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Dear New Yorker,

Staten Island Ferry, South Manhattan

Your city is much like mine on two bottles of five hour energy drink or an overdose of a GNC protein shake. Just a little too much of a relatively good thing.

Your grocery stores sport shockingly outrageous prices. Try the fruit stand on the corner.

Be warned: the world is probably not going to end tomorrow. Even if it does, walking in fast forward like you do will not solve anything. The place you are going will still be there when you get there. Slow down.

Remember: New York City will either take your money or your time. Maybe both. And sometimes, your freedom. This isn’t always bad, you just need to be prepared to give something up.

Cathedral, East Village

Attending a professional sporting event in on of the nation’s largest urban centers and cheering for the visiting team is a touch intimidating but quite rewarding.  GO PENS!

A creative establishment or an innovative apartment-owner uses the long, skinny renting space in a unique way and is fine. A regular restaurant or renter feels cramped.

Sure, the cellar doors on the sidewalks are intriguing, but the garbage bags piled high on the streets everyday long for a hideaway. Get alleys.

Redeemer Presbyterian Church, Pastor Tim Keller

No city is too big for a God this big.

Times Square, Daytime

Times Square is a circus. On Saturday night it’s a full-blown freak show and I love nothing about it. If that’s what we value in American entertainment, then send me off on a ship to somewhere.

The food is mostly good.  Culture is appreciated and enhanced here.

I’m no longer amazed by the rich and famous, not like I once was.  I’m quite satisfied and often astounded enough at the successes and talents of the ordinary and the under-appreciated.

Memphis, Schubert Alley

Broadway is not over-rated. It is wisely rated; ratings well-deserved. It is a unique niche of the arts community with so much to be said for it. My appreciation for all things art was deepened and intensified in my first Broadway experience: Memphis.

Try Chicago: it’s like a case-study of your city, with less of the things you hate and not without the urban detail you love. You will wait longer for the train, you can wear sweatpants in public, and famous folks are only every third block.

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