NYC offers up so many great places to see, explore, and experience. There are a multitude of spots to eat a fabulous meal, take in entertainment, enjoy a delicious cocktail, view culture, and revel in history among others. As a long time resident of this gotham we call home I have yet to really hit up all the things I want to see and do. There is just always something going on here and not enough time to be a part of it. Yet, there is one dreaded place in NYC that “real New Yorkers” refuse to go on a normal bases – Times Square. This Disneyfied version of what use to be grungy and grimy Times Square is a beacon for people from all over the world to visit when arriving here on vacation. In 2012 NYC had a record breaking 52 million tourists visit the city, and I could swear all of them were in the Times Square area! This part of town becomes a frickin’ nightmare for the local New Yorker to navigate, and we all get a bit nauseaus just thinking about having to be there. Unless we head there to take in a show on Broadway we never, ever, really want to venture there. Even then, it’s a quick escape onto the subway or in a cab as soon as the show ends. “FLEE” is the first thing we think of, as this tourist trap hell hole frays every nerve in our bodies.
It’s strange, as even though I still love seeing Times Square all lit up at night like a Christmas tree, I just can’t fathom ever really hanging out in that part of town for any amount of time. Annoying tourists, bad eateries, and lame street performers all add up to avoiding the area like Lindsey Lohan avoiding a jail sentence.
New Year’s Eve – OH HELLZ NO!
This has no appeal to me whatsoever. New Yorkers DO NOT do Times Square on New Year’s Eve. Yeah, that’s the last thing I want to do. Stand around with hundreds of thousands of stange people, mostly tourists, for at least 8-10 hours squished in behind barricades and no bathrooms anywhere. Nothing to eat or drink. No booze allowed. Shoot me.
Annoying tourists – Everywhere!
Look, we know you are all here to see the sights of our wonderful city, but can you just be a little more “less touristy”? Let’s not make is so obvious. Do you really want to get mugged? Are you really wearing a fanny pack? Can you please keep moving on the sidewalk? Ugh!!!
Not a bad idea, really!
The Naked Cowboy in his “tighty whities” – please, just, no.
At least the guy stays in shape, but did we have to get an eyeful of that fat blob next to him? That’s an image I wish I could sear out of my brain with hot pokers.
Annoying tourists taking pictures – Get out of my way!
Yup. They are everywhere in Times Square, and always in the way. “Ooh look! A tall building”. Stop in middle of sidewalk. Get in everyone’s way to take pictures. Road rage!
Bizzarro World costumed performers – Why?
What is up with these weirdo looking knock-offs of Elmo, Mickey, Cookie Monster, etc, that roam around the Times Square area? In the hot summer they reak of B.O. and ass sweat. If you try and take a picture of them they harass you for money. I wouldn’t let my kids near them! They creep me out.
Why would you even think of eating in Times Square? This is New York City!
Do yourselves a favor and head to the east side, west side, downtown, the outer boroughs, anywhere but Times Square to eat. There are thousands of great spots to grab a good meal of all ethnic varieties. If you are one of the “People of Walmart” you might enjoy your trip to “Flavortown” though! Times Square is loaded with low quality fast food and chain restaurants that cater to tourists. For the love of your taste buds, and dignity, just don’t do it.
Hey, we actually love tourists. They bring a ton of biz to the city and spend a lot of cash here. Well, the Mayor’s office and Travel & Visitors Bureau sure does love them I think much more than the locals do. Times Square sees such an influx of visitors and spending here that I don’t think will slow down anytime soon. As for this New Yorker I will avoid this part of town like the plague unless seeing a play or musical there. Then make a hasty exit, stage right!
So, do you love or avoid Times Square? Fun part of town or tourist hell? Is it on your bucket list? Do you like naked cowboys?
24 thoughts on “Times Square NYC – Are You Frickin’ Kidding Me?”
Another great insight Phil. I suppose as a local you’ve been there, done that and just want to keep out of everyone’s way? The novelty has long passed.
I’ve only been to NYC once and yes I headed up there. As a visitor I suppose it is the expected thing to do. I’m not quite sure what to expect but once there I thought, is this it? It didn’t seem to have the character of Piccadily Circus yet still the same level of fame. It does come to life at night though and is more impressive than the day.
For some reason I was always unsure if it was “Time” or “Times”, thanks for clearing it up for me. Was it sponsored to give it it’s name or something?
Thanks for reading and retweeting – it’s much appreciated!
Times Square is one of those places as a tourist you have to see especially at night. At least once. So much better with all the lights and glitz. Then escape and head out to the rest of the city. To us locals it is tourist hell!There is so much more to see and do, and eat at, than that part of town.
