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For many New Yorkers, it doesn’t feel like summer until you’re engaged in one of the following activities:
1. Sunbathing at Rockaway Beach
2. Scarfing down a hotdog on the Coney Island boardwalk
3. Catching the first whiff of sweltering garbage

If you’re a giant theatre nerd like me, it doesn’t feel like summer until you’ve watched an outdoor production of Shakespeare.

Last night, Shakespeare in the Park opened their production of Much Ado About Nothing and the rave review in the Times today means the infamous line is likely to balloon for the rest of the final 12 days of the run. You should absolutely try to see it and read my article first: A Former Usher’s Tips for Getting Shakespeare in the Park Tickets.

In the meantime, this weekend June 13-16, you can catch a delightful production of Shakespeare in the (lowercase) park just a short walk away from the Delacorte Theater. Totally free with no need for tickets or any kind of line!

I was lucky enough to see Occupy Verona’s production of Occupy Harry last Saturday. With that kick-off, it’s officially summer for this theatre nerd. Occupy Harry at Summit Rock in Central Park

The “production value” of this show is a stark contrast to that down the hill with the Public Theater. Thus this production of Henry V (rebranded “Occupy Harry“) becomes a prime example of how the brilliance of Shakespeare lies in the words. Just like your college theatre professor promised- don’t need much else!

The grassy hill serves as the set, a fitting battlefield. Costuming is minimal, yet effective, and there were few props beyond bow staff weapons. The raggle-taggle feeling gives this show its charm. I was able to hear every single word utter despite zero amplification.

What the NYC theatre company Occupy Vernona may lack in budget, they make up in talent. The performances are strong and you can tell every actor feels lucky to be a part of this band of brothers. No matter how hot the sun beats down on their fur-trimmed vests, or how many barking dogs compete with their iconic speeches.

I reached out to company founder, Occupy Harry director, and actor Joe Raik, and asked him a smattering of questions about the production:

Can you tell me a little bit about your idea for the show?
Thank you for asking! Occupy Harry is Shakespeare’s Henry V, re-imagined as a feminist uprising against a toxic patriarchal power structure. 

Was it important for you to make Shakespeare relevant for a 2019 audience? How did you go about that?
One of the reasons I love doing Shakespeare is that the plays (most of them) explore such deeply universal truths that they will always be relevant in any year! One of the things we can do to highlight the clear connections to our own time is mess around with the context. So we still have these powerful themes of courage, heroism, leadership and the various pitfalls and obstacles to each, but instead of applying them to a nationalist fervor as in the original, we can reposition the players and explore true revolutionary change.

Why is your production called Occupy Harry, not Henry V?
Laurel Andersen, who plays Katherine and the Chorus, came up with that title, possibly as a joke. All of our Shakespeare plays start with ‘Occupy’. I was thinking of calling it Occupy France or Occupy Agincourt because that’s literally what happens but decided to go with Occupy Harry because it’s the play itself we are occupying and its historical identity as this rousing fight-song that inspires and fills us with hope and pride with its stirring speeches and flawed but magnetic hero… Those things are what we want to make use of but in a way that speaks to current themes. So we Occupy Harry.

What’s your favorite part about performing outside?
Every now and then there’s a breeze and it has the effect of both cooling and making you look amazing with your costume blowing in the wind!

What’s the biggest challenge?
Sirens. Always sirens.

Any other Occupy Verona events in the works? 
Occupy’s got a couple of things in the offing for next year but nothing we’ve announced yet! You’ll have to stay tuned! But I’ll be acting in Sextant Theatre’s world premiere of Potemkin Play at HERE Arts Center in July. Hope to see you there! 

Thanks for the info, Joe! I first met Joe back in my Jekyll and Hyde days. Today we get drunk perform together with The Drunk Texts. Full disclosure: dude is MAD talented.

Check out Occupy Harry this weekend 6/13-6/16 at Summit Rock, on the west side of Central Park by the 81st Street entrance.
Thursday and Friday at 6PM, Saturday and Sunday at 4PM.

The post Occupy Harry: Rollicking, Raggle-Taggle Shakespeare in the Park at Summit Rock appeared first on New York Cliché.

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For many New Yorkers, it doesn’t feel like summer until you’re engaged in one of the following activities:
1. Sunbathing at Rockaway Beach
2. Scarfing down a hotdog on the Coney Island boardwalk
3. Catching the first whiff of sweltering garbage

If you’re a giant theatre nerd like me, it doesn’t feel like summer until you’ve watched an outdoor production of Shakespeare.

