How to Function in A Big City

At first I almost titled this piece: Rules for Being a Tourist in a Big City. However, I realized that there are, in fact, many people who live in big cities who don’t know the basic rules of functioning in a city, or even functioning as a human.

I recently took a weekend trip to Boston, where I lived for 3 years, and just like New York, I saw the same stupidity from tourists and locals alike.

So, in order to do my duty as a citizen of the World, I present you,

Shan Babe’s Rules for Functioning in a Big City.

1. Walking on Sidewalks. 

General Rules: Walk on the right, pass on the left. Walk fast or risk being run over. Keep your bike off the sidewalk.

Yes, sidewalks get crowded, and sometimes you just have to weave in and out, (a bit like Frogger) but just try to at least follow of the basic principles of human decency and be mindful when people are trying to pass.

Tourists: I know that where you’re from, you probably don’t walk to get from point A to point B very often, but just imagine if I were in a car in your city, moving 15 mph in a 65. Would you be mad? Most likely, yes. So if you want to walk slow in the big city, you better wear knee pads.

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DON’T, for the love of CHRIST, stop in the middle of the sidewalk to take a picture, answer a phone call, search for your phone/keys/etc. If you bump into a friend, (or worse, a guy/gal you used to hook up with) and would like to catch up with them, kindly step aside into the nearest apartment stoop, minding the fresh urine from the homeless man who just peed.

Please don’t walk like a fucking idiot with your stupid friends 3, 4 or 5 people wide. This doesn’t make you look cool, it just annoys the shit out of everyone. This is a big city, people have places to be. Be mindful.

And while we’re on that topic… GET THE FUCK OFF YOUR CELL PHONE IF YOU CAN’T WALK AND TEXT/TALK/SEARCH SOCIAL MEDIA while still using basic brain function.

I’m a big fan of bikes! (Yay Mother Earth!) But get your fucking Citi Bike off the sidewalk. There are bike lanes for guess what??? BIKES! There is also the street where bikes are actually considered a vehicle. (Traffic laws DO apply to bikes as well, even though most cyclist think they are exempt). If you are too afraid of the bike lanes or the street, go to Central Park and ride your bike.

Also, the yellow ones don’t stop, so if you aren’t paying attention and get hit by a taxi… your fault. Sorry.

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2. Accessing Public Transportation. 

General Rules: Have your metro card/T-Pass/whatever they call it in other cities, OUT before you stand in front of the turnstile like a fucking dick. Let people off the train before you enter.

Don’t be afraid to ask a local for help finding a place/navigating the subway. Yes, you run the risk of that person being a bitch, but I’m happy to give a friendly tourist the help they need if it means one less stupid person clogging up the public transpo system.

If you don’t have your transportation card out when you reach the turnstile, kindly step out of the way. If you would like to piss off a New Yorker, you will prevent them from catching their train. I don’t wish that wrath on anyone.

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If you do happen to reach your scheduled train on time, it is IMPERATIVE that you let the people off the train before you enter. Basic logic will tell you that the train cannot, indeed, depart until all the people are off, so elbowing your way onto the train while people are trying to get off only slows the process… and again, makes you look like a dick.

3. While on Public Transportation. 

General Rules: Seats are for sitting, not for your piles of shit. Give up seats to people who need them. Move into the center of the train. Don’t be a pole-leaner. CONTROL YOUR FUCKING CHILDREN.

In an empty train, it is acceptable to put your purse, grocery bag, shopping bag on the seat next to you. I do it sometimes. However, once the train starts populating, you are NOT so special that you can simply hold this seat for your imaginary friend, Fred, or whatever your imaginary friend’s name is. Move your shit.

If an elderly person, pregnant lady, person with crutches enters the train, get your ass up and offer them your seat. In New York, some folks of these demographic will refuse, (being the tough New Yorkers they are,) but it is always appropriate to ask. You have two legs, good health, and are capable of standing. Yeah, you worked a long day at work, but so did everyone else. This is a big fucking city, most of us are overworked and under-slept.

Staying close to a door on the train is often prime real estate, especially when you’re trying to get off in a few stops. That being said, if the train gets crowded, scoot your ass over. Or, if you can allow enough space to squeeze by without assaulting your neighbor, please get the fuck out of the way.

FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY DO NOT LEAN ON THE POLE. If I have to busy out my balancing skills to not fall over on a train because you are leaning on the length of the pole, I’m going to go bananas.

