Safe Tourism in New York

Were you ever in New York? Isn’t it great? Isn’t New York the coolest place ever? I think you’ll find it is. I love New York and I’m only sorry it took me so long to visit it for the first time. Some other time, I’ll tell you about the visit I made there with Wrinkly Joe. Eh, on second thoughts, no, actually. In fact, I won’t.

The first time I went to New York, I was a simple small-town Irish guy, as I remain to this day. A harmless poor devil, devoid of guile, innocent, naive and generally gormless.

Forrest Gump.

I had a friend, Tom, who lived in Weehawken – a five-minute boat ride across the East River from Manhattan. He lived in this beautiful clapboard Victorian mansion in a mature old neighbourhood where squirrels ran along branches and people said goodnight to each other when they walked their dogs. You could stand on the front steps of Tom’s house and look out across the river, as I did the first night I arrived jetlagged. You look across the river and there it is: this amazing Manhattan thing. You look up at this wall of light and you’re looking straight up 42nd Street and all you can say is Jesus Christ!

I thought the Chrysler Building was great. I stood there, like the hick that I am, gazing up at it, looking for Batman just like in all those clichés about visitors to New York. Wandering around, staring up at the skyscrapers. Great. But I mean, this place has to be stared at — how else are you going to see the gargoyles? How else are you going to see Bruce Willis hanging on for his life?

And yet. And yet, you don’t really want to look like a tourist. We all know what happens to people in New York staring up at skyscrapers, don’t we? Yes. We do. The word goes out to every mugger within five miles. There’s a tourist staring up at a building. Get the muddafukka!

What to do? I had an idea while staring up at the Chrysler Building that’s going to make us all rich. It’s  a money-maker, I’m certain.

Here’s the plan. I’ll buy thousands of cheap sunglasses and hire a disbarred optician to fit them with very small mirrors angled upwards like a periscope. Triangular prisms would do too. You can walk around staring up at the buildings and nobody thinks you’re a stranger in town.

I’ll add accessories – a range of goods. For instance, you’re staring at your mirrors, so you bump into people all the time. Watch where you’re walkin’, Buddy!

No problem. My people will sell you a telescopic white cane to go with the dark glasses. Everyone thinks you’re blind.

Jeez, man, I’m sorry. Here, let me help you across the street.

The cane folds into your pocket like a pen when you’re not using it. I’ll even sell you an enamelled cup with chip-marks out of it, to go with the ensemble, which is really first-class. Invest in this kit, you can go to New York, stare at as many skyscrapers as you want, cause no offence, don’t get mugged and go home with a cup-full of dollars. The whole kit pays for itself in a morning. This will sell. Look at the potential. Hordes of blind Japanese people, with cameras.

What a marketing brain! We’ll all be rich.

6 replies on “Safe Tourism in New York”

New York is wonderful, isn’t it? I’m actually looking at a print of the Chrysler Building from the perspective of the Empire State Building when it was being built as I type.

I think you can look up. A lot of New Yorkers take great pride in their city and like it when people appreciate it.

The Chrysler is my favourite building.

Too bad you didn’t get to see the cesspool of Times Square before they Disneyfied it.

Sad to say I think you missed your moment on this one, Bock. Post Guliani, post 9/11 Noo York isn’t the same place it was in the last century. These days you don’t even have to take your luggage tags off on the bus into Grand Central for fear they will attract slimebag larcenists like the scent of blood in shark infested waters. Native New Yorkers look up at the skyscrapers all the time just to make sure they’re not about to collapse in smoke and flames on top of them. Still a great city though. But the idea would still work in Chicago or Houston, I think.

PS Thanks for your thanks on my support. Shucks, it was nothing:-)

Limerick man here – living in NY for 15 years, 10 years in Manhattan. Perfectly reasonable for the locals to stare at the sights. In fact one of my favourite pastimes is to bring visitors around as I could admire the city as a tourist for a change.

New York holds many hidden gems and is a city so large and it is common to discover new places all the time just walking around.

Take a ride up to the top of the Rock (Roeckeffeler Center) and view the city from a whole new perspective.

Love the blog

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