Last night, Shakespeare in the Park opened their production of Much Ado About Nothing and the rave review in the Times today means the infamous line is likely to balloon for the rest of the final 12 days of the run. You should absolutely try to see it and read my article first: A Former Usher’s Tips for Getting Shakespeare in the Park Tickets.

In the meantime, this weekend June 13-16, you can catch a delightful production of Shakespeare in the (lowercase) park just a short walk away from the Delacorte Theater. Totally free with no need for tickets or any kind of line!

I was lucky enough to see Occupy Verona’s production of Occupy Harry last Saturday. With that kick-off, it’s officially summer for this theatre nerd. Occupy Harry at Summit Rock in Central Park

The “production value” of this show is a stark contrast to that down the hill with the Public Theater. Thus this production of Henry V (rebranded “Occupy Harry“) becomes a prime example of how the brilliance of Shakespeare lies in the words. Just like your college theatre professor promised- don’t need much else!

The grassy hill serves as the set, a fitting battlefield. Costuming is minimal, yet effective, and there were few props beyond bow staff weapons. The raggle-taggle feeling gives this show its charm. I was able to hear every single word utter despite zero amplification.

What the NYC theatre company Occupy Vernona may lack in budget, they make up in talent. The performances are strong and you can tell every actor feels lucky to be a part of this band of brothers. No matter how hot the sun beats down on their fur-trimmed vests, or how many barking dogs compete with their iconic speeches.

I reached out to company founder, Occupy Harry director, and actor Joe Raik, and asked him a smattering of questions about the production:

Can you tell me a little bit about your idea for the show?
Thank you for asking! Occupy Harry is Shakespeare’s Henry V, re-imagined as a feminist uprising against a toxic patriarchal power structure. 

Was it important for you to make Shakespeare relevant for a 2019 audience? How did you go about that?
One of the reasons I love doing Shakespeare is that the plays (most of them) explore such deeply universal truths that they will always be relevant in any year! One of the things we can do to highlight the clear connections to our own time is mess around with the context. So we still have these powerful themes of courage, heroism, leadership and the various pitfalls and obstacles to each, but instead of applying them to a nationalist fervor as in the original, we can reposition the players and explore true revolutionary change.

Why is your production called Occupy Harry, not Henry V?
Laurel Andersen, who plays Katherine and the Chorus, came up with that title, possibly as a joke. All of our Shakespeare plays start with ‘Occupy’. I was thinking of calling it Occupy France or Occupy Agincourt because that’s literally what happens but decided to go with Occupy Harry because it’s the play itself we are occupying and its historical identity as this rousing fight-song that inspires and fills us with hope and pride with its stirring speeches and flawed but magnetic hero… Those things are what we want to make use of but in a way that speaks to current themes. So we Occupy Harry.

What’s your favorite part about performing outside?
Every now and then there’s a breeze and it has the effect of both cooling and making you look amazing with your costume blowing in the wind!

What’s the biggest challenge?
Sirens. Always sirens.

Any other Occupy Verona events in the works? 
Occupy’s got a couple of things in the offing for next year but nothing we’ve announced yet! You’ll have to stay tuned! But I’ll be acting in Sextant Theatre’s world premiere of Potemkin Play at HERE Arts Center in July. Hope to see you there! 

Thanks for the info, Joe! I first met Joe back in my Jekyll and Hyde days. Today we get drunk perform together with The Drunk Texts. Full disclosure: dude is MAD talented.

Check out Occupy Harry this weekend 6/13-6/16 at Summit Rock, on the west side of Central Park by the 81st Street entrance.
Thursday and Friday at 6PM, Saturday and Sunday at 4PM.

The post Occupy Harry: Rollicking, Raggle-Taggle Shakespeare in the Park at Summit Rock appeared first on New York Cliché.

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Saturday morning was all sunshine and rainbows, unicorns and sweat. The Color Run, the so-called “happiest 5,000 meters on the planet”, came to town!

If you know me, I’m so not an exercise junky. I run maybe once a week. Full disclosure: my body is still sore from this run and it happened four days ago. That’s my level of fitness. So listen up when I say the Color Run is the PERFECT 5K for people who really aren’t that into running but want to try!

