Joe Gallo (@jgallo02) kindly allowed me to guest blog my ramblings on his awesome site, Tales of a New Yorker. A big thank you to Michael Bettiol (@bettiol) for making the connection. Below is NYC through my eyes.
“I posted a video on YouTube and I’m getting the weirdest responses…some people have said some really nice things and others are being rude and downright profane. How do I keep them from writing the bad stuff?” I was asked by a YouTube newbie. “You can’t.” I explained. This week I visited New York for a wedding in New Jersey. As I walked the streets, I found New York to be the real life version of YouTube.
In a city as large and diverse as New York you find it all. Interested in a comedy show in the middle of the day with a guy that you’ve never heard of but is brilliantly funny? Done. Care to see Ty from Extreme Makeover: Home Edition? Easy. The beauty and wonder is there on every corner. I spent an hour in Bryant Park watching two guys play Pétanque – it’s not Bocce, that’s a different game. What do I know? I’m from Texas. Want to learn how to play? They can teach you and they’re ready to do so. Are you looking for a funny line from Caddyshack II? Take a stroll down 5th Avenue as my parents did, when they ran into Jackie Mason. I wish they would’ve asked him to be the ball. Na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na. I know, the line is from Caddyshack, but work with me, okay?
New York is a small place. Cruising down 5th with my mom, I told her, I have a feeling I’m going to randomly bump into someone I know…I can feel it. A few blocks later, the towering Lewis Howes appears. I smile at my mom and just say “here we go.” Lewis was in town for a speaking gig at a conference. He’s based out of Ohio. What are the odds?
I still cannot believe all the things I found to do in one day. In the morning I rose, hopped over to 59th and 5th to meet Harry and Erica Hill from the CBS Early Morning Show. Fellow Texan, Betty Nguyen, sadly stayed indoors. I got caught on camera between the breaks as a crazy woman from Long Island or as she said it, “Long-guy-land” and humorously screamed at her “ma to turn ahn the teeeveeee!!!” From there, I zipped over to NBC’s Studio 1A at 30 Rock for a view of Matt Lauer and to earn my coveted Foursquare Today Show badge. I joked online that Matt still owes me five bucks and that he wouldn’t dare look at me while on camera. It was a great morning – getting a few seconds of face time on two national networks? Not bad. The day was certainly not over. After running around the city for a bit longer, I got to see some friends that I had met at CES for a taping of the Engadget Show. The timing could not have been better since Jimmy Fallon was a guest, then they later showcased the new Microsoft Kinect unit allowing for full body movement and control of the games. Impressive. Were we done? Absolutely not! Off to McSorley’s Old Ale House. McSorley’s is famous for a number of things, including having hosted Lincoln, Roosevelt, Lennon (John, not the Russian, that’s spelled differently), only serving a “light” or “dark” ale and for being the oldest Irish Tavern in NYC.
New York – what a city. As I said, NYC is much like YouTube. If you’ve spent time posting a video with even a few hundred to a few thousand hits and poked around looking for a video to suit you, you’ve had a digital experience of what The City has to offer. Sure, YouTube can’t provide the exact experience but you can find the famous, learn something new, bump into a friend, experience the inspirational, the downright fun and with some of the comments, huff the digital urine that peppers the streets of the city. Could I spend a lifetime there? Probably not, but just like YouTube, I certainly love to visit…and share it with friends and family.