Tuesday, January 23, 2007

New York Nabes 101 and why (some) Brooklynites bug me

New Yorkers have an amazing amount of neighborhood pride. West siders hate east siders because of the boring pack driven frat boys. East siders hate the west siders because of their lame Mommy and Me play dates on the Great Lawn. Downtowners can't stand uptowners because they aren't hip enough yet invade their precious territory on the weekend. Uptowners hate downtowners because they are pretentious as fuck and refuse to ride the subway past 14th street.

And it gets even more complicated. Manhattanites look down on the outer boroughs because they think there's nothing there worth seeing. Queens residents take pride in their diverse neighborhood and hate on homogenous rich Manhattanites. Bronx residents basically don't give a crap about anyone else and everyone else is just plain afraid of that borough.

And then there's the Brooklynites. Many Brooklynites are long term natives of Brooklyn and have become comfortable in their little section of town where chances are, they speak the same language as a lot of their neighbors and can shop in their familar ethnic food stores. For this they are thankful that they never have to leave Brooklyn.

But then there are recent Brooklyn transplants. Many were driven out of Manhattan as rental prices increased, and have settled into semi-posh neighborhoods where they can easily find cute cafes, great live music, and wonderful restaurants. These places tend to be even better than Manhattan cafes, venues and restaurants because they rely on word of mouth rather than pedestrian traffic. And after a while, these Brooklyn residents get spoiled and they refuse to even step foot in Manhattan if they don't have to. They mouth off about the big bad borough complaining about the crowds, the prices, and the lack of quaintness. They are, in my opinion, the snobbiest of them all. They forget to acknowledge the opportunity Manhattan gave them to build up, gentrify poor ethnic neighborhoods, and pay cheaper rent. If it weren't for all of the attractions from Manhattan, they most wouldn't have a job, and thus wouldn't have the means to fill their streets with fine boutiques and cheese shops. They hate on Manhattan after all Manhattan has given them. And to them I say, I hope a big ol' mall opens up in your neighborhood so you have to move again.