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Next, we have the children of public transportation. Crying babies get a pass… they are babies, and although incredibly annoying, cannot help their annoyingness. Your toddler and kids though? They aren’t cute. Their iPad that is blasting their video game with no headphones? Not cute. Them treating the train like a jungle gym? Not cute. Them blowing snot rockets and spitballs across the train? Not cute.

YOUR KIDS ARE NOT CUTE.

Control them.

4. Personal Hygiene 

General Rules: Deodorant, deodorant, deodorant. Hand sanitizer is a must. Crop dust in less concentrated areas.

We all stink. We all fart. We all poop.

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In a big city, everyone is closer to one another because the population is exponentially condensed into a confined space: the subway, the bus, the sidewalk, the “hottest” nightclub where everyone is packed in like sardines.

Be courteous for us, and shower. Bathing is essential for living in a city. I understand some of us may be smellier than others, but I tend to carry around deodorant, a toothbrush, mouthwash, gum and floss with me in order to keep myself smelling up to standard. I realize most of us may not be THAT particular, but I see it as me doing my duty to society by being one less smelly New Yorker.

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Also, be mindful that millions of people are touching that subway pole, that turnstile, that bathroom door, etc, etc every day. Don’t cough or sneeze and then wipe your hand on public property. There is a reason I contracted the swine flu a year ago, and it’s because there are fucking nasty people who inhabit this city. Do yourself a favor and go to Duane Reade, CVS, Walgreens or your closest neighborhood bodega and buy some .99 cent hand sanitizer. The world will thank you for it.

And just as a courtesy, if you have to fart, just look behind you. There is nothing worse than being downwind of a silent-but-deadly bomb. Research says that farts release fecal particles into the air, so think about how you would feel if a piece of shit hit you in the face.

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Speaking of poop…

5. Public Bathrooms

General Rules: Wipe up your piss. Girls, don’t get gross with your lady business. Smelly poop can sometimes not be avoided.

There is no excuse for piss on a toilet seat that everyone uses. I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t like to sit my ass cheeks on a public toilet seat. I’m well-versed in the art of the “squat and pee.” There is, however, a little rhyme all of us should remember: “If you sprinkle when you tinkle, be a sweetie, wipe the seatie.”

Simple. Or, just lay down TP on the seat an then sit your ass down. A Myth Busters episode took cultures of toilet seats and said they are often much cleaner than people assume. Also, fun fact: the first stall in a series of stalls typically has the least amount of germs since it often gets overlooked.

Now… next up: ladies. Once a month we have to endure Aunt Flo and all her glory. Most of you have been experiencing this every month over the course of many years. WHY, THEN, is it so impossible for you to not be the GROSSEST HUMAN ON THE PLANET, and clean up after yourself???

Get it together.

The last uncomfortable topic I will talk about is poop. Sometimes it’s unavoidable in a public place. If you find yourself in public, and know you need to poop, try these tips. Use the stall furthest away from the closest human. Use the restroom in the basement of the facility or the top floor; those are usually less condensed. If you find yourself in the awkward position of being in a single stall with a line outside the door, simply flush a few times, and apologize to the next person in line… or just blame it on the previous occupant…

Sometimes shit happens… literally…

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6. Escalators.  

Yes, escalators.

This one deserves it’s own category because it INFURIATES me when people don’t know the basic rules of the escalator.

IF YOU WANT TO STAND, STAY ON THE RIGHT.

Do NOT stand side-by-side with your stupid friend and clog up the whole damn escalator when there are people trying to pass on the left.

It is so simple, yet there is always that ONE MOTHERFUCKER who ruins it for everyone.

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7. Eating Out

General Rules: ALWAYS TIP. Large parties: be prepared to split the bill or just bring cash. Don’t be a dick.

This one is for all my friends in the service industry.

Some people may disagree with me here, but there really is not ever a reason not to tip. Especially in a big city where wages are usually meager enough, and some people live SOLELY on tips. Unless that server or bartender came to your home and slaughtered your first born, cut off your sexual organs, or physically assaulted you, you should ALWAYS tip.

Are there situations where I’ve dealt with some real cunts as servers/bartenders? Sure. Have I ever given someone a crappy tip for being a cunt? Sure. Have I ever not tipped? No.  My hope is that karma gets the best of these people, and in the city, it’s likely they won’t last long anyway if this is how they treat their customers. Also… YOU might be the cunt, and the attitude you get from them might be deserved.

This is especially true with large parties. Large parties are fucking annoying. If you are going to go somewhere and have a large fucking party, discuss the details ahead of time. Is everyone expected to split the bill evenly? Is everyone bringing cash? Is the server okay with splitting checks? How about the person who has one beer and an appetizer? Is there a person designated to work out the bill at the end of the night? (In my case it was always my friend Christina, she was a MASTER of working out the check).