This is my I’M READY. LET’S DO THIS face at the starting line inside CitiField. This face is far too serious for this event but my Dear Evan Hansen sweatband and the ladies in back of me are just perfect.

You know how professional wrestling is called “sports entertainment”? The Color Run is what I would call “run entertainment”. Come expecting a serious workout and you’ll be colored frustrated.

My friends and I ran the whole 5K and we were total overachievers among the crowd, weaving in and out, dodging walking participants. Running around the CitiField diamond and through the Mets dugout.

Running inside Mets Stadium was by far the sweetest part of this event in NYC. Look at me, I’m at home plate!

Photo-ops are a big part of the “run entertainment”. Put your phone in a plastic bag and bring it with you on the Color Run! The COLOR part of the Color Run

So the whole point of the Color Run is that periodically through the race you get doused with different powdered colors. It looks epic in all the promotional images. In real life…it’s still fun and also kinda weird. Volunteers on the side of the track squirt the color at you as you run by. You cover your mouth and nose with a cloth (provided by the event) to keep from inhaling it – not that it would be a huge problem if you did, it’s non-toxic. I recommend wearing sunglasses too – worrying about getting colored powder in my contacts was the least fun part of the morning.

The color stations broke up the 5K into small chunks, which made the full distance smaller. As we got sweatier, the color stuck to us more. After the start of the race around CitiField, the majority of this run was in the CitiField parking lot. A bit of a bummer for “THE HAPPIEST 5K” (is anyone ever truly happy in a parking lot?) but easy for clean up – crucial at an event like this!

The attendance of this event was pretty awesomely diverse. Groups of adults, lots of families, even teenagers came out and appeared to be having fun #myunicornlife. Tiny little kids participate in the Color Run and oh boy are they cute in rainbows and tutus. Hey, if you are worried about being slow running a 5K, there is NO WAY you will be slower than a toddler!

The Color Run: the CHILLEST 5K. No one takes the running part of this event too seriously.

Though I paused a couple times to take pictures, all and all I ran the whole thing! Yay 5K success! Here I am approaching the anticlimactic finish line!

Celebrated with a big assortment of tents from the many sponsors of the event. The Color Run is a for-profit event…which made me a bit skeptical…but after a dive into their website I learned they DO partner with a charity for every single event. This made me feel better! They’ve donated a total of 5 million dollars to charities since 2012 – not too shabby!

After you run a race like this, all I really wanted was cup of water and a photo with a unicorn. I got both.

If you like unicorns, rainbows, and want an excuse to say you ran a 5K but not take it too seriously? There is the PERFECT event for you! They have events coming up across the country all summer, see if one is near you on their event page: https://thecolorrun.com/#events

Disclosure: I was provided free tickets to this event.

The post The Color Run 2019: What “The Happiest 5K” is Really Like appeared first on New York Cliché.

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New York Cliché by New York Cliche - 1M ago

On Fridays I feature some fleeting moments from my week that made me stop and think, “I’m so lucky to live in NYC!” And maybe some that made me think, “Bahaha this city is ridiculous and I love it.” Here we go for the last week I was in NYC before I left on vacation!

A New Central Park Discovery

I’ve lived in NYC 11 years and I still stumble across parts of Central Park that I never noticed before. I was walking past Wollman Rink (it’s closed for the season, also Trump owns it so it’s ruined) when I noticed this wood gate made of branches. My immediate thought was it must be new! How cool! But the wood looks anything but fresh…a sign describing the enclosed nature sanctuary leads me to believe I’ve walk by it many times and just never noticed it! Which thrilled me even more than if it had been new. Lived here 11 years and still discovering new things every week.

Kiss Me Kate on Broadway

I see a lot of plays, but rarely go to see musicals. I got HipTix (the best deal in town only $25!!) to see Kiss Me Kate on Broadway and boy, was it an absolute treat. The dancing is fantastic, the music is Cole Porter in his prime, and the story line’s been updated so it’s palatable for 2019 (not an easy feat when it comes to Taming of the Shrew, the musical within the musical). It’s since been nominated for 4 Tony Awards including Best Revival of a Musical. I walked out of the theater feeling thoroughly entertained, like I was falling in love with the craft all over again. This is that kind of show.

Seinfeld-Lennon Street Art Mashup

Walking down 8th Avenue, who should I spy but a baby-face Jerry Seinfeld sporting John Lennon’s iconic New York City tee. A+ sticker street art that left me smiling for blocks after.

