dear runners in central park

Dear runners in Central Park,

I have one word for you. Deodorant. Okay, maybe two more. Daily showers. Deodorant and daily showers. Is that really asking too much? Really? I don’t think so. Most of you manage just fine. But today, oh today. The oderifficness (yes, it’s not a word) of a few of you was mind blowing.

With many wishes for weaker olfactory receptors,

dear you…inspired by a trip into jersey

Dear Woman I Rear-Ended,

I’m still not sure what exactly to say in response to what happened today. I’m not talking about the accident. I know why I hit you. It’s my one driving downfall and is to blame for almost every one of my accidents. It comes from being an aggressive driver. I don’t want to slow traffic down to merge onto a freeway, so as soon as I see the car in front of me start moving, I assume it is going to keep moving…and when I turn my head to check traffic so I can merge…well, you can see how that would be problematic if the car in front of me decides to stop. Again, not what has me speechless.

What I can’t wrap my head around is the fact that when you go out of your car to yell at me, it was only to yell at me. And then you proceeded to get back in your car and drive away. I mean, I hit your car. I hit it. My fault. And you were the one running. So strange. Kelly and I were completely dumbfounded.


A girl who is assuming that you’re driving around without car insurance/a valid license and/or current registration…what other explanation could there be?

Dear ZipCar,

Thanks for making the whole process of dealing with the accident relatively painless. Hopefully, you won’t decide I can’t rent from you anymore, although I wouldn’t blame you if you did. That said, seriously, the accident was super minor AND while it was my fault, I would like to use the previous letter as evidence that the woman I hit was crazy and therefore, I think the blame can be shared.

My apologies,


Dear Nordstrom,

Thank you for being so close to IKEA. Kelly will tell you that I was more than a little excited when I saw your name on the side of the mall. And thank you for having such wonderful customer service. When my Uggs ripped a couple of weeks ago after only having purchased them in December, I knew that if I could just wait until I was back to Utah (by a Nordstrom, with a car) you would exchange my shoes. Since I wasn’t planning on visiting you in NJ, it was just by chance that I was wearing said Uggs, and I definitely did not have a receipt with me. And yet, I knew that there would be no problems with exchanging them. And I was not disappointed.


A girl who wishes every company had the same commitment to customer service

Dear Crazy Lady in the Mall Parking Lot (not to be confused with the crazy lady I hit earlier),

Yes, I do realize that I was driving the wrong way up the parking lot aisle. I’m not stupid. I saw a parking space you were leaving and I knew I could just flip a quick u-turn into it. My favorite part of this little moment was the way you looked at me as if I had just run over a cat and laughed. So while, yes, I take full responsibility for my actions and recognize that you were right to judge me for going the wrong way, I also think that if this was the most shocking thing you saw all day, your life could use a little more excitement. I suggest starting with walking in a bike lane. I wouldn’t want you to be overwhelmed on your first attempt at living.

Warmest regards,

A girl who is sad that you probably went home and told your husband all about the abominable behavior you witnessed in the mall parking lot

Dear New Jersey Drivers,

I realize that my judgment of you might seem a little hypocritical given the aforementioned “accident”, but I’m still going to ask a few questions. Feel free to respond as appropriate. Merging? Yielding? Signaling? Stopping? Freeway signs that are actually helpful? Your answers to these questions will help me understand what it is you think about while you should be thinking about doing these things.

Good luck,


Dear Chili’s,

I just want you to know that, no matter how long I live in fabulous New York City, or how many Michelin rated restaurants I eat at (none…yet), I will always love you. Your thin chips and thick queso. Your delicious grilled chicken. Your molten dessert. And your free refills! Thank you for being by IKEA. Thank you for tasting the same in NJ, UT, AZ, CA, NV, etc, etc. Thank you for giving me an uneventful moment in an otherwise overly eventful day.

Many thanks,

A foodie who loves the gourmet as much as the everyday

Dear Gypsy Cab Driver,

So, you though you had the advantage because I was in Washington Heights where there just aren’t that many legit cabs available. And I was holding all of my purchases. And it was freezing and windy. Little did you know you were picking up a girl who knows how to negotiate. I know you were shocked when I asked you up front how much it was going to cost to get me to 96th and Broadway. And even more shocked when I said that was too much. And probably shocked again when I told you the second price quoted was fine, but it would be inclusive of a tip.

