Are you relatively new to this fine metropolis? Hey, don't be shy about it, everyone was new to New York at one time... except, of course, those battle-hardened residents who've lived here their whole lives and Know It All. One of these lifers works among us at Gothamist—publisher Jake Dobkin grew up in Park Slope and currently resides in Brooklyn Heights. He is now fielding questions—ask him anything by sending an email here, but be advised that Dobkin is "not sure you guys will be able to handle my realness." We can keep you anonymous if you prefer; just let us know what neighborhood you live in.
This week's question come from Texas:
I'm moving to NYC from Texas. Any tips for an an über Republican, Baptist thinking of taking up a space in Manhattan?
A Native New Yorker Replies:
Oh honey. New York City is fueled by the energy generated by consuming people like you, burning off all their prejudices and beliefs, and spitting them out, shaky and broke, at Port Authority with a one way ticket home. Seriously; the BTUs given by our human sacrifices of "real Americans" are enough to power most of hipster Brooklyn... so it's puzzling our Con Ed bills are so high.
As a Republican, you will follow the classic, soul-destroying arc of moving to Murray Hill, getting a job in PR but telling people you work in marketing, dating a series of pretty dickish Wall Street guys, moving in with one of them on the Upper East Side, having some ungrateful kids and moving to Ardsley to raise them to repeat the cycle unquestioningly—is that what you really want? Because it's a trick question: that fantasy went out with the 2008 crash, and now that PR firm is closed, your hedge fund boyfriend is spending all his time working on his b-school applications, and that home is in Yonkers and costs $4MM.
My recommendation is to compromise: stay in Texas, but move to Austin. It's cheaper and they've got almost all the same stores now, and one month a year all the douches you would've met in NYC will come to visit you at SXSW, where you'll have the privilege of sneering at them and calling them tourists.
Ask A Native New Yorker anything by emailing our Tips address here.
[Update: from time to time, the author may wish to add a thoughtful, non-sarcastic response to the question. This will be limited to one paragraph: "Seriously, the best advice is don't move here if you're a prejudiced Republican. If you must move here for work or medical reasons, expect to have your beliefs forcefully challenged. If you find you cannot change them, expect to have a bad time, even if you do locate yourself in a more conservative neighborhood like the Upper East Side- our most conservative neighborhood is going to be more liberal than your hometown's gayest bar. So if you do come, the best thing to do is embrace change and let your freak flag fly: move to Bushwick, get a job at NYPIRG, drink some 40s. Then go home at Christmas and scare the hell out of your parents. One thing New Yorkers do love is Southerners who have switched to our team."]