Cherry Blossoms

Th last thing I did before I left for a 9 day vacation in Istanbul (OMG it was amazing- blog post to come) was run to Roosevelt Island to see the cherry blossoms! It doesn’t feel like NYC spring without a peak at this pink. The petals blow off the island and gathered in pastel pools along the East River.

So those are some fun little moments from my pre-vacation week. It feels so far away after an amazing time in Turkey! I thought I’d return to a warm May in NYC, but so far it’s been gloomy and cold. Trying to get back into the swing of all things New York! Are you excited to see my vacation posts? How was your week?

The post Weekly New York Minutes #49 appeared first on New York Cliché.

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New York Cliché by New York Cliche - 2M ago

On Fridays I feature some fleeting moments from my week that made me stop and think, “I’m so lucky to live in NYC!” And maybe some that made me think, “Bahaha this city is ridiculous and I love it.” Here we go for this April week that sometimes kinda, sort felt like spring…

Game of Thrones invaded Rockefeller Center.

Where the famous Christmas tree stands every winter the infamous Throne of Swords was erected for the lead up to the final season release. The premier was in NYC last week and I watched them set up the catwalk, 20 yards from this throne display. Sometimes I feel like the only person in New York who hasn’t seen this show…

Twinkle turns to Flower Power

All winter (I mean waaay past the holidays) I was delighted by this simple twinkle light display in Chelsea. I mentioned it in my Weekly Minutes from January 18th:

Now spring has sprung, I was elated to walk down 22nd Street and discover this little source of street joy still remains, updated for the season!
Seriously, the flower power update made my day. It even has its own hashtag #peacelovechelsea

“Art and Identity in the Ancient Middle East” exhibit at the Met

You know how the saying goes, “April showers bring May flowers- and the perfect excuse to visit NYC world class museums!” In anticipation of my upcoming vacation to Turkey (so excited!!), I checked out the Met’s exhibit of Middle Eastern art. Turkey isn’t quite the Middle East, but the exhibit got me even more pumped from my trip. The ancient history of the area was drilled into us in grade school (seems like I spent all of seventh grade studying Mesopotamia) so I love how the exhibited art recalled those lessons as well as tying in the current ISIS destruction of ancient structures and artifacts. If you are a history buff, don’t miss it- now through June 23rd, more info on the Met’s website.

Trash VS Art Conundrum

There are times in NYC life when you pass something on the street and cannot for the life of you surmise if what you saw is garbage or art. I relish these moments. This one happened mere blocks from the Met Museum in Manhattan’s notoriously upper-crust Upper East Side neighborhood. Which made its weirdness all the more delightful.

So there are some fun little moments from my week. Well, one might have actually been from last week… As has become pretty clear, I’m struggling to keep this blog going. Next month is New York Cliché’s 11th blog anniversary. Crazy right? Maybe by then I’ll have figured out how to make blogging work for me right now. I’d love to hear feedback you might have on that- things you miss, any encouragement to write the personal essays which have always been my favorite posts… I’d love to hear from any of you still sticking with me despite my sporadic posts! A huge, huge thank you to all of you and I hope you had a great week!

The post Weekly New York Minutes #48 appeared first on New York Cliché.

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On Fridays I feature some fleeting moments from my week that made me stop and think, “I’m so lucky to live in NYC!” And maybe some that made me think, “Bahaha this city is ridiculous and I love it.” Here we go for this last week of March…

First Ice Cream of the Season!

Finally visiting the Ample Hills in my borough. The super popular NYC ice cream parlor opened in Astoria last summer and every time I’ve walked by, lines were out the door. Not when the temps are still in the 40s, like they were over the weekend! It was the first sunny Saturday of spring so naturally, we celebrated with ice cream! If you’re wondering who the lame-o is who got a kiddie cup- me, it was me. I enjoyed my modest portion which still included 2 flavors- their absolutely excellent “Pistachio Squared” and “Nectar of the Queens” which is ONLY available at this Astoria shop. What exactly is this flavor? Smooth honey cinnamon ice cream mixed with baklava and galaktoboureko from Astoria’s own Artopolis Bakery. It was pretty great, but I could have eaten way more than a kiddie portion of Pistachio Squared. Definitely recommend.

A 5K with the glorious NYC skyline cheering me on!

