New York vs. Paris
Lifestyle

New York vs. Paris

Why we need to stop comparing two of the world's most lovable cities.

12
Nikki Link

New York and Paris, as defined in one of my journalism classes, are “lovable cities.” They’re characterized by high costs of living, diverse populations, rich history, and the tendency to hold the world spellbound with their every move. While there are many other “lovable” cities out there, New York and Paris are unarguably at the top of the list. Many people want to live there, but few actually do.

For these reasons, people fall into the habit of comparing them. However, after spending the last three years dividing my life, more or less, between them, I must say it’s a habit we need to break.

Outside the fact that New York and Paris are both “lovable cities,” nothing about them can really be compared. Press your nose up against that transparent definition, and two very different landscapes will emerge. These cities aren’t reflections of each other, but two distinct entities gazing lovingly at one another through the wrong end of idealized telescopes.

New York-themed paraphernalia chokes Parisian department stores, and are worn or presented as a badge of honor by the city’s youth in much the same way the young people of New York think anything French-themed is chic. (Case in point, I own a tote that has the equivalent of “good job” written in French on the side. I digress that they’re grasp of English quotes are better than our French ones.)

Every time a petit French café opens in New York, a food truck selling tacos hits the rues of Paris. In short, they’re obsessed with each other, each city viewing the other as intriguingly foreign. Some find the mimicry dangerous, thinking that the two cities will eventually morph into the same tacky version of each other. I simply find it cute. The trends really come and go too quickly to corrupt either city’s soul.

New York is a loud cacophony of construction, sirens, and horns. It’s a gritty patchwork of little cities knitted together by the 8.4 million people who crisscross it every day. It’s fueled by an intoxicating concoction of frustration, passion, and some stale version of the American Dream™. It’s one of the few places in the world where even the happiest people feel a little alone. Those who come to stay eventually leave. Those who try to leave can’t help themselves from coming back for more.

Paris is an ancient and enchanting spider web of streets, twisting and changing names with every intention to get you lost. It’s 40 square miles crammed with enough monuments for ten cities, and enough restaurants to entice any gourmand for several lifetimes. It’s a ballet set to the soundtrack of poorly-played accordion music and the gentle sighs of those who gaze out their Haussmannian windows on a rainy day. It’s a city where the bakeries are always crowded, and the churches are empty. It’s one of the few places in the world where you can fall in love with nothing at all.

They are the sun and the moon, fire and water, earth and sky. They’re loveable cities that fascinate all, and truly entrap a few. As for me, both succeeded. When I’m in one city, part of me always longs for the other, a heart pulled in two different directions.

It’s a difficult sentiment to describe, but if I strain to look through the gap between my closed blinds, the swaying trees of New York City look like the sea. In Paris, they look like the clouds that airplanes skim across as they fall to earth. Before a storm, both are terribly beautiful.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Health and Wellness

This Survey Shows How Quarantine And Drinking Relate, And I Can't Say I'm Surprised

"5 o'clock somewhere" is more of a guideline now than ever.

As it stands, and my friends and I are finally 21. We're extremely excited to be able to go out to bars and "get lit" as the kids say, but due to the pandemic, all of our plans have been put on hold. We'd rather wait and go when it's safe than risk spreading the infection and hurting our loved ones. So, we've all been quarantining apart, getting on the occasional wine zoom call. This made me wonder if anyone else our age were doing the same thing.

Then, I discovered this survey: We Surveyed Millennials And Gen Z About Their Quarantine Drinking Habits — Cheers. Here are 3 things that I discovered through the survey results.

Keep Reading... Show less

One of the biggest discomforts I initially had with the stay-at-home order was feeling trapped and isolated from what was going on outside the walls of my house. Add that to living in a massive city, where social distancing is nearly impossible when doing something as simple as walking down the street.

Keep Reading... Show less

There is no such thing as a defined beauty industry. For those who believe so, it's time to open your eyes and look around you. Chilling in LA, Beauty Beez has been marketing the beauty industry towards people of color. Not to mention, Beauty Beez is a Black-owned beauty store. They have their own beauty bar that provides threading, waxing, facials, and braiding!

With the client at the center of the experience, our diverse group of professional and knowledgeable beauty experts are able to effectively educate and assist, while you explore. - Beauty Beez

You bet their fabulous mission statement was created by a female entrepreneur. Her name is Brittney Ogike and she is a mompreneur with a career in sports management. Beauty Beez came to life through mere observation or the lack of.

Keep Reading... Show less

I've always been a picture hoarder. No matter what happens with someone or how many pictures I have of the same thing, I hate deleting pictures. They all serve as memories to me, which is something I think is super important.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

These Phoebe Buffay Outfits Prove She's A '90s Fashion Icon — We're Replicating EVERY Single One

In case you needed another reason to love our favorite coffee shop singer.

NBC

I've always been described as the Phoebe of my friend group — not just for being a vegan, animal-loving people pleaser, but also for the false sense of confidence in my singing and athleticism.

I consider it a compliment to be labeled a Phoebe. Besides her general warmth, I was always drawn to her hippy-chic vibes and passion for environmentalism before it was even cool to be vegan or to care about the planet. The way she carelessly ran through parks flailing her limbs without a care mimicked her effortlessly eccentric style.

Keep Reading... Show less

'Tis the season for wedding fun and if you're hosting or helping plan a bachelorette party for the bride-to-be, you're going to want it to be a blast. Whether it's a social distance soiree or a virtual party, games will always spice up the time with the gals, so if you're looking for a fun and easy one to get the party started (and everyone drunk), this game is for you.

What's the name of the game? "Drink If: Bachelorette Party Edition." Here's how it works.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Talked To My Friend About Her Cystic Fibrosis And Wow, CF Patients Are WARRIORS

Not many people can say they've had a double lung transplant.

Alissa Katz

Forty percent of the United States lives with a chronic disease. These diseases are unique in their own way, but one thing is the same — every individual who lives with a chronic condition faces obstacles because of their disease.

Not only do these illnesses require a lot of education for the individuals who have them, but for the community as a whole. The more we as a society know about these diseases, the more well-rounded (and ideally, helpful) we'll be. If anything, we'll have a greater appreciation for the strength individuals with chronic conditions show on a daily basis.

Keep Reading... Show less

We've all been there... your brain was telling you "bad idea," but your heart was saying "but what if..." and now you're heartbroken. Whether you were actually in a relationship with the person or you never made it passed the "talking stage" before he broke your heart, it still hurts!

The good news? You're not alone and things will get better. Here are a few TikToks that will motivate you to move on, no matter what stage of the breakup process you're in.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments