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Friday, May 23, 2014


 New Yorkers sometimes have a bad reputation.  They are rude, aggressive, pushy and cold.  Some of this is true.  In a city as large as New York it is difficult to be friendly.  Friendly people get ripped off.  Polite people get taken advantage of.  Warm and fuzzy people are suckers.  In a big city you need to stay ever alert and vigilant of others who are out to take advantage of you, so yes, sometimes New Yorkers are rude, aggressive, pushy and cold.  However, when the chips are down, when help is needed, New Yorkers are as compassionate, helpful and downright nice as anyone else…maybe even more so.

One thing for sure, New Yorkers get stuff done, and they get it done quickly.  To get a taste of this, visit a New York Deli in the morning.  Don’t hem and haw over your order, there will be New Yorkers three deep ready to step ahead of you and shout their order.   Decide what you want before you even enter the Deli, and be ready to order as soon as the person on the other side of the counter makes eye contact.

Now you better be ready to pay, because your order will have been entered in seconds, your egg sandwich will be cooking and in less than a minute it will sail fully rapped from the grill dude for the man at the counter to grab one-handed above his head, slam it into a bag and tell you “$2.99 please!”  It is a thing of beauty.

New Yorkers get things done.

Many years ago while working for a large brokerage company we had a slight emergency.  I will not go into details because they would only bore you and I forget most of them anyway.  Suffice it to say some three-thousand security symbols from the Canadian Stock Exchange were accidently deleted by our good friends up North.   It was two o'clock, and those symbols needed to be added back by five o’clock or processing would be delayed and a whole lot of bad stuff would follow.

I got a call from up north.  “Can the computer guys reinstate yesterday’s file? Eh.”

Well yes, but this was years ago and it was not such an easy procedure (hard for any IT person to believe now, but sadly at the time true.)

“They tell me they can do it, but it will take until after five o’clock to make the program change.”

“Five o’clock that is too late eh!  What are we going to do?”

“Well you could add them all manually.”

“No way eh, there are over 3000 symbols; we could never get them finished in time for processing.”

“Can you fax me the list of symbols that were deleted?”

“Eh?  What good will that do?  We need a program to be written to add them back!”

“Fax them to me and I’ll see what we can do.”

I received the list of symbols, enlisted three New Yorkers, and the file was manually reinstated symbol by symbol before four o’clock.

New Yorkers can be rude, aggressive, pushy and cold, but dammit they get shit done!   


  1. Impressive. That must have been some might strong coffee they were being intravenously drip fed. Whatever works, right? :)


  2. Whoo-hoo, the back office saves the day! Again!

  3. I was in NYC first in 1965, had lunch at one of those coin-operated places, what were they called, foodomats? Anyway I was lingering for a minute over coffee and got poked in the side by the sharp end of an umbrella. An elderly woman standing there...."Done?" I left quickly.

  4. They do indeed get stuff done.

  5. Now that's getting things done and then some. Way to go.

    Have a fabulous day. :)

  6. I love New Yorkers. They stop and help tourists. I know from experience.

  7. New Yorkers are authentic. I think that's a lot better than fake.

  8. As someone who moved from New York State (not New York City, though) to South Carolina, I can attest to this. In South Carolina, they move at their own pace. First, they need to drink their swite tay* and get a few y'all and bless your heart in there, and then they'll tell you they don't care how you did it Up North. And then they might think about doing it. Tomorrow.

    *Sweet tea

    1. That actually sounds nice, unless you need to catch the 7:15.

  9. I know New York has this brusk reputation but I've been to New York several times and have only encountered helpful, friendly people. Happy weekend.

  10. I've only been to NYC once but I loved the hustle, bustle and ENERGY in the city. You are so correct---New Yorkers GET THINGS DONE!!

  11. I visited NYC many years ago and found they maybe be cold at first but once you got to know them a little they quickly change to be very friendly.

  12. My father's family is from Brooklyn and we just always thought everyone was like us and by "like us" I mean those New York genes are bred into generations. What others perceive as rude, we think is just plain 'ol honesty. And you're right. New Yorkers get things done and they do get them done quickly, another perception of rudeness, New Yorkers have shit to do, they don't really have time for chit chat, there's plenty of time for that over Sunday dinners and block parties, am I right?

  13. I think the main problem in New York are the tourists. New Yorkers aren't always rude, but the tourists sure are. I wonder if it's just that tourists are rude in general, or if it's that they hear of NYC's legendary rudeness and feel compelled to act rude first as a defense mechanism.