Ryan’s Trip To New York, Day 1.

This trip to New York is completely destroying all of the movie-geography, that I’ve pieced together over the years in my head. Even though I’ve watched documentaries on this city in the past, studied history and geography at some point during my education, and traveled here as a young lad, my ideas of how big this city is were grossly mis-calculated.

Basically, as I make my way around the town, movie references are what keep me grounded. Coney Island? That’s where the Warriors were headed, right? And Cloverfield? Big?

I found the same to be true when I visited Europe a few years back, but I think this is more of a shock given how much New York, as a mythical location, is presented in films.

I had no idea how long it would take to get from one burrow to another, via the subway. Despite successfully getting to my destination today, I still don’t have a clear grasp on how the platforms are configured. I was staring at signs and monitors and maps, as though they were written in French. I feel like the instructions are there only out of some archaic obligation that the designers felt, and that everyone manages to get from one place to another because they do this every day.

Hopefully by the time I leave, I’ll have mastered this subway system.

Apart from my thoughts on the New York Subways, I’m having a blast. My friend James (who has kindly opened his home to me while I’m in town), took me into Manhattan tonight for dinner at Red Bamboo, a vegetarian / vegan restaurant. I treated myself to a delicious coffee, some satay skewers, and the most ridiculous (in a good way) vegan chicken sandwich I’ve ever had. Imagine your basic chicken sandwich from Jack in the Box, with a patty, lettuce, and a tomato. Now add four more patties, make it vegan, and you’ll have the Soul Chicken sandwich from Red Bamboo. That is just one of the epic choices from their menu, and I’ll definitely head back.

I got a chance to walk up 6th avenue, a few dozen blocks to see some of the sites this evening, but I’ll head back tomorrow while it’s light out, to see more.

James lives way down at the southern end of Brooklyn, and it takes a while to get into the city.

At some point while I’m here, we’ll organize a meet-up for any friends that we have in the area. It’ll most likely be at a bar in Brooklyn, probably on Monday evening.

The weather is cold but tolerable. I think it’s snowing right now, and will likely get colder before I leave for Portland next Wednesday.

While I’m disappointed that I couldn’t make the trip to Sundance work out, I have a feeling this is going to be much more relaxing, and culturally rewarding in the long run.

Some of the sites I plan on seeing before I leave:

The Ghostbuster’s Firehouse

The public library with those iconic lions

The Statue of Liberty

The Empire State Building

Central Park


Watch movies at the IFC Center and the Film Forum

And basically just wander around Brooklyn and Manhattan and see what this city is all about.

Thanks for reading this late night ramble, which was typed out on my iPhone, and caused my pinky finger to go numb, from holding it at a weird angle for so long.

This is my first time using Posterous. I didn’t go back and re-read what I just wrote, so if there are errors, I don’t really care.