If you find yourself in a large party, DO NOT assume that because you want to order fucking mozzarella sticks and chips and guac and potato skins, that everyone else wants to eat them… OR PAY FOR THEM. I’ve been in so many situations where we’re all supposed to “split the appetizers” when all I had was a small salad and a glass of the cheapest wine. I’m broke as a fucking joke. Don’t assume everyone has money to throw at your fucking potato skins.

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And don’t be a dick. If you can’t afford this birthday party, be honest. I’ve gone to dinners where I’ve let the birthday boy know that I would be eating at home and had one drink that I paid for in CASH. If you know that you need to bring cash, go to an ATM. We’ve all been in these situations, and they are THE WORST.

8. Going Out

General Rules: Have your ID out when you get to the bar/club. Don’t be an idiot and order a crazy complicated drink at a dive bar. Don’t get white-girl wasted. Spilling drinks is not cute.

Just like having your metro card ready when you enter the subway, have your ID out when you go somewhere. I want to drink, and if some dumb bitch is standing in front of me is giggling while she tries to search through the bottomless pit that is her purse for her ID, I’m going to get aggravated.

Don’t get between me and my whiskey.

Again, I have a lot of friends who are bartenders. They tell me what annoys them the most. Girls who come into dive bars/sports bars and ask for mojitos or cosmos or some other complicated drink that you usually get at a cocktail bar. If you’re at someplace in Midtown Manhattan that has some kind of incredibly Irish-sounding name, chances are you’re going to annoy the piss out of the bartender when they have to make you some stupid fucking sugary drink, when you should have just ordered a beer or a well drink.

Don’t get white-girl wasted… or try not to. This one is more of a guideline… not law.

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However, if you choose to get white-girl wasted, pull yourself together. None of this spilling drinks bullshit or taking off your shoes. Remember our lesson on personal hygiene??

 

9. Tolerance

General Rule: Different strokes for different folks

Just because you don’t understand a lifestyle, does not mean it’s wrong. As long as no one is hurting you, anyone else, or infringing on your rights as an american, I see no reason why we all can’t co-exist. Big cities tend to be filled with all sorts of weird birds.

Especially if you’re a tourist, or a non-native, you cannot be judgmental when you come into OUR city. Keep your racist/sexist/homophobic/naivety to yourself. You are a visitor. I don’t go to the Bible Belt and start shouting about how I’m an atheist. Don’t come to Hell’s Kitchen and run around screaming about how you hate gays.

Tolerance is a beautiful thing.

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10. BE SMART

The city is a beautiful place, but you share the city with millions of people. BE MINDFUL. The universe does not revolve around you and your smart phone. BE ALERT.

Also, remember your manners. Remember to be kind. Try to be patient with those who deserve your patience. If someone is being an idiot, and you absolutely MUST call them out, try not to be the bitchiest version of yourself. Stand up for intolerance. Practice basic principles or cleanliness and hygiene. Don’t hold up the line… whatever line that may be.

No matter what city you live in, be it New York City, Boston, Chicago, LA, Rome, Paris, Tokyo or Beijing, remember that there are different cultures and ways of operating. If you are visiting, figure these things out BEFORE you travel. The natives will thank you for it.

Now go! Get out there! Frolic wild and free through the streets! You now have the basic principles for functioning as a human!

Goodnight New York City, Goodnight moon

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xoxo

A New Yorker,

Shan Babe

 

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20 Things New Yorkers LOVE to HATE

20. The Weather

Let’s be real. This is pretty much the first thing out of any New Yorker’s mouth when it’s raining, snowing, cold, hot, windy, sunny, cloudy, or even a reasonable temperature. New Yorkers will never cease at the opportunity to complain about the weather.

Lately we’ve being going through the period of the “polar vortex” and some people have said that New York is not as cold as other places in the country.

Yes, we are aware.

HOWEVER, most of us don’t drive and then THIS happens:

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There is nothing worse than walking around on a rainy New York day and having the bottom half of your pants SOAKED in water, and then your umbrella turning inside out, ruining your perfectly straightened hair and causing your mascara to run all over your face.

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DON’T even get me started on the summer months…

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Although I’ll be completely honest, when people ask me if I would rather live anywhere else, I say no.

I grew up in Cleveland, where the weather was even more bat-shit crazy than here… I’ll survive.

19. Slow Walkers

We live in New York.

WE HAVE PLACES TO BE!!!!