Thank for helping me feel like I am really becoming a New Yorker,


dear you…brought to you by people i do not understand

Dear woman/girl with the long, dark hair who grooms herself in the restroom on my floor at work,

The fact that I know that you groom yourself but don’t know who you are should be an indication that your grooming habits are kind of gross. As much as I like walking over to the sinks to wash my hands and seeing your long, dark strands of hair on the counter and in the sinks (yes, plural)…oh wait. I don’t. It’s disgusting. In all seriousness, do you just not see the evidence of your grooming? I can only imagine how disgusting your bathroom is at home.


The girl who is grossed out at least once a day when all she wants to do is wash her hands

Dear corporate girls everywhere,

I refer to you as “girls” as opposed to “women” because women would not dress the way you dress. Contrary to popular belief (at least as evidenced in my building), cocktail and party dresses/skirts are not actually workplace appropriate. I get that you don’t want to lose your femininity and perhaps there are some of you who realize that you might be able to get some of the gentlemen with whom you work to pay more attention to you by dressing inappropriately. That said, they are only noticing what you look like, which might get you attention, but is not going to get you a promotion any time soon; at least not one that will last.

A quick list of things that should not be part of your professional wardrobe: sheer anything without something underneath, dresses so short people wonder if you forgot to put on pants, skirts that don’t allow you to sit down for fear of exposing yourself, tops that dip low enough to show the bottom of your bra, and anything so tight that you worry about ripping seams when you move.

With much love and a desire to further the cause of appropriate femininity everywhere,


Dear female public restroom users everywhere,

Is it really so hard to wait the five seconds it takes for the toilet to finish flushing to make sure it has, in fact, flushed? I just don’t get it. As a guest in someone’s home would you ever not make sure the toilet flushed all the way before leaving the bathroom? Of course you wouldn’t because a) that would be disgusting and b) everyone would know it was you. Is it the anonymity of the public stalls that makes you feel safe in not worrying about such common courtesies?

With total disbelief,

The girl who is actually mature enough to flush toilets and make sure everything goes down

Dear idiot jaywalkers,

I qualify this because in NYC everyone jaywalks (unless you’re a tourist). So, idiot jaywalkers…while I do understand that pedestrians have the right of way when there is a walk signal, we don’t when there isn’t one, so it might be helpful to actually pay attention to the lights so you know what’s going on. If you don’t know an intersection well enough, then use some kind of caution before blindly walking across the street.

While the reality is that this in no way negatively impacts my life, I’m annoyed on behalf of the drivers in the northbound left-hand turn lane at Broadway and 96th because, almost without fail, one of you idiots causes one of them to miss a light EVERY LIGHT.

In the hopes that this letter keeps at least one person from being an idiot jaywalker,


Dear tourists anywhere other than Times Square,

When you stop to look at something, don’t do it in the middle of the freaking sidewalk when foot traffic is moving! Is it really that difficult to move out of the way to look up at the big, shiny buildings? I get it. New York is awesome. I live here. I appreciate that you want to visit this amazing place. I do. And I have lots of patience for you when I’m intruding on “your” territory (namely Times Square–and if I worked there I might feel otherwise, but I don’t), but seriously, have a little respect. Please. For the love of people who work in this city and pay a butt-load of money in taxes so that you have a nice city to come visit.


A girl who really tries to be an unobtrusive tourist wherever she travels

Dear idiot subway riders,

Again…”idiot” to differentiate from the intelligent subway riders. Is it really that hard to understand that when you who are waiting to get on the crowded train at 8 am stand right in front of the doors, it makes it so people can’t get off the subway, thus impeding your ability to get on it? I just don’t get how you don’t get that. Every day it’s the same thing. It is never going to change. I know that you really want to get on there right away so you can get the one empty seat. I do. But seriously, you shouldn’t be worried about getting a seat because you should be giving it to the pregnant woman, or the elderly man with a cane instead of rushing the doors that you can’t get in to push past everyone just so you can sit down for your two stop ride.

And while we’re at it, could you please have your tickets out BEFORE you get to the turnstile?

In high hopes (even if they are futile) that you will some day get it,


Dear inconsiderate subway riders,

(You are not dumb, you are just jackholes.) There is a pattern to subway riding that should be followed. During morning commutes, before the kiddies get on the train to go to school, no one wants to hear you talking. And, even less than they want to hear you talking do they want to hear your music blaring through your headphones. If you get on the train and you hear nothing…that would be an indication that nothing is what everyone on the train wants to hear.

As for the rest of the day, we still don’t want to hear your crappy music through your headphones.

