The Reason We Live In New York

I'm in Miami right now! Aren't you jealous? Probably not—it's 50 degrees in New York today. Also, there has never been anything more overrated than spending Holidaytime in a sunny, palm-tree infested place. It just feels wrong.

The manicured tropical plants in rich people's lawns are adorned with sparkly lights and there is a giant menorah made of seashells on Lincoln Road, and the stores are still all playing songs about how lovely the weather is for a sleighride together with you. Maybe you get used to it after a while but to me, the superimposition of the idealized New England snowy Xmas we all have in our heads onto Florida just seems bizarre and icky.

Or maybe it's just that Florida is icky! My parents moved here in August for my Dad's job and this is my first time visiting them and, okay, I'm sorry if you are from Florida and you have a lot of Florida pride, but I have never been more eager to get back to the steely skies and garbage-decked sidewalks of New York than I am right now. At least that stuff is real. Miami—with the exception of some pretty art deco hotels near the beach—just looks fake, like it was all plopped down at the same time, built in the style of a Ramada Inn.

All the people you pass on the street or on the beach are tanned and well-groomed and carrying whipped cream-topped frozen beverages from Starbucks. The women, yes, have fake boobs, but they're often tasteful and convincing ones! They are wearing empire-waist tunics from Intermix. The men are wearing tight patterned t-shirts with the logo of a store. No one is trying to be a hipster at all, not even the tanned, unconvincing Ashlee Simpson variety of hipster. I never thought I would be craving the sight of a kaffiyeh or a fedora.

For that matter, I never thought I'd be eager to board a rush hour A train full of hangdog-faced commuters, but I am. At least those people don't make you feel like you might be a freak for not feeling 100% contented at all times.