We recently got this book as a gift (thanks, Grace!). It catalogs the most beloved institutions of New York and gives each of them a lukewarm reception. It notes, for instance, that the Empire State Building hasn't been the tallest structure in the world since the erection of the Griffin Television Tower in 1954...in Oklahoma.
On Ellis Island:
"Sure, Ellis Island's an important part of history. But it turns out you can look up all that ancestry stuff online."
"You know what New York pizza reminds us of? It reminds us of every pizza, everywhere. Tampa pizza. Des Moines pizza. Albuquerque pizza. You know why? As it turns out, pizza is just cheese and sauce on top of bread."
On Times Square:
"If we wanted a seizure, we'd induce it ourselves."
Now, I'm a lot more enthusiastic about New York than the authors of this book, but some of the entries DO hit close to home. For instance, the one about bagels: "We never had a bad bagel in New York. But, then again, neither of us could recall ever having a really bad bagel anywhere, ever."
I'd agree with that, and add that the chewiness of New York bagels really makes my jaw work. I'm too lazy to do this much chewing, New York. Just give me a Noah's.