On that American by birth Cowgirl By Choice shirt: most New Yorkers don’t drive. I got a car for my 16th birthday in Seattle and drove everywhere because I had to due to lack of public transport. However I let my license expire when I was 19 and haven’t driven since then, which isn’t uncommon in NYC. As such: think of extremely busy streets (whether it be 5th Ave or Broadway or less known but still very busy streets like Houston or 14th st.) like highways. Would you just literally go from 70MPH to 0 and park your car in a center lane of I-5 at rush hour? Of course not. Feel free to consult your map but for the LOVE OF GOD please don’t do it on the middle of Canal street at 5pm. Go stand somewhere where you’re not blocking anyone. Many New Yorkers (including myself) have physically slammed into newcomers or tourists in lower Manhattan because we’re trying to arrange a meeting, coordinate dinner plans, and cross 7 blocks in 3 minutes all at the same time… when a newcomer decides to go from a modest pace to stopping in the middle of a busy street. Don’t do it.
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And one last no-no: don’t say hello or ask New Yorkers how they’re doing on the American by birth Cowgirl By Choice shirt. My extended family largely lives in Atlanta and in the south it’s not uncommon to ask strangers friendly questions. However if you want a depiction of how this will come across in NYC see the movie Borat. People will literally think you’re insane or want money if you approach them on the sidewalk or the subway to say hello or ask “how are you?”. It’s not because New Yorkers are rude. It’s just people tend to be very busy and if by chance they’re alone and not busy they’re probably feeling relieved to NOT have to interact with anyone. Asking for directions is different and people will generally do their best to help you. But the 1 train at rush hour is not a time to “meet the locals”, and if you watch Borat you’ll see New Yorkers doing everything from threatening physical violence to literally running away when the actor playing Borat is just pretending to be a foreigner trying to say hello.