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News / City Life

21 excuses that only work in New York

subway, now

New Yorkers may have a reputation for being rude, but the fact is we follow a completely different set of rules. While we might seem like flakes, there's just an understanding amongst New Yorkers that nobody should be held accountable for train traffic, the travails of apartment hunting, the temptation of free things and, of course, FOMO. So, the next time your friend/coworker/hook-up offers you one of these excuses, accept it graciously—you’re likely going to to be using one yourself before the week in through.

1. ”I was late to work and couldn't call because there was a sick passenger.”

2. ”We should break up. It’s not you, it’s the commute between our apartments.”

3. ”I can’t meet you there. I don’t go within 10 blocks of Rockefeller Center around Christmas.”

4. ”I know I said we’d hang out this weekend, but my friend invited me to her house in the Hamptons.”

5. ”I have to cancel our 9pm dinner plans—I’m still stuck at the office.”

6. ”Ah! I can’t leave now, Uber is surging at 3x.”

7. ”I know it’s Saturday night, but I’m staying in. I'm hungover from brunch.”

8. ”I’m spending the next three days fighting my bed bug infestation. You won't want to be near me!”

9. ”We have to order in—the line at Trader Joe’s was out of control.”

10. "Sorry for the delay! The A was suddenly rerouted on the F line."

11. ”I have to cancel, my friend got two free tickets to Hamilton.”

12. ”I’ll be late, I left my unlimited MetroCard at home and had to turn around to grab it.”

13. ”Stuck on the West side, there’s a parade.”

14. ”Can’t stay late, I have to move my car in the morning so I don't get a ticket.”

15. ”Have to go, my broker just told me about an apartment with a dishwasher that I have to see before someone else grabs it.”

16. ”Spent $75 on cocktails last night, so I can’t justify spending money on anything today.”

17. ”I'm busy that night—have to interview new Craigslist subletters.”

18. “Sorry, I can't stay at your place tonight because the subway isn’t going to your apartment after 11pm.”

19. ”Wasn’t prepared for the rain, so I had to stop and buy emergency rain boots and a $5 umbrella.”

20. "Sorry—I needed an iced coffee and the line took forever!" 

21. ”Won’t be leaving Brooklyn today—the L train is totally fucked.” 



Chris V

Most of these are just stupid--these things are not at all unique to New York(ers). 

Working until 9? Ok- welcome to the professional life for anyone under 40 in any city in the world. 

We should break up because of a long commute? Try living in Seoul. Or Manila. London. Apparently NY isn't even the longest in the US. SF is longer. And Denver. 

Uber is surging at 3X the price? Hmm... NY is not the only city to have rush hours, or baseball games, or concerts, or weekends... 

I had an ice coffee and the line took forever? People also drink coffee in other cities. Lines also form when places are busy at other places in the world. 

"I know I said we’d hang out this weekend, but my friend invited me to her house in the Hamptons"? Cringe.

Here's one excuse that might actually work, but maybe only outside NY: "I'm from NY, so I have no clue." 

Shane S

I've used 4,5, and 18 absolutely lol