Got up early on a Saturday to take the Colon Cancer Challenge on Randall’s Island. This was a bit ambitious after a winter where the one and only time I went running was in my underwear. I’ve never worn so many layers while exercising but I finished the full 5K and felt pretty great! Hoping this is the start to being active this season!


Morning commute views

My boyfriend and I live one subway station apart. I gotta admit, I’m a little jealous that his station view is better than mine. See One World Trade on the left and the Empire State Building just above the back of the train? Don’t tell my fella, but sometimes I sleep over on weekday mornings just so I can get this sweet, sweet view in the morning.

So that’s all I got for fun little moments from my week. I started a new job this week so a lot of my time was spent in the office and then just vegging out at home after long days of training. How was your week? Any fun plans for the weekend? Have a great one and thanks for reading!

The post Weekly New York Minutes #47: Ice Cream and 5K Runs appeared first on New York Cliché.

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On Fridays I feature some fleeting moments from my week that made me stop and think, “I’m so lucky to live in NYC!” And maybe some that made me think, “Bahaha this city is ridiculous and I love it.” Here we go for this week where I emerge from blogging hibernation into SPRING…

Fake Banksy on the L Train

On the stairs descending to the 8th Avenue L Train, I came across this display. It’s super similar to the stunt Banksy pulled during his NYC residency back in 2013 where the artist set up a stand in Central Park selling originals of his art for $60. Pretty much no one bought them, because no one knew who had created them. When they were later revealed to be Banksy originals, people cursed themselves for not buying! You can see a video of that stunt:

Original Banksy Canvasses Sell for $60 Each - YouTube

So when I walked by this set up in the subway the thought crossed my mind: WHAT IF BANSKY IS DOING THAT STUNT AGAIN!? What if I see this on the news tomorrow and curse myself?! Some street entrepreneur is clearly banking on this ever-so #OnlyInNYC insecurity.

True West on Broadway

I saw the penultimate performance of True West starring Ethan Hawke and Paul Dano. I loved it. It brought me right back to reading playwright Samuel Shepard for the first time in undergrad and becoming obsessed with him in a quintessential undergrad theatre snob way. Seeing the second to last performance was pretty cool (leaving the theater I gasped “they only have one more show!!”) but I wish I’d seen it sooner so I could have shared with you all so you could have gotten tickets too! Ethan Hawke played a magnetic, messy, asshole and he was just phenomenal. Roundabout Theatre Company who produced this has THE BEST deal for Broadway tickets if you’re under 35, check it out: http://hiptix.com

First Day of Spring in Central Park

I Citibiked to Central Park on the first day of spring hoping to see signs of the season and OH BOY the park did not disappoint! The sun was out and there were the first blooms of crocuses and snowdrops and little yellow flowers I don’t know the name of. After a dreary, gray winter there’s nothing that makes me happier than spring flowers bringing color back to the concrete jungle!

Puppy in Chelsea Market

Shopping in Chelsea Market for a birthday present for my roommate when I saw this face. All the SQUEES. I don’t know how he got inside the market- I don’t think dogs are allowed- but I don’t care! This kind of cuteness should happen an any and all NYC shopping trips, please!

Bare Bryant Park

You know it’s spring in the city when the ice skating rinks close for the season! Bryant Park Ice Skating is gone and it’s pre-lawn season so this week was a rare opportunity to see Bryant Park COMPLETELY NAKED. It’s a little depressing…but then I simply remember of all the amazing free events they have during spring and summer and then I don’t feel so bad! The planters are full of flowers already and soon the whole park will be alive again, I can’t wait!

So there are some fun little moments from my week. How was yours? Any fun plans for the weekend? My Saturday is devoted to all-you-can-eat sushi, Sunday I’m running a 5K…ambitious combo, right? Have a great one and thanks for reading!

The post Weekly New York Minutes #46: Banksy, Broadway, & SPRING appeared first on New York Cliché.

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My friend Peter is part of a subculture that’s you might never guess exists in the concrete jungle. He’s an avid bird watcher, venturing out into New York’s many green spaces to crane his neck up into the trees with his telephoto lens. I went along with him once, it was a bonified walk in the park! He shares his incredible captures of New York’s high fliers on Instagram @degibirdpix, so all his friends know what a bird nerd he is. Which means he was flooded with messages and texts when the Mandarin Duck, also known as Hot Duck, arrived in NYC. Here’s his story about meeting and photographing NYC’s biggest wildlife celebrity.

