NYC has some pretty ridiculous laws that you probably never knew existed…because you break them all the time. Here are seven things that are illegal in the city, but that you probably do (or would do) anyway:
1. Walking through the park after 1am
And this goes for any city park. Just because the gates are open, doesn’t mean you’re allowed in. This law probably exists for safety reasons, but it’s scary to think you could end up in front of a judge just for enjoying a romantic evening.
2. Owning a ferret
Yup, Jennifer Aniston’s cute, furry friend in Along Came Polly was actually contraband. NYC is one of the few cities in the country where keeping a ferret at home is illegal.
3. Living with more than 1 non-relative
If this law was actually enforced, every broke 20-something in this city would be in jail. In practice, it’s only enforced a few times a year to resolve unrelated issues like complaints from neighbors. Still…it leaves you feeling very vulnerable.
It’s in the city’s health code. And yeah, spitting on the sidewalk is gross, but not nearly as gross as all the pigeon crap all over the place. This concrete jungle is never going to be completely clean and shiny.
5. Wearing a Halloween mask
City law states that it’s illegal for two or more people to gather in public wearing a face covering. So if you’re the only one in your Manhattan-bound Halloween party with a mask, or you keep it off until you get to the party, you’ll probably be okay.
6. Wearing yoga pants
A woman can’t be on the street wearing “body hugging clothing” (uh…sexism?). The NYPD rarely enforces this law, but why is it even on the books at all?
7. Grilling with charcoal on the roof
You can only use a charcoal grill in a backyard or on a terrace at least 10 feet from the building. Using one on a rooftop or a balcony is illegal. But what is the difference, really, between a balcony and a terrace? Seems like we’re splitting hairs here.
Cover photo credit: Jay Miller/Flickr