My two favorite cities. One I reside in, the other I play in. The Bold Italic recently posted a few articles with the catch phrase, “The Manhattanization of San Francisco“ lamenting the two cities’ similarities. However, crazy salaries and ridiculous rents aside, San Francisco and New York are, in my mind, totally different places.
For the sake of research, I spent countless hours in bars across the two towns, collecting quotes that signify the chief difference in multiple domains. You’ll find it isn’t really an apples to apples comparison. It’s more like….apple to avocados.
“You’re going to step out in last season’s Versace? Why don’t you just write a big ‘discount sale’ tag on your forehead?” -advice on my dating wardrobe in NYC
“Oh it’s not just any hoodie—it’s a James Perse hoodie….” -what my date wears in SF
“The hamburger is from grass fed cows, right?” -my dining companion in SF
“This comes with fries, right?” -my dining companion in NYC
“I’d love a drink but I’m detoxifying myself on a week long wheatgrass cleanse. I’ll just sip water and watch you.” -my ‘drinking buddy’ in SF
“I don’t remember the last time I was sober past 6pm….ah well, why start now? Another Manhattan for me!” -a random acquaintance in NYC
Ordering a coffee
“Almond milk delicately foamed to 180 degrees? You got it!” -my barista in Pacific Heights
“You want what? Almond milk? They actually make that shit?” -a barista in the Upper West Side
“We have a ninja vs. pirate party tonight—you can pick which one you dress up as and then we’ll play beer pong in costume! Oh, sometimes we have a ref–and he’s usually naked…” –a friend in SF
“I’ll see if I can get us on the list for the gallery opening. A lot of A players there so wear couture okay? This isn’t SF burning man party stuff.” -a friend in NYC
The scene at 2 am
“Let go to the Sullivan room—people are just starting to get there.” -bar conversation on where to go next in the village
** Crickets chirping ** -everyone is in bed preparing for their triathlon
“You think I should get out of banking? And get a job that ends at 6pm?! I’d feel like a failure-one of those lame guys that has things called ‘hobbies.’ ” -my ex NYC
“Once we exit, I’m thinking about taking a year off to surf…” -my ex in SF
Work Colleague Communication
“I think we should get a mediator to help us resolve our communication style differences.”-a colleague in SF
“I don’t like you. So what? Move on.” -a colleague in NYC
“We don’t really have relationships here….you just kinda morph in and out of people’s bedrooms.” -singleton, NYC
“I’ve heard this myth of people that have relationships…..and then I realized it was the polyamourous crew.” -singleton, SF
“SF has priced me out. I’m thinking of buying a place in Oakland. Plus there aren’t any tech douchebags there.” -frustrated SF homebuyer
“Manhattan has priced me out. I’m thinking of buying a place in Brooklyn. Plus there aren’t any finance douchebags there.”-frustrated NYC homebuyer
Okay, okay maybe there ARE some similarities…….but forget those and celebrate the differences, the frustrations, and the weirdness that make both places spectacular.
San Francisco has always been a haven for misfits and weirdos. I’m both of those, which is why I came here. – Michael Franti
I think you should do one on SF versus London 🙂
Andrew–Is that an invitation? : ) Joking aside I shall be back in Paris in May….perhaps I’ll pop by London to document the bar scene there at that time. Think Londoners can give New Yorkers a run for their money where liquor is concerned….