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GET OUT OF MY WAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY

At least if you are going to be slow, please do not go all “Sex and The City” style on me and hold hands with your girlfriends and TAKE UP THE ENTIRE SIDEWALK.  That is NOT how people walk here, despite what every movie or television show you’ve seen about New York tells you.

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18. Hipsters

I actually have a lot of love for Hipsters. I also dress like one from time to time (those clothes are COMFY).

But I think the general consensus on why New Yorkers hate hipsters, is the pretentious attitude that goes along with the hipster persona.

Especially when this is true:

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There is nothing worse than getting in a conversation with a hipster and them making you feel bad about literally every life choice you’ve ever made.

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Or worse: makes you feel like an idiot for not knowing “that band” or shuns you for being “so mainstream.”

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To which I reply:

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17. Train Construction/Planned Service Changes

Oh that’s cute… you wanted to take that train from Midtown Manhattan to Brooklyn???

NOPE

You are going to have to transfer at least twice, wait 20 minutes between trains and then pack yourself like a fucking sardine into the car because everyone else is trying to do the same thing as you.

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16. The people that would rather live in LA than New York, but still live here…

Don’t complain to me how you hate everything about New York and can’t wait to move to LA.

And how New York is “so over,” and the industry is “all in LA.”

Just fucking do it!

No one is keeping you here!

Don’t sit around and shit on my city!

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17. Hot Garbage

Here is the evolution of smelling hot garbage in July.

At first you’re like:

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Then you’re like:

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Then it really starts to hit you and you’re like:

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Then you just get furious and you’re like:

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Then you cry:

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16. No Seamless or GrubHub delivery from a restaurant.

Wait??? We have to CALL and order our food? Or even worse… you don’t deliver??? I have to PICK IT UP!?!?!?

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15. Anyone with a flyer

No! I do NOT want to go to the strip club, buy anything from your shitty electronics store that has been going out of business for months, or a coupon for your dry cleaning service that will probably lose my favorite dress shirt.

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And when I ignore you, that is NOT an invitation to stick your flyer closer to my face.

14. Lines at Starbucks

Guy in front of you has a super complicated coffee order:

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Then I get up to the counter and order something super simple. WHY DOES IT TAKE SO LONG FOR YOU TO FILL UP MY LARGE COFFEE WITH ROOM!?!?!

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13. Trying to Hail a Cab and “gypsy” cabs slow down

I am a single, 20-something living in a big city.

No, I would not like to jump in your unmarked car and end up in the East River.

K Thanks.

12. Pole Leaners

It’s okay, I didn’t want to grab on to a pole during rush hour on the subway or anything.

Clearly you are the ONLY ONE on the train right now because CLEARLY this is your own personal train.

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To you, I throw SHADE:

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11. Taxi drivers that treat you like tourists

I asked you to use the West Side Highway. But instead you chose to drive down Broadway… on a Friday night… at dinnertime.

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You’re not getting a good tip.

10. TOURISTS

I’m always happy to help a nice tourist with directions. I’m incredibly patient about answering questions. But DO NOT come to New York without doing your research.

This video will help you:

And you may THINK you look like this when you’re walking around the city:

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But you really look like this:

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We can spot you from a mile away.

9. Time Square/Herald Square

Every time I’m in these areas.

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And then I just start plowing through the rows and ROWS of clueless people standing everywhere.

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8. Hearing “IT’S SHOW TIME” on a subway train

There’s always a night on the train when my favorite song will come on my phone, and I’m quietly reading my New York Magazine. Content. Happy. Minding my own business…

“IT’S SHOW TIME!”

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7. Having to Leave your Burrough

You live out at the end of the J line?

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You’re silly.

6. “Sorry, we’re CASH ONLY” 

You get through your entire order at a restaurant/bar and then they’re like…

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So then you’re like…

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5. RENT

The rent is too damn high! Tell em Jimmy McMillan! LIKE A BOSS

4. Crowded, Sweaty, Loud Bars

Your friend drags you out to the hottest new club…

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And you are bumping into everyone, spilling your drink all over your brand new dress.

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So then you just say fuck it, and make due.

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3. Alcohol Prices

If you’re like me, you enjoy going out on the weekends… and the weekdays… and Sunday during the day… and sometimes during the day in general…

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So you go to a cute, new cocktail place and try out one of the fancy bourbon drinks.

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“That will be $27.50. Would you like to open a tab?”

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But you pay anyway… because you want to get drunk.

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2. Time Warner Cable

They may wish to provide you with top-quality customer service…

But they won’t.

You want to pay a reasonable amount for cable and internet and still get the speed you need as well as all the channels you want???

