Best 436 quotes in «new york city quotes» category

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    I visit you in my dreams and you talk to me in songs. Each sentence is a bridge taking me closer to the city that you are.

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    I waited in vain for someone like me to stand up and say that the only thing those of us who don't believe in god have to believe is in other people and that New York City is the best place there ever was for a godless person to practice her moral code. I think it has to do with the crowded sidewalks and subways. Walking to and from the hardware store requires the push and pull of selfishness and selflessness, taking turns between getting out of someone's way and them getting out of yours, waiting for a dog to move, helping a stroller up steps, protecting the eyes from runaway umbrellas. Walking in New York is a battle of the wills, a balance of aggression and kindness. I'm not saying it's always easy. The occasional "Watch where you're going, bitch" can, I admit, put a crimp in one's day. But I believe all that choreography has made me a better person. The other day, in the subway at 5:30, I was crammed into my sweaty, crabby fellow citizens, and I kept whispering under my breath "we the people, we the people" over and over again, reminding myself we're all in this together and they had as much right - exactly as much right - as I to be in the muggy underground on their way to wherever they were on their way to.

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    I wanted solitude, but a treasure like that didn't exist in the city. I only found silence in Central Park, still littered with people of course, but the only place that held moments of calm. I breathed in that wonderful silence as my pace finally slowed, and nature delighted my senses.

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    I wanted the rattle of New York around me, I wanted stink and strangers and the sour dank air of the IRT clutching me to its bosom. I wanted hustle and bustle. I wanted to know that millions of lives were playing out at my doorstep, and not one of them gave a damn about my little problems.

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    I want to feel like I'm making a difference in this world. And I want some time for living rather than just working. Life is for living, isn't it? It can't be all just for working

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    I want to live New York City. Not live IN it, but live IT. I want to be alive right here, right now.

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    I was an I, an opera of feeling with a very small audience, a writer of articles about culture but with no real voice, living in a tiny one-bedroom apartment in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn, a dream of love growing ever more expansive because it was impossible, especially in the gay bars I sometimes frequented in Manhattan, where AIDS loved everyone up the wrong way, or in a way some people weren’t surprised by, particularly by those gay men who were too indifferent to be sad — in any case night sweats were a part of the conversation people weren’t having in those bars, in any case, taking your closest friend in because he was shunned by his family was part of the conversation people weren’t having, still, there was this to contend with: that friend’s shirt collars getting bigger, still, there was this to contend with: his coughing and wheezing in the little room off your bedroom in Brooklyn because TB was catching, your friends didn’t want you to catch it, loving a man was catching, your friends didn’t want you to get it; his skin was thin as onionskin, there was a lesion, he couldn’t control his shit, not to mention the grief in his eyes, you didn’t want to catch that; those blue eyes filled with why? Causing one’s sphincter to contract, your heart to look away, a child’s question you couldn’t answer, what happened to our plans, why was the future happening so fast? You didn’t want to catch that, nor the bitterness of the sufferer’s family after death, nor the friends competing for a bigger slice of the death pie after the sufferer’s death, you certainly didn’t want to catch what it left: night sweats, but in your head, and all day, the running to a pay phone to share a joke, but that number’s disconnected, your body forgets, or rushes toward the love you remember, but it’s too late, he’s closer to the earth now than you are, and you certainly don’t want to catch any of that.

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    I was lucky to live in New York when it was dangerous and edgy and cheap enough to play host to young, penniless artists. That was the era of "coffee shops" as they were defined in New York—cheap restaurants open round the clock where you could eat for less than it would cost to cook at home. That was the era of ripped jeans and dirty T-shirts, when the kind of people who are impressed by material signs of success were not the people you wanted to know.

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    I was walking along and I'm looking at the tall buildings. And I got to thinking about what Thoreau said: They created a lot of grand palaces here, but they forgot to create the noblemen to put in them.

