30 Things People From The Bronx Have To Explain To Out-Of-Towners
By Kristin Norton
Originally published by Movoto.com
Boogie down in the BX with some Bleacher Creatures: Here’s the real Bronx tale.
1. There’s Only One Rule In The Bronx
You never call it New York. The second rule about The Bronx is: You never call it New York. This is “The Bronx.” Period.
2. And It’s The Real Guts Of NYC
Make no mistake about it. Manhattan is Wall Street. Brooklyn is for the artists and the Yuppies. But The Bronx is for the real folks.
3. That’s Why They’re “The” Bronx
Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island. Notice how The Bronx is the only one that gets the introduction? That’s no accident.
4. But You Can Call It BX For Short
No, BX doesn’t shorten the syllables of The Bronx at all. But it fits so much better on a hat. Kind of like when Christina Aguilera became Xtina, except cool.
5. There’s Only One Team In Baseball
And they are The Yankees. Everyone else is just playing make-believe.
6. In the Best Stadium In The World
Yeah, it’s not the Yankee Stadium of yesteryear that the die-hards grew up with, but it’s still fantastic.
7. Don’t Argue With The Bleacher Creatures
Bleacher Creatures are Yankees fans who have more than likely tried to sell their souls just to see The Yanks get through their division. More than once. Hell, every year. They yell, they scream, they swear, the cheer, they boo… And they do it all on one setting: Loud.
8. Don’t Believe Everything You Hear
The Bronx doesn’t always get the best reputation. But you would be very surprised by the difference of what The Bronx is versus what you hear that it is if you came here once in a while. The whole borough is on its way up. And it’s very exciting.
9. But Keep It Hush-Hush
Because, seriously, no one wants The Bronx turning into another Williamsburg. (You never saw this list.)
10. But The Bronx School Of Hard Knocks Can’t Be Beat
Education is invaluable. But so are some good, old-fashioned street smarts. In the Bronx, you not only gain street smarts and common sense, you learn how to mingle with literally everybody.
11. What’s On Their Minds
Just kidding. No one in The Bronx will ever get tired of explaining what’s on their minds. Opinions are the native language here. They’re strong and they’re loud and you never have to wonder where you stand.
12. There’s No Place Like Home
No matter where you go or how far away it is, you’ll always be most proud of your days spent in The Bronx. That’s just a fact. And when you’re from The Bronx, you can always come home.
13. But You’ll Probably Never Be “From” The Bronx
You’re not Jenny. You’re not from the block. Unless you were born or even raised here, then you live in The Bronx. That’s still something to be proud of. But there is a difference.
14. Believe It Or Not, It’s The Friendliest Borough
Obviously, this depends on who you run into. But overall, people in The Bronx are way less apprehensive than they are in the other boroughs. Here, you’ll know your neighbors. That doesn’t mean you’ll always like all of them, but you will know them.
15. Boogie Down Forever
The Bronx is the birthplace of hip hop. And that is non-negotiable. Grandmaster Flash. Sugarhill Gang. Stand up, pay some respect, and accept no substitutes.
16. Breakdancing Is Still Boss, Too
The Rock Steady Crew started right here in The Bronx. Breakdancing has always been one of the most underestimated things in the neighborhood. It should be called The Bronx: Electric Boogaloo.
17. It’s Not Just The Bleacher Creatures That Get Loud
If it were scientifically measured, The Bronx would probably register as the city with the highest decibel levels in the world. Everything is loud – from the people to the streets. Everyone here is just used to it.
18. Yes, That’s A Street Named Stickball
Stickball became stickball right here in The Bronx throughout the mid-20th century. It became such a popular pastime, they named a boulevard after it. They still have a professional league to represent them, Source: The Bronx Royals.
19. But You’ll Have More Fun With A Game Of Handball
Stickball was what your grandfather or your dad played, for the most part. Handball is way more popular these days.
20. Pelham Parkway > Rockefeller Center
Friends come to visit around the holidays and they inevitably want to see that giant tree from Home Alone. Guess what? Never happening. Unless those friends go by themselves, of course. The Pelham Parkway Christmas lights are so much more legit anyway.
21. Kiss Your Mother With That Mouth?
Yes, actually. They do. And their mom probably swears worse. Deal with it.
22. You Mean Bronx Pizza
Everyone think that because NYC has the reputation for the best pizza, that the obvious place to find the best slice is in midtown. Wrong. Opinions vary, but the truth is that John and Joe’s Pizza on Lydig Ave. is the king of all pizza. Rumor has it, John and Joe’s is the only pizza the Ninja Turtles will eat.
23. New England In BX
Outsiders are usually amazed that The Bronx has their own island. And even more amazed at how awesome it is. City Island is like a little New England fishing village with some awesome restaurants.
24. Little Italy Isn’t What It Used To Be
Sad, but true. A lot of people will boast it as being the true Little Italy. That was true years ago, but it’s really just riding its own coattails at this point. There are more non-Italians there than there are Italians these days. Of course, it’s still better than most other city’s Italian neighborhoods, so there’s that.
25. Bodegas For Everything
Outsiders seem to have some sort of love affair with Target. Which everyone in The Bronx knows is only because they don’t have bodegas. Can you find three eggs, half a bundle of plantains, pictures of the cashier’s kids, and a creepy cat waiting to trip you up at Target? Didn’t think so.
26. The Bronx Zoo: Believe The Hype?
The truth is, The Bronx Zoo is… wait for it… a zoo. It’s a good zoo, yes, but it’s still just a zoo. If you like animals, you’ll love it. If you don’t really care either way, it’ll still be just a zoo.
27. It’s Greener Than Kermit The Frog
Just because this is The Bronx doesn’t mean it’s all concrete. Take a trip to Pelham Bay Park, which is bigger than Central Park. Or there’s Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx Park, the Botanical Garden, and even The Bronx Equestrian Center.
28. Edgar Allan Poe Lived Here, Too, Baltimore
Edgar Allan Poe penned some of his best work including “Annabelle Lee” and “Eureka” during his last years, which he spent in a cottage in The Bronx. Don’t believe it? Go visit his cottage for yourself.
29. How To Cool Off
Summers get hot. Take a dip in The Bronx swimming pools. Otherwise known as hydrants –or “Johnny-pumps” for the old-schoolers.
30. In The End, It’s Still Not Staten Island
People make their Bronx jokes. Go ahead. “Haters gonna hate,” as Taylor Swift always says. It just means those Manhattan snobs and Brooklyn hipsters aren’t moving in here. But in the end, everyone can find a mutual comradery under the umbrella of understanding that no matter how bad it gets, at least they’re not in Staten Island.
Feature image via Flickr user Dwayne Bent.