City sidewalks, busy sidewalks, it’s Christmas time in New York City.
I worked at Target in high school and it made me hate Christmas. I used to love Christmas, but it took a couple years to get over the disgust I felt after witnessing people fight for Black Friday deals, complain about the parking lot and get frustrated about finding last-minute gifts. Then after Christmas the returns started. People got mad at us for not taking back the software they already opened or the old camera they put in the new camera box and tried to return.
I think my parents would attest to the fact that I was an unpleasant person after my shifts. They were nice not to roll their eyes and say, “Candace, have a snack and go take a nap!” They’re much more mature than I am.
In the 14 or so years since I quit Target, I learned to love the cheery spirits, the family time, the good food and drink, the holiday movies and specials!
It pains me to admit New York brings back some of those Target memories. Don’t get me wrong, the city is gorgeous all dressed up for Christmas. It just glistens. People are happily going to the American Girl store, the Lego store and Bloomingdale’s. They go ice skating at Rockefeller Center, Bryant Park or Central Park. They take in a show on Broadway. I support all these things. They’re so fun!
I enjoy taking in the holiday display early in the morning when it’s not crowded. Last year, I walked down 5th Avenue to get to the office. It was the magic hour when window displays are being set up and vendors are handing out samples. Loved that.
The problem is that while visitors took the day off to have a New York Christmas experience, the rest of us have to go to work and school and home.
The Radio City Christmas Spectacular starts doing multiple shows in November. A show is always starting or ending, which means there is always a crowd out front taking pictures or stopping to consult a map or gather the group. Walking the one block from my office to the subway entrance takes me past the front of Radio City. I have to push through the crowds and photo bomb pictures. But it’s not just tourists behaving badly. Here are some New York behaviors that seem to get amplified at holiday time and drive me crazy:
- When people lean against the subway poles. What are you, a pole dancer? Other people want to hold onto that pole so we don’t fall over and take down half a dozen people in the process.
- When people put their bags on the seat next to them or sit sideways, taking up two seats, and don’t make any attempt at moving for others.
- When able-bodied adults don’t give up their seats for little children.
- When people walk down the street while on the phone, therefore walking slowly and/or haphazardly.
- When cars blow through stop signs and then glare at the pedestrians (read: Me) in the intersection who point at the stop sign.
- When people sit on the subway steps. First, gross! Second, get out of the way!
- When people stand in front of the doors on the subway and don’t move. I know in front of the doors is the coveted place. That’s my favorite, too, but you have to be on the side that isn’t opening or step aside to let people on or off. Get it together, clowns!
- At major stops, when half the train is getting off, yet people push their way to the doors to get off first. I promise you’ll get off this train. Just be patient.
OK I’m done. Enjoy the magic season. Merry Christmas!