One of the most exciting things to happen so far in 2015 is the release of the entire series of Friends on Netflix. Even if you don’t have the kind of free time that I do—to watch all of them, in order, in binge-watching fashion—it’s a comfort for anyone who was alive in the ’90s to know that this gem is right at your Netflix-subscriber fingertips. Sure, some parts of Friends is a glamorized version of living in the rough and tumble world of New York City, but sometimes, the show is really spot-on when it comes to being a twentysomething in NYC (or anywhere for that matter). Below is a list of bits of the Friends’ NYC lifestyles that, quite frankly, couldn’t BE any more accurate:
Moving is hard because everything is small
There are few things more real than the struggle of Ross moving in to his new abode in Ugly Naked Guy’s former apartment. First, the delivery charge for his couch is as much as the couch itself, even though he only lives three blocks away from the store, therefore forcing Rachel and Chandler to help him move this normal-sized couch up a NYC apartment-sized staircase. Spoiler alert: Those staircases are narrow. Every time I walk into someone’s apartment, including my own, I often think, “What sort of Mary Poppins-like magic allowed them to fit all this furniture up those stairs?!” Therefore, we are left with one of the most memorable Friends moments of all time: The pivot.
Everyone has a Chandler
You know, I might even be the Chandler of my own friend group. He’s snarky, he’s cynical, he’s sarcastic—but no matter how jaded, he’s still lovable. Chandler’s lack of confidence and family issues make him insecure, but he’s still got that adorable, charming something about him that makes us want him around. Everyone has a friend that has a job that is really unclear (He’s a transponder, right?!), and the rest of you will never figure out what it is. And although, in true New Yorker fashion, he may be a pessimist most of the time, Chandler is one half of the greatest Friends couple (Sorry, Ross-and-Rachel lovers, but it’s true. #ChandlerandMonica4ever). Plus, life would be dull without Chandler’s dry sense of humor (“Could she BE more out of my league?”)
Everyone’s life is a mess
Let’s face it: Almost no one has it together in their 20s, or early 30s. Friends shows a bunch of twenty-somethings (eventually thirty-somethings) struggling to try to get their lives together. Their jobs are a joke, they’re broke, their love lives are D.O.A. It’s like their always stuck in second gear, ya know? (Sorry, I’m done.) The point is: No matter what struggles they go through, their group of friends becomes their chosen family, their support system, and for the most part, the one thing in life that is always keeping them on solid ground. Remember when Rachel showed up, having left someone at the alter with no life skills or work ethic to speak of? Or when Chandler dated Janice because he was so lost and lonely? Or Ross’ three divorces? (You get the point.) Sheesh. What a mess.
Rent-controlled beautiful big apartments are something to risk everything you own over
I get that Monica and Rachel’s beautiful apartment in the heart of Greenwich Village isn’t exactly affordable on a sometimes employed chef and sometimes employed waitress/Bloomingdale’s buyer salary, BUT the writing staff does a nice job of covering up that flaw with the explanation of a rent-controlled apartment given to Monica by a relative, which would keep the cost low. That makes this apartment a hot. commodity. In New York. Seriously, any New Yorker would do unspeakable things for that sort of space in that sort of location with a controlled rent. Which is why the (arguably top 10) episode where Chandler and Joey win the apartment and then Monica and Rachel go to extremes to get it back is so very, very real.
They always hang out at the same places
Sure, NYC has tons of culture and experiences. There are roughly 1 million restaurants on every block of every neighborhood (that’s a guesstimate, but you get my point). But everyday those Friends are hanging out at Central Perk with their trusty Rachel-obsessed barista Gunther, and you know what? That’s SO real. Even though living in New York City gives us a wide array of options, my friends and I will always return to the same bars, coffee places, restaurants, etc., and often times, know the people who work there on a first name basis.
And if you’re in NYC for Blogger Bash, you can probably find tons of group walking tours that you can visit popular spots from the Friends TV series. OR you can do your own little Friends tour on your own.
- Friends apartment building: You can stop by and see that familiar exterior of the apartment building where the Friends lived (Ross lived with Chandler and Joey briefly in season 5, so don’t tell me they didn’t “all” live there at some point). I mean, take a look at it, it almost feels like home to you too, doesn’t it?
- The Lucille Lortel Theatre: Any while you’re in Greenwich Village, be sure to stop by The Lucille Lortel Theatre, where everyone’s favorite actor Joey Tribbiani made his spectacular Off-Broadway debut (and fell in love with his co-star—awww!). Although the theater’s calendar doesn’t yet have their shows for June, you can check back and even get tickets to a show if you’re staying through the weekend.
- Bloomingdale’s: Looking to do some New York shopping? Why not stop by Bloomingdale’s, where fashionista Rachel Greene landed her first job—and her first post-Ross boyfriend, “Joshua.” Rachel may not have had complete control of anything in her life, but the girl sure did know how to dress. The big Bloomingdale’s on 59th and Lexington is right by the subway, right near the park, and close to tons of other great NYC shopping. Who knows? You might even get promoted to Ralph Lauren exec.
- Pulitzer Fountain: If you’re heading up toward the park, you should definitely stop by the beautiful Pulitzer Fountain. The fountain featured in the Friends opening credits is incredibly recognizable, even without all of the living room furniture set up in front of it. The fountain is right by the entrance of the Park at Grand Armory Plaza at 59th Street and 5th Ave (also right near Bloomingdale’s! See what I did there…)