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    I wish I knew how to get you back. And apparently fate won't let me give up" From Central Park Song: a Screenplay

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    I would stay in New York, I told him, just six months, and I could see the Brooklyn Bridge from my window. As it turned out the bridge was the Triborough, and I stayed eight years.

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    Keep moving. Your next big thing may be just around the corner.

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    Let the park live in you until it sings you a song.

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    Life is amazingly simplified,” she wrote in her journal, “now that the recalcitrant forsythia has at last decided to come and blurt out springtime in petalled fountains of yellow. In spite of reams of papers to be written, life has snitched a cocaine sniff of sun-worship and salt air, and all looks promising.” She already adored New York.

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    Like a driver who has lost control of his vechicle, I was bracing for the impending crash." From: "My Worst Valentine's Day.Ever: a Short Story

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    Like flowers blooming through cement, we, too, can grow beyond our cracks.

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    Maybe the price of forgetting that even in America, even in New York City, when a man from back home is talking, you better listen closely. (Dark City Lights)

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    Look at it,' he said, gesturing. 'This window looks down upon hundreds more panes of glass, and behind those panes live thousands upon thousands of lost souls. When I feel cast down and helpless, scores of other men do as well, and when I am bitterly angry at feeling cast down and helpless, countless other people languish in concert with me. When I'm happy, it's the same. It's a bit like...I used to play chamber music. It's like a vast orchestra. And so I shan't ever be alone.

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    Man with goatee. Man who looked like a Beatle. All the Beatles at once. Woman wearing newspaper hat. I'd grown used to how weird New Yorkers were, and I could fit them into types.

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    Maybe the price of forgetting that even in America, even in New York City, when a man back home is talking, you better listen closely.

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    Maybe we become New Yorkers the day we realize that New York will go on without us.

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    Meantime the Newspaper of Record goes around in a little pleated skirt shaking pompoms, leaping in the air with an idiot grin if so much as a cement mixer passes by.

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    Meanwhile the temperature is getting hotter and hotter so no one can think clearly. No one perceives. No one cares. Insane madness come out like life is a terrific party.

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    Most New Yorkers spent their lives somewhere between the fruit cart and the fifth floor. To see the city from a few hundred feet above the riffraff was pretty celestial. We gave the moment its due.

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    Mrs. Almond lived much farther up town, in an embryonic street with a high number—a region where the extension of the city began to assume a theoretic air, where poplars grew beside the pavement (when there was one), and mingled their shade with the steep roofs of desultory Dutch houses, and where pigs and chickens disported themselves in the gutter. These elements of rural picturesqueness have now wholly departed from New York street scenery; but they were to be found within the memory of middle-aged persons, in quarters which now would blush to be reminded of them.

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    Most people surrendered fairy tale hopes in exchange for cookie cutter lives

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    My decision to become a teacher suddenly seemed even more appropriate. Life had just become that much more unpredictably precarious and ill-suited to long-term planning, and it felt that much more necessary to spread love and knowledge to those who would one day have to manage this messy and painful world of ours" Also in Zack Love's "Stories and Scripts: an Anthology

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    MY DEAREST MY EVER CRUSH I couldn’t have wished anything more Than that the spaces between my fingers Were filled with yours As I strolled and sample the best of NYC today I wish that every wish become real, and all dreams true Because in my dreams I am always with you Our friends both envy us and rejoice for us We are ever madly in love and think less of who cares I can’t wait to see you again True Love

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    My main concern while in New York wasn't becoming a hot shot. I was more concerned with staying alive, and that took all the pleasure out of the experience. I didn't know where to find a grocery store so I subsisted on hot dogs, peanuts and whatever else I could buy from a street vendor. I didn't know how to hail a cab (apparently there's an art to it). I stood on the edge of the sidewalk and waved my arms around but no one stopped, so I limited my entire universe to however far I could walk and I never walked too far because I was afraid I'd get lost and never find my way back home again. Perhaps that's why there are so many homeless people in New York; maybe they're not really lost, maybe some of them have homes but they just don't know how to get there.