Encountering Central Park’s Famous Hot Duck

Alternative title: Peter and the Duck. As told by Peter DeGiglio

This unclaimed feral drake Mandarin duck is indigenous to Asia and Europe. It mysteriously showed up in Central Park last fall and has since taken up residence. Here’s one of my best shots of the Mandarin duck, or as I’ve taken to calling him, Mandy Pâtékin… (see what I did there?)

Last week while I was observing this gorgeous creature, I witnessed some ignorant and selfish behavior on the part of an older couple…that let’s assume were tourists. A Simple Guide to Making Everyone in Central Park HATE YOU

The lady, first of all, climbed onto some rocks that were clearly marked as DANGEROUS by park staff, due to the pileup of snow overnight. I and several others watched with utter contempt as the woman gleefully and playfully began to pick up small clumps of snow and hurl them at our favorite celebrity fowl.

Yes, that’s right. She started tossing snow at NYC’s most eligible bachelor (according to New York Magazine).

As I and several others began choruses of “Hey! Stop! Don’t do that!,” she sat there, giggling away, while her male counterpart encouraged her to continue as we all watched this poor animal get hit with handfuls of snow!

Our protests grew progressively louder for several seconds and several more snow-pile tosses. She finally stopped and started to leave. One guy behind me growled, “Well, I hope you got the pictures you wanted!”

People. Animals DO NOT exist purely for YOUR entertainment!!! Harassing an animal is NEVER okay!!! NEVER! I mean, what the actual f@*k?!?!?!? You just had to have a photo of yourself harassing an animal you saw on the local news?!?? Not to mention the fact that they were being incredibly rude to me and every other human there trying to respectfully photograph the creature at the time!!

PSA: LEAVE ANIMALS ALONE. Just because you’re an upright walking, complex language-using primate doesn’t make you more important than them, assh*les.

Peter, in his natural bird watching habitat. Thanks for sharing this egregious duck tale, Peter!

Peter DeGiglio not only beautifully photographs birds, he gets the best angles of humans as well. He prides himself on offering affordable rates for his photography services, in a city notorious for the opposite. I 100% vouch for this guy: he’s friendly, talented, and will swiftly make even the most camera-shy bird feel at ease. Check out his website www.degigliophotography.com and book him for all your head shot needs- be they actor, profession, or blogging/lifestyle. Tell him you read this article and he might even offer a Hot Duck deal!

The post “What the DUCK?!” A Foul Encounter with Central Park’s Celebrity Fowl, the Mandarin Duck appeared first on New York Cliché.

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It can be rough to spend Valentine’s Day alone anywhere, but especially in New York City. The Big Apple is known for going big on holidays. Thankfully, February 14th celebrations stop short of a “Bloomingdale’s Valentine’s Day Parade” or a “Time Warner Center Heart Lighting”. Still, if you walk the streets on New York on Valentine’s Day, every shop window is covered in hearts, every restaurant romantically draped in red and candle light, and every bodega florist’s over-flow inventory spills out onto the sidewalk. Men carrying huge bouquets will make your subway commute even more crowded and the line to buy any sort of sweet treat will be infuriatingly long.

If you can make it (through Valentine’s Day) here, you’ll make it anywhere.

I put out a call to my fellow New Yorkers to share how they spend Valentine’s Day alone in the city. Here are 10 responses:

Work

1. “I’ve watched people get dumped on Valentines Day while waiting tables TWICE (once that included a manila envelope filled with RECEIPTS that he had been cheating!). I also had my pants split while serving champagne on V Day at a restaurant once. Super embarrassing and management wouldn’t let me leave either… they had me tie a second apron around the back! My table and I had a good laugh about it though.” – @amydetriotgirl, Mixed media artist who has some perfect Valentine’s Day art available here.