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Then you’ll tell them how another company quoted you something much less for an exorbitant amount more, but they don’t care.

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Then you cry.

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1. Dating

Dating in New York is a tricky one.

Usually the first date is a whirlwind of warm fuzzies. You feel like you’ve FINALLY made a connection with someone in a city with literally millions of people.

And there is cuteness…

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And cuddling…

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Then sometime after this, the other person’s texts start to get shorter and shorter. And then they eventually disappear off the face of the earth.

And you’re all like, “What the hell happened??”

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Then the overanalyzing starts.

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And then you’ll casually text about meeting up, because you think there still might be hope.

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And then you will see a “read receipt” that says the other person read that text, but get a text two days later saying, “SO SORRY! Just now seeing this… sorry I’ve been SO busy with work.”

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Until you finally decide you’re going to confront this ass hole for making you a crazy bitch.

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Then one the rage is over, acceptance sets in. You become your rational self again, and realize that it was the other person, not you.

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Until your best friend tells you they just got engaged…

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Then you’ll talk behind her back because you’ve just lost another single friend… leaving you out in the cruel world of dating.

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Rinse and repeat.

Happy Saturday! 🙂

Love,

Shan Baby

What New York City has taught me about Life

Tuesday, June 4th 2013 marked the one year mark of when I moved to my favorite place on planet earth, New York City.

Oh boy has it been a wild ride…

So I’ve been compiling a mental list of what New York has taught me in these past 369 days (June 4th + four days… I’m so FAHHHKIN SMAAAAHHHHHT) and here’s what I’ve come up with.

1. Life is tough. Get a helmet. And watch out for the yellow ones… they don’t stop…

2. Life never slows down. And watch out for the yellow ones, they are fast AND don’t stop… Ever.

3. Life is full of disappointments, but the bar is usually open till 4 am, so that makes the disappointments easier…

4. Sleep is important, but life will not slow down so you can catch some Zs. New York is the city that never sleeps… therefore, I do NOT sleep. When I left Berklee where I had two jobs, a band, and class, I thought I would inevitably get more sleep. WRONG. Sleep is a rare gift.

(and the bar is open till 4 am… so that REALLY does not help)

5. Talent is everywhere. There is ALWAYS someone more talented, prettier, thinner, more fashionable, friendlier, classier, a better fit, better connected, with more money and a tighter ass than you. But the bar is open until 4 am, where you can talk shit about that person who is “more ________” than you, and then cry about how much of a hot mess you are.

6. However, there will ALWAYS be a more dismal hot mess than you. So you can feel better knowing that there is always someone is in a worse situation, who most likely admires you for your talent, beauty, perseverance, and excellent ass.

7. There are a LOT of different people in this world with a LOT of different views, beliefs, religions, customs, sexualities, etc, etc. People who are constantly judging one another for our differences are the people who are so insecure about their own views, beliefs, religions, custom or sexuality, that they project it on others. Tolerance is a virtue.

8. Dating is just as exhausting as it is exciting… but mostly just exhausting. No more are the days when I used to get giggly and nervous, making sure every hair was in place, my makeup was perfect, and outfit was fashionable. Dating is work. Plain and simple. However, men are as disposable as those annoying flyers that the comedians hand out in Times Square. They are also really annoying like those comedians in Times Square…

9. Cats have nine lives, we don’t. So SERIOUSLY watch out for rowdy taxi drivers and people who like to push people on the subway tracks.  Hashtag #seriously

10. Living in a city that is full of successful women, makes me realize how much I DON’T need a man to tell me what I’m worth. Period.

11. Loneliness can sometimes be a good thing. Learning how to be independent in a city where people don’t care if you thrive or die is imperative for success. I’ve learned more about myself in the past year than I learned in all my college years combined.

12. If it is possible to hail a taxi in the pouring rain at rush hour on a Friday, anything is possible… including being a singer for a living. Performing is a lot easier than dealing with New York traffic.

13. Pizza is not a food group. 

14. Life is expensive. Good thing I’m a chick who can turn a smile into a free drink.

And finally…

15. I am in control of my own destiny. I can choose to let this crazy city define who I am and how I’ll feel at any given moment. OR I can choose to see New York as the crazy, beautiful city that it is. Good and bad. If I’ve learned ANYTHING this past year, it’s that you have a CHOICE about how you let any situation make you feel. I’ve been jerked in every direction by the music industry, casting directors, men, friends, bad weather, subway train delays, unfriendly Upper East Siders, Brooklyn hipsters, a hurricane… you name it! But the little beautiful moments in between the stress and no sleep and parties till 4 am and inhaling of taxi cab fumes remind me that I live the life I’ve always dreamed I’d live!