With little love and less affection,


And for my final letter, a repeat topic because apparently there are still people who don’t get it (because, you know, all of my other letters have worked):

Dear escalator riding tourists and non-commuters,

I understand that you are not in a rush. That’s fine. You don’t have to be. But you should be conscientious of the people around you who are in a rush and are using the escalator as a means of speeding their ascent/descent, rather than a resting point in their “journey”. I understand that all of the stairs in New York can make you tired. I do. It was an adjustment for me. So stand on the escalator…just stand to the RIGHT. It’s not a difficult concept really. And while I do get that some of you lovebirds can’t stand the thought of not being right next to each other every second of every minute of every day of your vacation in this lovely city, you need to get over it for the 30 seconds you are on the escalator so that you can stand single file and let those of us that have places to go get past.


The girl who knows that you can still be touching each other even if you’re not next to each other

dear you…inspired by a post on a housing google group

Dear Married People,

When posting about your life circumstances, is it really necessary to say things like “our internship”? I mean, is it really both of you who will be doing the internship? I don’t think so. At least, in my experience, companies aren’t in the habit of hiring married couples for one internship.
I get that you are a couple and a family unit and that you do things together, but other spouse…don’t you have other things you will be doing? I mean, does your whole world really so revolve around your interning husband/wife that you can’t just say “his/her internship”. All that this does is make me think that you don’t have a life of your own and that you really do define yourself by what your spouse is doing. Seriously, have a little pride in what you do. There’s nothing wrong with moving somewhere for your husband’s/wife’s internship or job, but don’t pretend that it’s yours, too. (And let’s be honest, I’ve never actually heard a husband say things like this.)
On that note, I also get that when my married classmates were going through school, their spouses were having a unique experience, as well…but I just don’t love it when spouses would say things like “we finish school in two weeks” or “we just got a great job”. Must you define yourself by your spouse’s accomplishments? Is it really so bad to say, “My husband is finishing school in two weeks and I am so excited”? Everyone knows that you helped him get through school. Everyone knows that you probably helped him research all of the companies with which he interviewed. Don’t you have things you’re doing? If you have children and you are a SAHM, don’t you feel like that is a huge accomplishment?
Someone please explain to me why people (well, women) do this. It just seems to undermine our value and abilities and make us seem like we were created just to be an extension of our husbands.
I really do want to understand. Really. But I’m not sure if I ever will.
A girl who hopes she never turns into a wife and mother who only defines herself by her husband’s and children’s accomplishments

dear you…inspired by the dearth of dear you posts in recent months

Dear tourists, visitors, and otherwise ignorant temporary residents of NYC,

It’s pretty basic. In fact, even in London, where they drive on the left it’s the same. When you are on an escalator, if you’re not walking, you should be on the right. I don’t care if you do have luggage. Put it in front of you. Put it behind you. I don’t really care, so long as you aren’t blocking the left side of the escalator where the rest of us are attempting to walk. 
A girl who really and truly wants to understand how you don’t know that

Dear NY Cab Drivers,

You suck. I cannot believe that you are actually licensed to operate vehicles!
With much fear and trepidation for the ride I have to take to JFK tomorrow,

Dear non iPhone users,

If you’re not going to buy an iPhone or some other such phone that allows you to figure out where the crap you are on a map, you better just figure out how to read a regular map and use it. It’s annoying. 
A girl who is never lost in New York

Dear Crazy Neighbor,

Stop smoking pot. Stop drinking. Stop sleeping around. Seriously. I can hear how miserable you are on a daily basis. All you do is fight with the flavor of the week. I don’t really care. My fan blocks out the noise. But really, how are you this stupid? I just don’t get it.
Oh, and can you get all your friggin’ bottles off the landing. It looks so trashy!
Best of luck…crazy chick,

Dear Restaurant Week,

I want to thank you for introducing me to so many great places…however, my arse isn’t exactly the uber fan that I am. In fact, you may want to go away for a little while. Just a thought. Can’t wait to see you next summer!
A girl who has finally just accepted that she will never be skinny because she likes food way too much (although she’s still hoping to lose some serious weight…because she does want to be healthy)

Dear 18-200 mm Nikkor Lens,

I love you! 

Dear Tina,

I love my hair. I may not be able to afford to eat this week, but I’m thinking it was worth it. I also loved just how New York you are…I know some people might take offense to you telling them that the color and cut of their hair isn’t working, but I loved it – although I suppose the fact that you prefaced it by telling me what great hair I have naturally probably didn’t hurt. I also really appreciated the fact that your preference is to get my hair to a color that only requires twice-a-year maintenance. It made the cost a little more bearable.
My hair thanks you and I thank you.

Dear body,

I know that I don’t let you sleep enough. I know that I push you and push you and push you. But really, this whole flu/cold thing you are trying to make happen…could you just let it go already? I only have three more weeks in New York and it is really cramping my style.
The girl who has been with you for 31 years and thinks you really ought to no better