12 Bizarre Fears Only New Yorkers Understand

Bianca Bahamondes Bianca Bahamondes

12 Bizarre Fears Only New Yorkers Understand

There’s plenty to fear when you step out of your apartment in the morning and hit the streets. Will you run into a pack of unfriendly rats? What about those pigeons? Will you fall into a floor cellar on your walk to work? Or potentially be kicked in the face by an undesired performer if you decide to take the subway?

Anything is possible in New York, and that’s not necessarily comforting. Here are only a few of the daily fears we’ve all agreed to live with in NYC.


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They just keep getting bigger, bolder, and grosser. Some aren’t afraid of humans, which is an even MORE upsetting realization. If one ever becomes a roommate I’m out of NYC within the hour.

Waiting in Lines

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If you’re a New Yorker you’re not waiting more than five minutes for anything…if that. Unless it’s for brunch or some bagels & lox. The only two exceptions and even these are rough to stick out. Pray that the people visiting you don’t want you to wait in a two hour line with them for cookie dough ice cream. Torture!

Mysterious Liquid Drops

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It’s not raining, yet somehow you still feel water hitting your head. Ew! It might be an A/C unit above you, but is it clean? And what if it isn’t an A/C? And what about when you get dripped on waiting on the subway platform?! Absolutely terrifying and downright disgusting.

Running into People

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Which is worse, the train or the street? Do you pretend you didn’t see them? On the train you’re stuck chatting until one of you have to get off, and hopefully it’s not the same stop! On the street it’s just as awkward. Do you stop and talk? Do you keep walking and just acknowledge them with a wave? Everything about it is just awful.

Bugs You Can’t Easily See

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Bedbugs and rat mites are true horrors that should only be allowed to live in nightmares. Rats and bedbug are bad enough, but rat mites (which come from rats) are even harder to detect than bedbugs and just as gross. I feel my skin crawling just thinking about it!

Being Pushed Into Subway Tracks

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For absolutely no reason.

Unless there’s absolutely no room to get around on the platform, you’ll rarely see a New Yorker testing their fate by walking on the yellow line. If and when you do, you’ll sense the fear everyone around you feels just watching you toe the line…literally.

Seamless Outage

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Whether the site itself is down or your order in 20 minutes late, it’s not okay. Starving is not an option, but neither is leaving your house, so…big problem.

Grates and Sidewalk Cellars

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Some may walk on them with confidence, but deep down they’re praying the doors beneath their feet will hold their weight and stay strong. Same goes for the floor grates. Sometimes they’re loose, but that’s a gamble you’ll take every time you step off the concrete path.


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Being sure you’ll pay all your bills and still be able to have a life is scary enough. Somehow every year it becomes a little more nerve-racking as you wait to hear if the rent will go up how much it increased. Remember to breathe.

Being Kicked in the Face

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By a subway performer. The performers say they know what they’re doing, but they’re just humans trying to backflip on a moving train. There may not be much room to break it down in the isle, but there’s certainly enough room for error!  Even if you’re pretending not to watch, a corner of your eye is keeping tabs on the situation to keep from being kicked straight in the face. Concussion? Not today!


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Above you, in front of you, around you. Just, no. How many times have you been walking when one swoops in just a little too close for comfort and you can actually feel the wind beneath their wings? A close call, but incredibly unsettling.

Winter Puddles

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You think it’s solid, or maybe just a small puddle, until you step off the sidewalk and all you see anymore is your knee.

Featured image source: Pixabay

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