make up the Five Towns. Get with the program, OoTs: YOU’RE JUST LIKE US!
Now, I assume that I don’t have enough of a readership to suggest the following, but I would like to see other New Yorker’s opinion on OoTs. Do these types of things bother you as much as they bother me? And to the OoTs, where am I wrong? I know (if you read this at all), you were appalled at it. “How can he even compare us to New Yorkers,” you’re probably exclaiming. “He must be a New Yorker. It’s Dallas that’s in Delaware. Everybody knows that!” So please, I invite all OoTs to explain to me why I’m wrong. I will call it “The New York States of Mind.” So bring it.