For as long as anyone can remember, New York City has always been known as (self-declared or otherwise) the proverbial, "The City That Never Sleeps."
Sure, you can trace that title back pretty far in history (most famously to Sinatra who sang, "Theme from New York, New York," originally written by John Kander and Fred Ebb), but for the sake of trivia, the Bowery, back in 1892, was described as the, "Argus head of New York, and it is the eye that never sleeps."
Fun fact, right? Who knew?
But why is NYC the city that never sleeps? Well, that's easy.
But why is NYC the city that never sleeps? Well, that's easy.
Bars don't close until 4 a.m., we're both the cultural melting pot and epicenter of the world, and simply put, there's endless amounts of cool sh*t to do when everybody else in the country is fast asleep.
Then, when we finally do go to sleep, we're back at it, grinding away, working the same busy hours as everyone else. But times, as they always have been, are changing. For good or for ill, the generation primed to take over the world is slowly and sleepily chiseling away at that reputation.
For whatever it's worth, and whatever shifting cultural values this idea might redefine in the process, NYC is no longer the city that never sleeps.
Inflammatory statement? Possibly. Debatable? Absolutely. Wildly unfounded? Not quite. Let's face it: we love sleep. We are ready for it. Good sleep, bad sleep, whatever. We are never as happy as we are when we climb, dead limbed and desperate, into our beds.
Between what is required of the millennial generation-- the expectations we've "failed to meet" (like, really?) or otherwise --and what we require of the world we interact with, sleeplessness in the Big Apple isn't exactly trending right now.
Now read on. Here are 7 reasons why that's all so true.
1. Netflix and chill
We're such a far cry from "Let's 'Hang Out'" that millennial hookup culture is measured with this blacklight scrutiny as an epidemic manifest in perpetual immatur-- pffft... these people can kick rocks. We're no worse off than mom and dad. We just move a little quicker. Oh, and we're not divorced.
But back to the point. Netflix & Chill isn't limited to Netflix. This same principle-- and let's be clear: the implication in a text that reads "Netflix & Chill? ;)" is that the sender is essentially asking for casual sex-- applies to any streaming service. Netflix just happens to be the benefactor of catchiness.
There's Hulu & Hook-Up, Amazon Primed and Ready for Sex, Roku and Roll-Around-on-the-Floor-Naked, Redbox and Butt Touching, Apple TV and Two of-- okay, none of those actually exist, but you've found prime real estate if you've got the hook-up on a hook-up with all of these.
People may have stopped watching network TV, but they didn't stop watching TV. If we're Netflix & Chilling, we're soon too tuckered out to do anything more. We're enjoying a solid post-coitus cuddle in bed, and then we're sleeping.
If we can finagle this situation on the reg, we're not going out. Facts.
2. Getting better sleep
casper Mattress box or standing desk?
Again, is there a better feeling than walking a couple of miles around the city, climbing three stories to your repulsively tiny apartment, the long-awaited bitter cold finally biting at your knees, only to find the most comfortable bed in the world waiting for you?
We're not stupid. We value sleep. Mom and dad said, "Get your 8 hours," so we listened. We also heard that sleeping more than 9 hours on the reg is not so great, so we're listening to that, too.
We're not just listening though, we're actively seeking out the best way to sleep. We can't afford to waste our time or money (more on that later) with those memory foam mattresses that nearly swallow us whole. We want every side to be the cool side of the pillow.
We're exploring every possible option to make sure the little sleep we get is the absolute best possible sleep we can get-- not because it feels great in the morning, but because we know how essential it is. So, we're turning to Casper to get the job done.
We're literally tired of bad sleep. We've tried everything, and while there are few universal truths in this world, there is, in fact, the one perfect mattress for everyone. A little much? Yeah, but hey, we're sleeping well.
3. Health concerns
costanzagrams Every Sunday I wake up feeling like death #costanzagrams
Remember when people back in the 70s and 80s did a bunch of cocaine in clubs, got all sexed up in bathroom stalls, had unwanted pregnancies, got married, stayed married-- for the kids, Jerry. We'll do it for the kids --got divorced, wondered why their kids didn't have jobs that paid off their student loans immediately, and then resented them happily never after?
