Movie Magic & Footpath Follies

Posted: 14 April 2010 in New York City

If you ever seen a movie about the wonder that is New York City, and hope to experience it first hand, you might be somewhat dissapointed. For one simple reason: the crowds. Everything in New York, or any popular destination, can be exciting and fulfilling, unless it’s covered with so many people you are unable to see the landmark. I discovered the way to make Movie Magic happen in the Big Apple! The answer was so simple. If you want picturesque ice skating, with beautiful weather, a handful of people, surrounded by friends, unlimited skating, lots of food, and at a great price, you simply have to be in a movie!  When I had attempted the magic of ice skating on my own, we spent half the day trekking the four miles to find the “better” rink… we still ended up tripping over litters of children and lunatic bmx hockey skaters. But low and behold! Last week, I had the opportunity to ice skate in the movie The Dark Fields. Granted this included twelve exhausting hours of skating, yet I relished the moment. I had a picturesque sky line with beautiful weather; friends to talk to; free food all day long; and oh yeah, I got paid to do it. I made sure to take a moment and really soak in the full effect and enjoy my movie moment. And it was tourist free!

It’s not that New Yorkers dislike tourists. We just don’t understand why people turn off their brains when they arrive in New York. When you go to London, there are very explicit instructions, posted and yelled out, to keep right when you saunter. However, New York tourists seem to find a way to get in the way at all times of the day.  I came across a group of four women, clearly they spoke English, and clearly they were blocking all access in and out of the subway entrance. It took them a few seconds to realize they were headed in the right direction, and as they snailed their way down into the subway, they took the time to imitate agitated New Yorkers complaining about their lack of movement and walking skills. Ironically they couldn’t take their own advice. The humor of the situation was the only reason I didn’t throw something at them.

When traversing in New York on foot (as one typically does), try and avoid these footpath follies, and New Yorkers might not kill you in your sleep:

1. Time’s Square is the worst place to meet people. Don’t clog the road by gathering in a stand still of 18 people at the TGIF, because Sally is running late.

2. Don’t stop walking because you saw something shinny. Be curteous enough to see if someone is close on your heels, and perhaps step to the side.

3. Leave an open space next to you on escalators. Not everyone wants to just hang ten.

4. Don’t use your child as a weapon. Just because their little, doesn’t mean they are indestructable. Not everyone is going to step aside for the munchkin, especially if they are too short to be noticed.

5. Standing at the bottom of a staircase, in front of a doorway, or blocking the subway turnstile is just inconsiderate. And we are not afraid to hit you.

6. Don’t tell people to move out of your camera shot. If they’re a local, they’ll be halfway down the block in ten seconds anyway.

7. If traffic is busy. Think thin. Walking three and four across, whilst linking arms, is just absurd.

8. Don’t spit. No, really. Especially if you chew tobacco. You may think it’s going in the street, but as someone who has been unintentionally spat upon… just fight the urge.

Voyage on!



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