Go out with friends

2. “I actually have a tradition with my best friend that we go out and be very fancy whether we have boyfriends or not. We give one small gift and try to find a show like comedy, music, a screening, or some weird event. This year we are going to an improv show! The headlining group is called ‘Extra Chowder’.” – Maria, my bf’s bff from high school

3. “I spent many a Valentine’s Day single in NYC and I actually have very fond memories of most of them. I think my favorite was going to see a V Day drag show with girl friends. We laughed up our cliche Galentine’s Day status with the phenomenal host Bianca Del Rio who would later go on to win Season 6 of Rupaul’s Drag Race. – Mary Lane, author of this blog! Read more about my drag show V day: “Single on Valentine’s Day: What a Drag”

Go out alone

4. “In the past, I had done things like a pizza and movie night with other single friends. This year I’m excited to be going to a burlesque show solo. I think you should figure out what sounds fun, set your expectations appropriately for it maybe feeling a little weird to be alone, and not to get too wrapped up in tbe bullshit. In the end, it’s just another day. There’s a lot of pressure but make of it what you will. Today’s chocolates will be in the clearance bin tomorrow, so clean up on Feb 15 if bargain candy is your thing.” – @PolyGalSeeks, PhD and co-host of the podcast A Mighty Love

5. “If you think about it, being a single guy on Valentine’s Day has its advantages because all the single ladies (#Beyonce) go out to the bars with their other single friends. Thus, I decided to go out this past Valentine’s Day and test my luck. After walking past a few bars, I noticed a five dollar bill on the pavement. As I reached down to pick it up, something caught my eye. There was a wad of cash a foot away from the $5 bill. There’s no doubt that this was drug money and it was my humbled responsibility to spend it wisely. So, I put a skip to my step as I surreptitiously scooped up the cash and headed for cover inside the closest bar.

I felt like a million bucks – well, $287 to be exact. Hell, I tend to spend close to $100 on my date this time of year and now I’m making money (it made me wonder if Cupid shot an actual arrow at a handler, who then dropped their cash onto the ground for me to find). Fully loaded and a grin on my face, I requested the best draft in the house and walked up to two pretty brunettes outside the bar’s backroom (which contained live music).” – @SingleGuyInNYC, this is an excerpt from his blog, read the full post here.

Hook up

6. “The one time I remember being single on V Day in NYC was a time where I had two FWBs.  But instead of going for a sure thing…  I decided to call this waitress who had given me her number the week prior.  We went out drinking, then back to her UWS apartment and I was able to touch the most beautiful pair of breasts I have ever touched (to this day!).  I might have scored that night, but instead I made a fool of myself by getting WAY too stoned and passing out.  She never returned another call and her breasts will haunt my dreams forever.” – Walter, (remember Walter??) my best dude friend who I used to mention in many a blog before he moved away to Florida

Get out of town

7. “I usually try to travel on Valentine’s Day! It’s perfectly timed for a winter escape, especially with President’s Day.”- @GirlFliesSolo, travel blogger who’s most recent post went live today ”
Travel, My One True Love

8. “Prior to meeting my boyfriend (my first ever Valentine!), I loved celebrating Galentine’s Day. My first year in the city, I escaped to Boston and spent a long Galentine’s Day weekend with my best girlfriend making peppermint vodka martinis, having late night pajama dance parties, and watching How to Be Single. Still one of my favorite trips.” – @girlingothamcity, blogger/photographer/co-creator of Music & Mojitos. Check out her blog post: A New York Twist to Valentine’s Day

Ignore. Ignore. Ignore.

9. “Here’s how I used to ignore Valentine’s Day. I never went out for dinner, drinks, singles events, or any of those Anti-Valentine’s Day events that have become pretty popular. I’d go home, maybe buy a six-pack of my favorite beer, or a bottle of my favorite spirit, and just veg out. I’d watch a movie I love, maybe binge watch a good series, or spend time playing videogames. I didn’t go out of my way to avoid romantic things, but I didn’t seek them out either. The most important thing was keeping in mind that it was just another day, and my romantic involvement, or lack thereof, didn’t reflect on me as a person.” – @DemetriusSays, dating expert/blogger/podcaster.  Check out his blog post “Valentine’s Day is Just Another Day

Give No Fucks

10. “I know it’s expected of me to be a Bitter Betty on Valentine’s Day because I don’t have a significant other at the moment, but sorry. I won’t do it. I can’t.

Why? Because Valentine’s Day is nothing. It’s a day. A random-ass day in February. One day out of the year where people feel an immense pressure to do something for their boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife because society tells them to. I won’t lie to you; I “celebrated” it when I was in my past relationships; we’d go to dinner somewhere and maybe (but not always) I’d get flowers or something. But is that really celebrating? I’d go out to dinner all the time with the person I was dating. That’s just a thing you do. It never felt any more special or important or significant on this day. And if I can be honest, it actually felt..

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