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    My one thought is to get out of New York, to experience something genuinely American.

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    My new life was unstable and unsure, but each new day was shot through with new possibility.

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    Never mind gas masks and fallout shelters in the event of biological warfare. Many New Yorkers move from place to place equipped with the essentials of vermin assault weaponry: mouse traps, roach spray, and sticky tapes. In some neighborhoods, it’s a must.

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    Never tell your dreams to a person who has no vision.

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    New Yorkers and Texans get along so well. They have those same outsize personalities, that determination and passion, that “don’t mess with me” quality. And they have the same law my maternal grandmother would tell me from the time I was a little boy: “If it is to be, it is up to me.” Self-reliance, confidence. I really believe those lyrics, “If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere.” In Texas, we have something we call “the Cortez moment,” which refers to when the great Spanish explorer and conquistador of Mexico came and set up camp and then burned his boats. The phrase “burn the boats” means there’s nothing but forward, onward, no turning back or running home scared. It’s a motto for New York as much as for Texas. When you move here, if you’re any good at all, you burn the boats. (from My First New York)

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    My past still haunts me when I sleep, although I saw that - much to my surprise- his does as well.

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    New York City is legendary for sleeping around. There's hot tail everywhere and it's such a big city that two-timing and even three-timing is very doable, if you plan it right." From "My Worst Valentine's Day.Ever. (a Short Story)

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    New York City is the place where people come to invent, reinvent, or find the room they need to be who they wish to be.

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    New York is a granite beehive, where people jostle and whir like molecules in an overheated jar. Houston is six suburbs in search of a center.

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    New York! I say New York, let black blood flow into your blood. Let it wash the rust from your steel joints, like an oil of life Let it give your bridges the curve of hips and supple vines. Now the ancient age returns, unity is restored, The recociliation of the Lion and Bull and Tree Idea links to action, the ear to the heart, sign to meaning. See your rivers stirring with musk alligators And sea cows with mirage eyes. No need to invent the Sirens. Just open your eyes to the April rainbow And your eyes, especially your ears, to God Who in one burst of saxophone laughter Created heaven and earth in six days, And on the seventh slept a deep Negro sleep.

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    New York is the place where everyone will stop a championship fight to look at an usher giving a drunk the bum's rush.

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    New York City, city of exaggerations. Place of Herculean ascensions and perilous falls.

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    New York City is a phoenix rising from the ashes.

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    New York is a tough place for a faint of heart; the city has a way of forcing you to be razor sharp in every way. Living there is hard enough, but thriving there takes a whole different set of survival skills. And looking beautiful is never just an option. It's a must.

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    New York is such an awful place. No wonder it's so crowded. No wonder it's almost impossible to leave.

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    New York, I thought, was a city defined by its flaws. In every possible way, its virtues were overwhelmed by its vices, as Jekyll was by Hyde. Yet it was these very vices that gave the city its character - like tar in an oak barrel lending its flavor to Scotch.

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    New York, of course, is to be in endless surreal situations where a fifty-thousand dollar, gun-metal Mercedez pulls up into a puddle of blood, and out steps a twenty-five karat blonde transvestite with a two dollar wristwatch.

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    New York was populated by the ambitious. It was often the only thing that everyone here had in common. Ambition and atheism: "Ambition is my only religion," JB had told him[...] Only here did you feel compelled to somehow justify anything short of rabidity for your career; only here did you have to apologize for having faith in something other than yourself.

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    New York is never a megalopolis of however many millions; it’s always just your neighborhood—the shoe repair guy, the carpenter, the grocer, the post office—like any small town in Texas, really. (Dan Rather, from My First New York)

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    New York. The world's most dramatic city. Like a permanent short circuit, sputtering and sparking up into the night sky all night long. No place like it for living. And probably no place like it for dying. ("New York Blues")

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    No, I didn't make it to New York. I fucking love New York, even though my version of the American dream is impossible there and their gross, floppy pizza is like eating someone's post–plastic surgery skin.

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