What adjusting to life in NYC is like…
You’re no longer in Kansas anymore. You can’t believe you landed in Oz. But instead of a pristine Emerald City, you get a dirty concrete jungle filled with outrageous things.
You find that you’re angry, often asking yourself, “Why does every crazy thing in this city happen to me?!”
The first person you sublease from screws you over. Your metro card doesn’t work. You’re told that it’s impossible to make friends. You almost get stabbed in a knife fight between a couple of thugs and a homeless man on the subway. The first guy you go out on a date with turns out to be a complete and total asshole. You lose your metro card. You’re constantly harassed and objectified by shady men. You have to move four times in the span of five months. It rains during your last move, and you have no friends to help you. You’re perpetually broke because everything is overpriced. The list just keeps growing, along with your anger, and all you can think about is going Kung Fu Panda on everything in sight.
After you’ve gotten over your anger, you attempt to bargain with yourself, bargain with this city. You say things like, “Everything will get easier if I can just survive one more hour, day, week, or month here — if I can just keep searching for the perfect job, friends, and place to live here. Please, please, please just let things get better, if I can do X, Y, and Z here.”
Once you realize that your bargaining is futile, that things aren’t meant to get easier or better — no matter how long you wait — or how hard you try — you find yourself deeply depressed. You’re reduced to a sobbing mess, and because you live in a shoe box sized apartment with multiple roommates you barely know, the only place you can really cry without them hearing you is in the shower. Yes, you’ve become this sad man:
When you’ve finally pushed past the denial, anger, bargaining, and tears, there is only one thing left to do — accept the fact that you are here, that this city will never change for you, and that there is no turning back because you’ve already invested too much time and money to live here. Once you’ve accepted this, you finally learn to shrug off every crazy little thing that happens to you, say “f**k it all,” and move on in what I like to call true New York fashion…