Planning a trip to New York City? Never been here? Allow me to assist you by sharing these simple guidelines to help improve your stay (and the lives of everyone who works here).
A Simple Rule Book For The New York City Tourist*:
1) DON'T keep your umbrella open while walking under scaffolding. I realize New York City has scaffolding every other block, but if you do thumb exercises and stretching I'm fairly confident that you will be able to open and shut your umbrella with sufficient speed and ease.
2) DON'T walk three people across on a sidewalk. Two is pushing it, but as long as there is room to get around you, you'll be fine. But three people walking side by side? Unacceptable.
3) DON'T walk the same pace that you do at home. If you're unsure how fast you should walk in New York City, it's good practice to take the speed you typically walk and double it. At least.
4) DON'T pause in the middle of the sidewalk to take a photo/video of your girlfriend standing in the middle of Times Square/look at a map. If you need to stop, make sure you are well out of the way of passersby. If you aren't, you are either going to get run over, cursed at, or have a random Joe Schmo in your photo as he walks in front of your camera.
5) DON'T ride up and down the subway escalator next to each other, or stand on the left side. The right side of the escalator is for standing, the left is for walking. Again, expect to be run over or cursed at if you don't follow this simple rule.
6) DON'T pay any attention to the man covered in a pile of plastic bags and newspaper sleeping in the subway car. He is much more afraid of you than you are of him.
7) DON'T take a ride from a car service unless you're in a tornado or it's hailing out. Those people rip you the hell off. Stick with cabs. I'm trying to help you here.
8) DON'T be afraid to asks for directions. New Yorkers aren't that scary, I promise. Unless it's before 9 am and said New Yorker hasn't had their coffee. Then all bets are off.
*Likely applies to other large cities in the US and around the world.