New York City has its fair share of scenic postcards; you can pick up a bunch of them at any souvenir shop within walking distance of the Empire State Building. They are almost always the same: NYC skyscrapers taking center stage, usually at night, with twinkling building lights in place of stars. Lower Manhattan and Midtown are popular postcard subjects here, as are the Statue of Liberty and Brooklyn Bridge. But what if we offered more realistic postcards? Showing life in NYC as it often is (abrasive and extreme), instead of its easily romanticized form?

For example, we know that in places like Miami Beach, the aquamarine waters lap sandy beaches for consistently picture-perfect postcards. But what if you go to the beach in the Big Apple? For one, we do not call it that, no matter how many times you've seen it on a postcard. Secondly, it looks like this.

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Photo taken in Rockaway, summer of 2018. (Scott Lynch / Gothamist)

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(Original photo via benzadrine on flickr)

Yes, we've made some realistic postcards for you—these are focusing on the city's worst season: Summer, and we'll be rolling out more as the city continues to dazzle us with its everyday magic. Whether you're a New Yorker or a newbie or a tourist, you can print these out and send them back to your friends and family at home, who only ever see your Instagram feed where you're pushing out the most idyllic version of this city you can capture.

Now let's make some more memories. If you see a realistic NYC postcard tableau unfurl in front of you, take a photo and send it to tips@gothamist.com (subject: WISH U WERE HERE) and we'll make it happen. Need some inspiration? Look no further than the below tweet.

There's nothing like a little outdoor dining experience, especially in New York City, where you can dig into a $28 lobster roll as you become immersed in the sights (dogs peeing, bedbug mattresses) and sounds (screaming, honking) of the greatest metropolis on Earth. Truly though, we wouldn't want to live anywhere else.