I’ve spent the last year accumulating amazing experiences, hanging out with new and old friends, and racking up stories SO juicy that sometimes I can’t believe they really happened to me. (Hello! Meeting Robin Williams on the A Train!?!?)

Good things.

All good things.

Aaaaaaaand the bar is open until 4 am…

xoxo

Shannon Rose Allen

BOOBS! …and other random thoughts…

So today when I was on my way to work, I read that Sharon Osbourne underwent a double mastectomy after finding out that she carried the breast cancer gene.

All the sudden I almost had a heart attack.

Not because this is necessarily shocking news, because I feel like Sharon made a smart move.  However, it just made me remember that I’ve been putting off a task since my mom died: Getting tested for the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes.

Now… my Aunt (my mom’s sister) was tested about a year ago, and she did NOT have the gene.  BUT, my Aunt (my dad’s sister) had breast cancer when I was younger and THANKFULLY caught it early enough to survive.

The fact that I have breast cancer on both sides SCARES THE FUCKING SHIT OUT OF ME.

I need to EVENTUALLY buck up and get tested.

So, needless to say, I was feeling pretty shitty my entire subway ride to work today, but then I get to work and find this video posted by a friend on my Facebook wall…

And it made me feel SO much better 😉

WHEN I get tested, and IF I have either of these genes, I will make the appropriate decision for me….

But until then… I can watch hot men tell me about checking for lumps 🙂

IN OTHER NEWS!

I know some people (mostly men in their 20s) were pissed about my last post.

Guess what: I don’t take back what I said. Too bad. If you don’t like it, you can either A) stop reading my blog or B) FUCK OFF… because I don’t care if you think that I should make a distinction between “boys” and “men” or that you think my blog posts make “no sense” because you just want to be a dick-wad.

Congrats to you, “clever” men… no boys… no guys… no… horses? pigs? man-bear-pig? Who fucking cares. YOU have officially made it on to my list of ASS HOLES! Hooray!

And for those inquiring: NO, that post was NOT just about a single, human being. It was about several of them. In fact, it was about pretty much every person of the male species (gays excluded) that I’ve met here in this lovely city of mine.

There: that felt good. I’m really not mad… I just needed to let out that steam…

Feels great

IN OTHER, OTHER NEWS…

It’s Thanksgiving soon! It will be nice to get out of New York for a few days… and eat. and eat. and drink.

IN OTHER, OTHER, OTHER NEWS…

I’m reading Jenny Lawson’s book: “Let’s Pretend this Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir)” and I think it’s just about the funniest thing I’ve ever read.  People have looked at me cross-eyed on the train because I break out into random fits of laughter on my daily commute.

You can check her out here: http://thebloggess.com/

I was reading her book today and came across this gem that described EXACTLY how I was feeling today…

“Women scare me enough, but bloggers can be even more frightening to deal with. Most bloggers are emotionally unstable and are often awkward in social situations, which is why so many of us turned to blogging in the first place.  Also, they are always looking for something to write about, so if you fuck something up it will be blogged, Facebooked, and retweeted until your death.” -Jenny Lawson

A. Men.

This woman wrote down all the twisted things that everyone WISHES they could say, but they don’t.

I. Love. Her.

AND FINALLY… In my final tidbit of the night.

I’m hoping to launch my campaign either on my birthday (December 20th) or in early January.

If you haven’t watched the video… please watch… and share 🙂

I hope I haven’t pissed to many people off tonight. If I have… I’m sorry, I’m not sorry.

Shannon Allen

I made it through the STORM!

Hello friends,

I apologize that it has taken so long for me to get a new post to you all.

As you can imagine… it’s been pretty crazy here in NYC.

First of all: Yes, I am safe.  Luckily I live in the Upper, Upper, (Upper) West Side, so we didn’t get his as bad as lower Manhattan.  Our light flickered a little bit, but we never lost power.

However… this happened

I lied… that didn’t actually happen… at all.  But I DO wish that happened as opposed to what actually DID happen.  Some of my friends are still without power and I know some people who have flooded houses in Long Island.  My heart especially goes out to all the patients of NYU’s hospital who had to be taken elsewhere after the backup generator failed.  Those doctors, nurses and EMTs are truly heroes.

Now that the city is starting to get back to normal though… I just have to say:

New Yorkers get STUPID in the face of a natural disaster.  Apparently when the MTA shuts down, ever single New Yorkers BRAIN also shuts down.  I watched a cyclist riding in the middle of the street, who tried to ride his bike between an ambulance with its sirens on and a completely over capacity city bus… GOING THE WRONG WAY. Seriously dude!?

