A Guide To Becoming The Ulimate NYC Tourist

A Guide To Becoming The Ulimate NYC Tourist

How to be NYC's most notorious tourist.
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Aside from the gorgeous skyscrapers, the never-ending night life, and pushing the envelope for weird, New York City is also known to be the tourist capital of the world. Every corner you turn, you'll see someone flash a camera or a family trying to figure out which way is downtown. Here's the guide that will help you become NYC's most notorious tourist.

1. I Love NYC merchandise.

It's by far the most cliché thing to wear. Everyone, including tourists, knows that it's just that thing that you look at and say, "Really?"

Nevertheless, it remains a popular hit within the NYC tourist culture.

2. The selfie stick.

The selfie stick has become a hit in tourist culture. You're not an NYC tourist until you have a selfie stick and proceed to obnoxiously stick your hand out in front of people to snap that quick picture of you and Madame Tussauds' Morgan Freeman wax figure.

3. Abercrombie & Fitch.

Abercrombie & Fitch, A.K.A a European tourist's wet dream, is by far the most cheap, popular, and "cool" fashion in the eyes of NYC tourists. If you aren't wearing a "A&F 1995 Crew Champions" t-shirt or ripped jeans with flip flops, you're not a tourist.

4. Tourist wall.

This is a must if you want to be a NYC tourist. Every tourist feels the need to take up the entire sidewalk with their group of 10, in the most fast-moving cities of the world, while carrying bags of clothes (probably abercrombie and fitch) and pointing at buildings. If you don't piss off someone trying to catch the the subway or a bus back home, you're not a tourist.

5. Subway delirium.

"But this is supposed is taking us uptown not downtown, right?"

On the subway, the most touristy thing to do is to talk and laugh at the top of your lungs as your form of communication with other tourists. It's a rare language. You also have to pull out a gigantic subway map to annoy the living hell out of everyone around you. Most importantly, you have to try to fit in your school of fellow tourists in a jam-packed, oven, of a subway during rush hour.

6. Fanny packs.

The fanny pack has been the "day one" tourist feature. Fanny packs were most prominent in the 90's, so if you ever traveled as a kid, you probably used your fanny pack to stash your Nintendo and your games. However, it still is used by many tourists, mostly elderly and middle aged, but it's definitely a must have if you're looking to keep your subway map and event schedule in a secure location. You're not a tourist without one.

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If You Give A Girl A Little Brother

You've given her the world.
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I remember back to my childhood, standing at the top of the steps yelling down to my parents "Why did you decide to have another child?" I remember riding in the backseat yelling "Mom, was I not good enough for you?" as my brother threw snow at me .

I remember crying when my mom made us share our first cell phone. I remember playing in a pool at a waterpark, and my dad couldn't play with me because my brother couldn't swim and needed my dad to be with him. I played by myself, thinking "They must have not wanted a girl when they only pay attention to him."

But now, at almost 22, I realized that the best gift God has ever given me was my little brother.

Give a girl a little brother, and you give her a pain in her ass.

Oh, he'll be annoying. He'll get in the shower just because you said you were going to. He'll start talking every time you do. He'll pull stupid pranks, he'll make you listen to bogus music, he'll make you watch stupid tv shows, he'll smell up the bathroom (and probably smell himself.) and boy, I promise there will be day's you will resent him. But he's just training for living with your husband one day.

Give a girl a little brother, and you give her a role.

As a big sister, I had somebody copying all my moves. If I did something, so did he. If I didn't eat something, neither did he. If I didn't like somebody neither did he. He was like a little shadow that did everything I did, so I was always motivated to make good choices and make him proud of me.

Give a girl a little brother, and you give her a rough side.

I wouldn't have done half the things I did if it wasn't for him. Play basketball in the drive way, spend hours on our bikes, spend the summer days in the pool, or down at the park. I wouldn't have learned that it's okay to get in the dirt and have some fun. I wouldn't have played half the made up, imaginary games we played every day. I wouldn't have played with Hot Wheels, or Lincoln Logs, or Leggo's. I would have played with Barbies by myself all day long, and what's the fun in that?

Give a girl a little brother, and you give her the best friend she'll ever have.

In the end, when our parent's both pass away, I won't be alone, because I will have my little brother. When the world gets tough, and everyone turns away from me, he will always be there. No matter where he end's up in life, I know he will drop everything and come running when I'm in need.

