George Marks/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
By Chris Vespoli

During the course of your life in the big city, there will surely come times when you are forced to talk to someone who lives in the suburbs. I know, I don’t like having to do it either, but we all go to parties and sometimes we get stuck trying to make conversation with a couple from Great Neck or Mamaroneck or Teaneck (what’s with all the “necks,” suburban people?). Here are a few awkward topics of conversation that you should avoid:


That great, new restaurant you ordered from on Seamless

Most suburban people don’t know what Seamless is, nor do they have a need for it. In the sticks, ordering out is a special occasion — an exciting, once-a-week event in which parents are given the night off from cooking in favor of picking up the phone and having pizza or chinese food or pizza (hey, options are limited in the ‘burbs) magically brought to the house. City dwellers, on the other hand, almost never cook and rely solely on Seamless’ fast and brutally impersonal food delivery service for their sad, nightly sustenance.

Your thoughts on the Central Park horses controversy

Whether or not horse-drawn carriages should still be allowed to operate in the city has been a hot button issue here for a while, but not in the suburbs. No, most people in the suburbs fucking love a nice handsome cab ride through the park when they visit the city, so save your breath about how inhumane you think it is. Oh, and don’t badmouth Liam Neeson for opposing a ban, either. People in the suburbs love those Taken moves, too.

Indie films

Which reminds me, save your comments about the artsy fartsy movie you caught at IFC the other night. If it’s not playing at the gargantuan 30-screen multiplex at the mall, chances are suburban people don’t even know it exists (and let’s be honest, they’re probably better off). Oh, and don’t bring up Woody Allen either. Manhattanites may still respect him as a filmmaker, but his stock plummets the second you cross the bridge.

How expensive everything is in the city

Suburban people shop at reasonable supermarkets, not shady bodegas and scheistery hipster havens like Whole Foods. That being said, they actually pay reasonable prices for groceries and will actively mock you when you bemoan the $7 you coughed up for a gallon of milk. Instead, complain about gas prices. It doesn’t matter if you have no idea how much gas costs — it always costs way too much, and suburban people love complaining about it. Mention gas prices and you won’t have to say another word for the duration of the conversation.

How “awesome” Manhattanhenge is

Manhattanhenge is that thing where people line up along outside twice a year to watch the sun set exactly parallel to the street. Sure, we think it’s pretty cool, but chances are it won’t really blow suburbanites’ minds when you tell them about it. There’s no light pollution in the suburbs, so people there can see all kinds of awesome celestial shit like stars and comets and planets — and a lot more often than twice a year.

Your Citi Bike adventures

Suburban people actually own their own bicycles because they have garages and sheds and basements in which to store them, so bike share programs are very much foreign concepts in suburbia. They probably paid 50 bucks for their bikes at Walmart, which makes New Yorkers look bat shit insane for shelling out $95 a year for the privilege of dodging buses, taxi cabs, and sanitation trucks while riding their communal petri dishes of disease.

How you won trivia night at your local dive bar

People in the suburbs don’t go to trivia night. They watch Jeopardy.

One Response to Awkward New York: How Not to Talk to Suburban People

  1. tsk says:

    This is the kind of post that makes New Yorkers look like idiots. First city people do cook. Go to ant supermarket and in the meat section you will find this raw product called meat. It can’t be consumed that way and the markets would not carry it if we all did not cook. Second, everyone kmows food is more expensive in the city. The suburbs are actually filled with people who come here everyday, they just choose to live elsewhere. This is written by a self- indulgent hipster who can’t see past her own existence.

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