Or how about at the grocery store.  Just because the city is out of commission, does NOT give you permission to mull over a bag of Cheetos for FIVE minutes at the checkout counter.  THEY ARE FUCKING CHEETOS. I’m pretty sure most New Yorkers could cut out their sodium intake anyway.

Don’t even get me started about Starbucks.  I went there yesterday to grab an iced coffee, since the branch near me opened up again, and EVERYONE WAS FREAKING OUT.  One day without your triple, caramel, mocha, lattee, pumpkin spice, extra whipped cream, frappe, and you all go NUTS! I felt bad for the poor employees who CLEARLY did not think they would be working so soon after the storm, get badgered by these idiots and I just wanted to yell at them and say: IT’S JUST FUCKING COFFEE!

Seriously New Yorkers of my neighborhood: Be THANKFUL that you have power, an open grocery store and a Starbucks! There are people in this city without power, heat, hot food, and… OH YEAH… they just lost their possessions in THE STORM!

Anyway… I’m really not that unhappy… I just think it’s kind of nuts of crazy people get during natural disasters.  It’s like they throw out all human decency just because the city is trying to turn itself back on.

In other news: This is hysterical:

Also, a quick update with my music.

I have been writing like a MAD WOMAN and hope to have my campaign up and running by later December or the 1st of the New Year.  I tried to record myself singing my new song, Never Give In, but I just wrote it yesterday, and it looked stupid when I kept referencing the lyrics on my chart. I’m REALLY proud of this song, and I’m thinking it might be the “theme” song of my breast cancer campaign.

Until next time… everyone stay safe and please don’t yell at any Starbucks employees.

Shannon

NYC vs. LA

For those of you who don’t know… I took a week-long trip to LA.

It all started when I got an executive callback for the NBC show, The Voice, back in August.

Yes.

I got a callback from The Voice.

I flew out to LA last Sunday, determined to show NBC that I was the best damn singer/performer that they’d ever seen!

Well. They cut me.

I was shocked, especially since I gave my best audition to date, but that’s show business people!

The real story of this blog post starts when I asked miss Christina Brehm to pick me up from the hotel after I got cut.

The producers (who were incredibly nice and AWESOME) were nice enough to delay my flight so that I could spend the rest of the week with my best friend on the West Coast.

And then began one of the CRAZIEST, most memorable, half weeks of my life!

Let’s just say it was so nuts that I feel like it’s best left as a big secret to live on in infamy in my own brain.

But for those of you who want hints as to what this infamy entailed….

Here is “Shannon Allen’s guide to NYC vs. LA”

We’ll start off easy.

1. In LA, you drive. In NYC, you walk, take the subway… or if you have expendable cash… take a cab.

2. In LA, we have beaches. In NYC, you have Central Park.

3. In LA, you speak in highways and exits (Get off the 101 and take Mullholand, to blah blah blah blah.. (I have no clue). In NYC you speak in cross streets (drop me off at 59th and Broadway)

4. In LA, everyone smokes weed. In NYC… everyone smokes weed.

5. In LA, everyone is a bartender/actress/model/musician. In NYC, everyone is a bartender/broadway hopeful/artist/musician.

6. In LA, you have big, high gates. in NYC, you have doormen.

7. In LA, you have traffic. In NYC, you have train delays

These are some of the more obvious differences.

Now here is “Shannon Allen’s PERSONAL guide to NYC vs. LA”

1. In NYC, all my friends are gay. In LA, all my friends are lesbians. (Hey… I’m just a Queen Queen, what can I say??)

2. In NYC, I’m the “cool” girl FRIEND who watches football with the guys, talk politics, and music. In LA, I’m the cute, mysterious girl from New York who works in the music industry.

3. In NYC, I buy my own drinks or go to the gay bars when they have open bar. In LA, boys (and girls) buy me drinks… LOTS of drinks…

4. In NYC, I have yet to have my first New York date. In LA, I met a boy who wants to take me on a date when he comes to visit.

5. In NYC, I have yet to have my first New York kiss. In LA, I had…. a few kisses…

6. In NYC, everyone likes that I can identify my surroundings by cross streets (or else it’s a pain in the ASS to meet up with friends.) In LA, everyone rolls their eyes when I talk about that place on 101 and Broadway that has the BEST BRUNCH in town.