For Christmas this year, I bought my brother his first tattoo. We got matching tattoo's on our sides. Our lives our different now, because we're grown up and live on opposite sides of the state. But no matter where we go in life, if we look up, we will be looking at the same sun and moon. We are made up of the same matter, 'made' by the same people, and love each other more than I think we'd like to admit.

Alex is my true other-half.

Give a girl a little brother, and you made her whole.

Cover Image Credit: Abby Engel

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11 Places You Should Visit In Germany

Castles, nature and good beer - and a lot more than that!

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Sure, the United States of America are on the other side of the globe, but maybe one or two of you dare the experience of visiting Germany? Right in the middle of Europe, Germany has a population of around 83 million people. Compared to the US's 326 million people it seems fairly small. But that's where I live.

When I went abroad and lived for a year in Illinois I realized how little the average American knew about my country. So here are 11 things that are definitely worth a trip to Germany!

1. Oktoberfest

Everyone knows Oktoberfest, I guess. It's the world's largest beer festival and travelling funfair, held annually in Munich, Germany. Over six million people from all around the world attend the two-week event every year. Fun fact: in 2013, 7.7 million litres (1,700,000 imp gal) of Oktoberfest Beer were consumed!

2. Neuschwanstein Castle

Germany has to offer some breath-taking castles. Schloss Neuschwanstein is a Romanesque Revival palace on a rugged hill in above the village of Hohenschwangau, in the south of Germany. Over 1.3 million people visit the beautiful castle annually, enjoying the views and panoramas around it.

3. Brandenburg Gate

Built on the orders of Prussian king Frederick William II, the 18th-century neoclassical monument can be found in Berlin. It is one of the best-known landmarks of Germany and was often a site for major historical events. Today, the Brandenburg Gate is considered not only as a symbol of the tumultuous history of Europe and Germany, but also of European unity and peace.

4. Sanssouci

Sanssouci, a palace in Rococo style, was the summer palace of Frederick the Great, King of Prussia. It's located near Berlin and is often counted among the German rivals of Versailles. The palace's name is a French phrase, which translates as "without concerns", "without worries" or "carefree". It symbolises that the palace was a place for relaxation rather than a seat of power.

5. The Black Forest

Although Germany is often associated with good cars and fast Autobahns, this country has to offer a lot more nature than you thought. The magical Black Forest with its dark, densely-wooded hills is one of the most visited upland regions in Europe. It's a heaven for hiking, skiing, or relaxing in one of the magnificent spa facilities.

6. Reichstag

With the Bundestag convening here officially since April 1999, the Reichstag is now the second most visited attraction in Germany. The historic edifice has a huge glass dome at the very top with a 360-degree view of the surrounding Berlin cityscape. The main hall of the parliament below can also be seen form the inside the dome.

7. Rugen Island

Rügen is Germany's largest island by area and is located in the Baltic Sea. The island is linked to the mainland by road via the Rügen Bridge and is a very popular tourist destination. Long sandy beaches, lagoons and open bays characterize Rügen, which Jasmund National Park was awarded the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

8. Gedenkstätte Berliner Mauer

The Berlin Wall Memorial commemorates the division of Berlin by the Berlin Wall and the deaths that occurred there. The monument includes a 60-metre long section of the wall as it was when the Wall actually fell. The Gedenkstätte was created in 1998 by the Federal Republic of Germany and the Federal State of Berlin.

9. Romantic Rhine

The Rhine Valley ranks among the most impressive regions of Germany in terms of its culture and history. Hillside castles, regional cuisine, hospitality and vineyards await you in this area. With medieval castles perch high above the river alternate with forested hillsides, attracting many tourists on boat trips.

10. Cologne Cathedral 

Cologne Cathedral is a Catholic cathedral in Cologne. It is the seat of the Archbishop of Cologne and is a renowned monument of Gothic architecture. It was declared a World Heritage Site and is one of Germany's most visited landmarks, attracting an average of 20,000 people a day.

11. Zugspitze Massif

The Zugspitze massif creates a frontier between Germany and Austria and is surrounded by steep valleys. This area of outstanding natural beauty offers many attractions for its visitors. Excellent panoramic restaurants, tunnels completed with viewing windows, or a viewing platform at the very top are just a few.

If you've never been to Germany, you should definitely put this country on your travel list. You won't regret it, I promise!

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