I’m living a life of a post graduate in a pre-New Yorker way– discovering how to live in the big city, fresh out of college. I thought it important to read up on some New York City literature in order to accrue as much advice as possible to help me along the way in Manhattan, so I recently picked up NYC Student Guide. http://campusclipper.com/blog/?page_id=785
I realize that I’m not a “student” anymore, but I’m still on that playing field, and this book had all the tips and information I needed from– from a fellow student’s perspective– to make it in the city. Just in the first few pages I realized how many “unwritten rules” I was breaking on the subway, like “no staring” at people. I come from the South where you make eye contact with others and give them the “head nod.” Evidently, you’re not supposed to do that, which might explain people moving away from me and reciprocating with threatening glares.
Finally, I have a guide book feeding me what I want out of the city, and not some monotonous New York City guide novel by a panel of “certified travel experts” in their 60’s. I’m a foodie to the extreme, and NYC boasts the best of the best restaurants in the world. Unfortunately, I’ve accumulated a hellacious amount of college debt, and don’t have deep pockets to satiate the hungry beast within me. It’s always more helpful to get someone’s advice who’s been in your shoes, and can tell you the cheap spots to eat in a new city.
I went to school at Auburn University in Alabama. I could rent a mansion for what I pay here, and buy 5 pitchers of beer for every on mug I buy at a NYC bar. A few NYC students in the NYC Student Guide helped dumb it down for me so I wouldn’t be dropping my whole paycheck on overpriced meals. They have the inside scoop on cheap burger joints, how to cook meals with what you have at home, and what makes for a great cocktail. Already I can feel myself becoming more of a Yankee… just kidding, the South will rise again!
As a newcomer to the city, and fresh out of the college scene, it’s totally revitalizing to read the NYC Student Guide and feel connected to the college body again. I feel like I’m being included in the cool group of kids on NYC’s city wide campus life– tips and tricks to integrate into the heart of the apple. I found out how to discover concerts in the city and how to snag cheap tickets. Also, I read about some awesome date ideas, so whenever I decide to break up with Single McLoneliness, I can seduce a city girl into a night on the town.
And by seduce, I mean mumble my way into a pity date.
It might help if I start dressing like a New Yorker, which means looking somewhat fashionable. New York is a breeding ground of hipsters–flaunting skinny jeans, chic prints, and really cool jackets. The NYC Student Guide gave this hopeless Southern boy some insight on where I can pick up some reasonably priced threads so that I stand a chance of not looking like I just walked out of the closet from 2001.
Since I’ve arrived to the city, I’ve been exhausted just from being here. Living in city is like a full time mental and physical workout, leaving you drained by the end of the day.
My first Snow Challenge
It’s all about building up stamina. And drinking copious amounts of coffee. However I found out about a few good ways to join the fitness scene in the city thanks to the student guide. I haven’t worked out at the gym in over a month and I can feel myself getting weaker. Turns out, you can haggle over gym prices for your monthly fee, which would be great so I could afford to build back some muscle.
Finding jobs in the city is insane.
I’m still in that student/recent graduate phase where it seems like no one wants to hire me for lack of experience in the real world. How the hell do I get real world experience if no one will give me the opportunity?
The best option? Internships. Package your skill sets, education, and work experience in a way that makes prospective employers say, “Daddy likey.” But not in a creepy, sexual harassment sort of way.
The NYC students from the guide book wisely advised to apply to as many as possible, and be diligent in the internship search. My favorite piece of advice was to “be yourself.” Interns are a dime a dozen, but if you can separate yourself by showcasing your unique personality, then it’ll be beneficial to you and the employer. Use what your momma gave you (I wish I could make that sound sassier than it reads).
Like most guys in their 20’s, I suck at relationships. Keep a a few female friends and a guide book close to strategize your moves in the dating world. In the back of the guide book there’s some insight on communication and personal values to help you keep on your own track. I can feel myself sort of drifting as I walk through the city, but some good ole journaling everyday and reading experiences of others’ is a huge help in keeping me true to who I am.
Go out and get what you’re worth. Like my mom always tells me– don’t settle for good, wait for great!