7 Ways Living on Long Island Prepares You for Life

From living on Long Island, I’ve learned that a beach is a man’s best friend, that proximity to New York City is an absolute must and that a car can easily be turned into a closet. Below, I apply some of those lessons to a wider existence.

1. Patience (and Lots of it) is a Virtue That Will Bring You Far

image: facebook.com/mtalirr

image: facebook.com/mtalirr

The Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) is the most despicable mode of transportation. Although relatively clean and with trains running relatively often, it is, in actuality, never on time. Let’s take a moment to discuss the absolute absurdity of having a major New York transportation hub, Penn Station, look that… Ugly? Smell that… disgustingly? Function so… inefficiently? The only way to survive such perilous commute is to remember to just… breathe.

2.  Music Will Save You From Any Misery
Given the long distances that characterize the Island, cars are always a must. Although sitting in traffic isn’t ideal, doing so while listening to Adele’s new album (or the latest This American Life podcast) can turn the whole ordeal into a spiritual experience of sorts.

3. There Ain’t Nothing Like a Neighborhood Bar 

image: facebook.com/edisons ale house

image: facebook.com/edisons ale house

I’m a cocktail bar’s biggest fan. However, sometimes, all you need is a glass of whiskey at a bar that feels like an extension of your living room. Read J. R. Moehringer’s The Tender Bar for a look inside a quintessential Long Island bar obsession. Treasure your barmen, folks.

4. Your Devices Should Always be Charged

After the LIRR, the Long Island Power Authority is the Island’s most embarrassing infrastructure. Constant loss of power, horrible customer service and exorbitant prices taught me one lesson: always charge your phone.

5. Leggings Are Not Pants and Sweats Should Only be Worn at the Gym

Also: change before running errands after your gym routine and, while we’re at it, coffee should not be a part of your workout outfit (and iced coffee isn’t considered actual coffee by the rest of the world’s population).

6. It’s Not in Your Head: Billy Joel Really Does Get You
The Long Island-based artist takes us away from our hometowns and brings us to the world at large, both through his musical lyrics (which scream Long Island living) and his residency at Madison Square Garden. So, use Billy Joel as your way out once you realize that…

7. …New York City is Magnificent

Photo 3

A big appreciator of all things Long Island, I still find Manhattan to be the most phenomenally exciting destination in the entire world and I am oh-so-deeply grateful for the Island’s proximity to the center of the universe.