People Better Than You: The Yaliens of New YorkS

This afternoon the New York Observer presents us with an anthropological study of Yale graduates living in New York City, and it is predictably O Rly? Not the actual article (so much), but the Yalies themselves. Oh the Yalies.

A few tasty bites:

"They'll throw around names of places in a way Harvard kids don't," one Columbia student complained. "They'll say, ‘I'm at Botanica,' even if they don't know if you, someone who goes to school here, know what Botanica is, whereas I think Harvard kids would say, ‘I'm at a bar in Soho. It's called Botanica.'"

Yes, Columbia student! That is very true. It is as annoying for a Yale grad to name-check a bar without explanation as it is to get quoted in a newspaper saying that it is annoying for a Yale grad to name-check a bar without explanation. Why must Yalies always be so deliberately vague and elusive?? Let's talk to a recent grad.

He said he has been working an office job for a nonprofit-nothing serious-and was mostly loving New York his first year out of New Haven, except for one thing. "There aren't as many people here who are smart and interesting," he said. "There are a ton who look like they would be, but they're not." A classmate standing nearby agreed. "You see people hanging out in places that make you think they're going to be," she said, "but then you meet them and they're lame."

Aptly observed. Sometimes when you meet people here — especially ones with "TigerBeat posters of Justin Bieber hung ironically on the walls" — they are lame. It just happens. Moving on.

Yalies compete with each other by trying to do more interesting and creative and unusual things, whereas Harvard people try to compete with each other in a more conventional way, by getting farther, faster in their careers

And as for the people who went to other colleges? Well, they're just happy to be in the same city as the sons and daughters of these two noble institutions. They find creative and unusual ways to befriend Elis, and conventional, career-minded ways to suck up to Harvardians. We orbit cruel, binary suns!

We don't really have a point in showing you this article except to bring to attention what has probably been percolating in your brain since you first set foot on these metallic shores: This is Yale's city. You're just living in it. After all:

According to the last printed Yale Alumni Directory, there were more than 10,000 Yale graduates living in Manhattan in 2004, and just over 2,000 in Brooklyn. Of course, that includes graduates of the graduate and professional schools in addition to those of the college, but still: per Robert Weil, the editor from W.W. Norton who kindly provided these figures, the number of Yale affiliates in Manhattan and Brooklyn would be roughly equal to almost 10 full undergraduate classes.

Forget it, CUNY. It's Yaletown.