By Madison Buechler • December 18, 2017

New Yorkers Are Not Mean, Trust Us

If you’re big into believing stereotypes about places then you probably think that the streets of New York are filled with terrible, terrible people, that will shove you down and walk right over you. I’m here to tell you that couldn’t be further from the truth. New York is a mix of so many types of personalities that to be honest you rarely ever run into someone who is just downright mean.

To prove my theory to you I have asked some fellow students in the program about their experiences with native New Yorkers. Here are some of there stories...

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"Middle of the semester and I was like, you know before I came here I thought about doing animation, but then I just felt like because I had no experience I wouldn't be able to do it. But then midway through New York I was like "Well I'm in New York, I should pursue what I want to do and if I don't start at some point, how am I ever going to get the experience to feel like I could do it, unless I just do it? So I talked to my advisor and he put me in touch with Debra (an animation professional) and basically with no warning I emailed her and was like "Can I have an internship with you?" and she was like "I'm notactually working on any films at the moment" but even though she only knew me through one email she still felt like she really wanted to get me what I wanted even though she had never even met me. So she invited me to go to this 6 hour long seminar and she introduced me to teachers at this college and the head of the program was like "Yea, you can come be a TA. You can take classes here." And so basically I'm now, even though it's the middle of the semester and I have no experience in animation, a TA in an animating class and I'm auditing another one. And Debra also invited me to be her plus one to screenings on Sunday. She's just so nice. We were in that 6 hour seminar and it was really cold in there and she was like "I feel like I've known you for a year, cause we survived it." She's just great." -Maja Olsson

"I visited the library and I was trying to print something and so I went up and gave the woman my library card and was like "Hi, can I check out a computer?" and she looks down at my card and types the number in and is like "Natali Cavanagh. What a beautiful name." and I was like "Thanks?" She's just like "Yea, you sound like someone famous, Natali Cavanagh" and she starts pulling all of her co-workers around and is like "Isn't Natali Cavanagh such a great name?" It was very sweet." -Natali Cavanagh

Natali also went on to explain how she thinks that tourists are treated differently than locals, because typically locals are in such a hurry to get where they are going that if tourists get in the way it slows them and everyone around them down and it doesn't make the locals too happy, which is where she thinks the stereotype comes from. "I think the tourist stereotype is where the 'mean New Yorker' comes out, but when locals realize that 'oh, you're new here, you live here, you're living here, it's almost like we're kind of like oh we are all in this together, let me give you advice on how to survive"

"I held a really good conversation with a rando on the midnight train last night about Drag Queens all because he was wearing a Katya shirt, which I mistook for Alaska (both contestants from RuPaul's Drag Race). I also had a good conversation with someone about Hillary Clinton after I noticed him reading her book and asked him about it." -Hannah Pikaart

"I was running a quick errand and it was raining and I didn't have an umbrella and as I come to a crosswalk this guy behind me started having trouble with his giant umbrella because it was really windy and we both looked at each other and laughed and then he held the umbrella over both of us as we waited to cross and continued to walk alongside me with the umbrella for the next block until I had to make a turn. Just a friendly New Yorker or a soulmate in passing? We may never know." -Hannah Smith


Written by: Madison Buechler

Quotes by: Fellow NYAP Students Maja Olsson, Natali Cavanagh, Hannah Pikaart, Hannah Smith