Broadway is great, but that is it. As locals we make fun of Times Square in a light hearted way. Still, we avoid it!
How can I answer this? Hmm? Does one enjoy kidney stones? Does one wish for cancer? Does one enjoy a urinary infection? Does on like VD? Hmmm. Let me think about this. Oh yeah, I avoid Times Square like the mofocking plague it is!
what he said
Hahaha! Nice way to put it Kristy! Glad you agree! 🙂
LOL! So glad my fellow New Yorkers have the same mindset about Times Sqaure as I do! Thanks for reading!
I still plan on staying with you when I come UP there!!!!
LOL! I’ll bring you to dine in Guy Fieri’s horrible Times Square restaurant and hope you don’t throw UP!
Time Square is such a wacky place. I sort of love it for how excited everyone is around me. On any given day you can catch such odd things. I remember once going through it to get somewhere else and there were a bunch of people doing yoga. It was pretty cool. But I’m with you. Of all the places to eat in NYC, why choose Times Square? On a completely separate note, I love NYC-obviously-but I’m always shocked that it’s such a tourist attraction. I understand the lore of places where it’s always warm and there are beaches with blue water, but NYC is soooooo not peaceful. Am I being weird here?
I think we here in NYC have a love/hate relationship with it. Fun to see, but not to admit hanging out in.
NYC is the city of the world. That is why everyone wants to see it. The history, the buildings, the shows, the food. We have it all. We can always do LI or Jersey for beaches. NYC is electric. No other place like it.
Have a good weekend!
Naked cowboys? Just depends …
Those two dudes? No way, José … er, Phil …
And you have convinced me to never, ever, ever visit Times Square again.
Ha! The one dude is the Naked Cowboy. The other is that fat redneck comedian. I guess neither is your cup of tea!
Times Square is good for a quick trip, but then escape to see the real NYC! Thanks for reading!
So tell us, what do you REALLY think of tourists?
LOL! We actually like them. With some seasoning and a quick flash fry they come out nice and crispy. Along with a nice Chianti makes for a tasty meal. 🙂
Guy Fieri’s restaurant is a joke! He got so upset when it got bad reviews, but come on he is a ‘food celebrity’ not an actual talented chef. I put him in the same boat as rachel ray, can’t stand them!!!! I have no intention of eating anywhere near times square, the best food in any city is always in a neighborhood 🙂
You said it! The reviews from the locals are what to go by. As a big contributor on Yelp I know many people who live here, have tried it, and will never go there again. From what I have been hearing it is always empty. Just not good. Plus, he is never really there so it’s like a rowboat with no paddles. Dead in the water!
This was funny and as a born & raised New Yorker, I can totally relate. The absolute LAST thing I want to do on NYE is stand in the cold ALL day and night with a bunch of rowdy tourists to watch a ball drop. On the other hand, I do enjoy hanging out in Times Square (mostly during the summer) and I have gone out to eat there, it’s not that bad.
Thanks for dropping by my blog and reading! Seems like most of us NY’ers are on the same page with that one.
I like seeing Times Square lit up at night, but head over to Hell’s Kitchen as there are better spots to eat over there.
Have a great weekend! 🙂
I have been to Times Square Several Times. I hate going to crowded places, I like to go where it’s peaceful and quiet and where there’s less noise and traffic. Your article was very funny all the way through. I’m glad I read it tonight.
Thanks for reading and liking it.Yeah, Times Square is always crowded. If you ever have a chance head up to Carl Schurz Park on the UES. The park is kind of a hidden gem, and there are benches all along the water to sit and relax with a great view. Tourists won’t come over here, and it’s never too crowded.
When I first moved to New York, I liked Times Square. But a person can only take so much. I still think it’s kind of magical late at night, when the crowds die down, but it’s still light up so brightly it looks like day. Of course, that doesn’t make up for having to avoid it completely anytime I want to walk or drive west of Broadway. “Keep walking, people!”
I was the same way. Now I can’t stand going there. Late at night is the best to be there and see it all. Don’t ever try to drive through it. I hate when cabs take me through there during crowded times.
I always wonder about this when visiting NY. How do the locals deal with that ridiculous crowd? On our last visit, we caught a naked, mute, elderly man, dancing in the middle of Times Square. Well, he wasn’t completely naked, but he was so skinny his blue bloomers could barely stay up. I hate the crowd, as a visitor, and yes, those weird Elmo, Disney characters are so strange!!!
But NY is still my fave city to visit! Great food, and to be such a large place, it is easy to get around via the underground.
We just learn to deal with it, or avoid the overcrowded touristy areas!
The subways system here is the best even though we complain about it. 24/7 every day and you can get everywhere. Just try to avoild the weirdo naked guys!