7. In NYC, I drink whiskey, beer, and wine, then go out at 4 a.m. for a fresh slice of New York style pizza. In LA, I drink cocktails… and whiskey, beer and wine… and get sick.

8. In NYC, I live in the “poor” part of town. In LA, no one fucking knows me. Hell! I live in Beverly Hills if that’s what you wanna hear! 🙂

9. In NYC, I take a walk in Central Park, and see a bum shitting on a tree. In LA, I walk a canyon and am almost on the show where Betty White has old people prank young people. Fucking NUTS!

And finally… my favorite comparison (although there can never be a comparison between these two entities) between NYC and LA…

10. In NYC, my #1 bitty/partner-in-crime/singing buddy on the subway/beer drinking bimbo/fruit fly dancing/shake our asses in the street and not give a shit/wing-woman is Miss Jennifer Chianesi AKA Lady Nesi.  In LA, my #1 bestie/beautiful blonde babe/make me feel okay when I embarrass myself/watch ridiculous chick flicks/stand up for what we believe in till we die/dancing divas/walking around the city telling people who don’t like us to “FUCK OFF”/cry on each other’s shoulders/hold each others’ hair back/wing-woman is Miss Christina Brehm AKA Brehmy.

I wish I could carry them both in my pockets, along with all my other best friends from around the country.

And SPEAKING of best friends… don’t think that the rest of you aren’t loved!!! You know at my wedding I’m going to have just as many bridesmaids as bridesmen. Hay Hay!

Love the bi-coastal, big booty, babe who can pick up guys around the world, Lady Business chick,

Shannon Fucking Allen.

I just met Robin Williams on the Subway

I just met Robin Williams on the Subway.

Yep.

That just happened to me.

But you know what… tonight’s blog post isn’t just about Robin Williams, it’s about another man I met on the subway tonight: Tom.

So I’m sitting on the A train after a nine-hour day at work… pretty tired, reading an enthralling story in Rolling Stone about an Occupy Cleveland entrapment case, when all the sudden I hear someone mention Robin Williams.

The man across from me is upper-middle aged, has a pony tail, chin scruff and a goofy looking grin on his face.  He looks at me and says, “I was just going to admire your Beatles t-shirt, but now apparently Robin Williams is riding the train! How cool is that!?”

I laughed because this guy was so friendly and jolly (just my kind of person) and we both took turns saying hello to Robin and getting pictures taken.  I asked Robin about my late Aunt Connie, because I knew they were friends, and told him how she always spoke fondly of him.  He looked a little sad, and said that she was a wonderful woman.  It warmed my heart.

I CAN’T BELIEVE IT! First of all, someone of his status could definitely afford to take a fancy town car around Manhattan, instead of taking the subway.  That was my first indication that he was a wonderful man.  And secondly, how does this man have so much patience!?! Granted, most of the people on the subway train didn’t bother him, but can you imagine how much patience he must have to let people come up to him and sing his praises after DECADES of being in the business.

So anyway… Robin left at Canal street, and that’s when Tom and I picked up our conversation.

Now Tom is a 50-something veteran who works with homeless veterans in the city to help get them work. He has them cleaning the streets, training seeing eye dogs and helping cater to the Central Park horses.  He talked about his job as if he was in the entertainment industry.  This man could not be happier or full of life.

We started laughing about our crazy celeb sighting and he asked me a little bit about myself.  I told him I was a performer at heart, but have a full-time job in the industry.  He, being a guitar player himself, started talking to me about the Beatles and all the bands he grew up listening to.

I really don’t know why I had such a profound connection to this man, but I could just see that he was truly a man who devoted himself entirely to others. I told him that I worked with many impoverished people when I lived in Cincinnati, and how I really admired the work he was doing.  I told him that my mother went to school for social work, and that I got my “bleeding heart” gene from my mom.

Once he found himself more comfortable with me, he told me that he recently found himself homeless and had to live in the very shelter that he WORKED at! Can you imagine the courage it took to put aside your pride and live in a homeless shelter as not a director, but as a peer.  This man, who devotes himself to helping people find jobs and re-attain their lives and dignity, can barely make enough to sustain himself.

I was moved. Actually… moved is an understatement. I was changed.

I then looked him directly in the eye, put my hand on his arm, and said, “The world truly needs more people like you.”

He turned away from me and I could tell he was fighting back tears and he said, “I’m just trying to spread my love around.”

I could go on and on about how this man changed me, but I think he just summed up and reinforced everything I’ve been telling myself for the past several months…

I’m just trying to spread my love around.

It’s moments like these that I’m glad I have a heart that is open to loving and helping others.

Shannon Rose Allen