Suffice it to say, we're good on all that. Maybe we still going to clubs, and maybe we're hooking up in unisex bathrooms (why not?). Sure, we're still doing stupid stuff like smoking fake grass, having hallucinations, and nearly dying.
We're also at the forefront trendy, albeit somewhat confused, health movements.
As kitschy as it sounds, we've popularized gluten-free and veganism to the point where it's exhausting. We're cross-fitting, hookin' up and gettin' down, and bringing national attention (for good or for ill) to image problems, obesity, and bullying
Yes, we drink a lot. Yes, we're hungover. Yes, we're going to struggle not to bring up our paleo diet right when we walk into the office. Thursday's the new Friday, but every day is a good day not to die. As idiotic as it sounds fundamentally, health has become a bragging right.
We are quickly realizing the consequences of going out every night if our line of work doesn't call for it, and recognizing that is one of the most important signs of adulthood.
4. Tired of bad experiences
socialalertsnyc SocialAlerts.com/nyc/ via @marqueeny ⚫️ #marqueeny > We 💜 @DashBerlin He returns this Saturday ⚫️ #NewYork #NYC Events by #SocialAlertsNYC | #NYCNights #NYCNightLife #NYCParties #NYCClubs #NightLife #NYNY #NYCPromoter #NYCParty #PartyInNYC #Nightclubs #ILoveNY #Music #Party's #Rave #Dance #Techno #House #EDM #Bass #PLUR #DubStep ⚫️ To REQUEST that we include your event in our feed, post it in YOUR feed THEN DM it to us. Promoters ANY attempt to sell tix / guestlist / tables / follows / services / merchandise in our comments will get you blocked immediately https://www.instagram.com/p/BAPuyW8EMtO
This is more of an objective observation of millennialism as a whole than it is something readily observed in practice, but it's the major underlying theme in all of the points here. To break it down easily, we're tired of getting gypped.
We don't want to devote our time, money, and energy to something that doesn't pay off. Sometimes this keeps us from doing anything, but rarely are we set against something without experiencing it firsthand. That's why there's user generated feedback channels like Yelp.
We want to get a solid idea of what we're about embark upon just as much as businesses want to know how we're thinking. The internet is a dark, dangerous thing. We're not afraid to say everything and anything, and we definitely read everything everybody else has said.
We can look at the disappearance of club crowds at later hours as a good measuring stick, and you could always look at the half-lives of NYC clubs and bars themselves (the problem with that is, of course, places open with a bang and close their doors much quieter sometimes months later because, well, welcome to New York).
Instead of risking an uninspiring night out in the meatpacking district where NBA players get stabbed, waiting in a long ass, velvet roped line, only to empty our wallets for mid-shelf vodka we could get for a cold hundred cheaper in a liquor store, we're careful to curate our experiences the best that we can.
Sure, we coined the phrases YOLO and FOMO, but we're doing so now with a more discerning eye for what the world has to offer. Sometimes that's as simple as a quality meal out and drinking at home.
makeupartist.angela REGRAM @fuckjerry 😩😂 @kermitallenjr @chelsrr7 @tor_pants @amandajparton #Adele #adeleconcert #money #broke #pain
How much do we really need to say here? Facts are facts: This city. Is too. Damn. Expensive. We're mindful of that, but we're determined to live here regardless (until we have disappointing children of our own and head out to the suburban hell-scapes of New Jersey).
Much like our determination to get better sleep, we're not stupid: we're ready to acknowledge how bad we are with money. We've coined the term life-hack, and as obnoxious as its usage is, it's a prominent aspect of our daily lives.
How can we afford the best of our city? First, we curate the best possible experiences. We're ready to try new things, but we have the resolve to spare ourselves the overrated unless there's a moment that absolutely demands it.
We're adult-ing to the best of our ability, and sometimes that means denying ourselves the opportunity to drink into the daylight. Sleep is great, but waking up with money is even better.
6. Apps for convenience
stephnyikos AN APP FOR E-V-E-R-Y-THING!!! #siri #iphone #anappforthat #philosopy #meaning of life
Natives and transplants alike, New Yorkers are prepared to deal with the eventuality of not leaving our apartments. Not just in the cold, either. We're ready to get down every weekend or so, but we're also coming to the realization that NYC can be a painfully lonely city depending on what walk of life you're in.
Sometimes going at it all night in the city is exactly what you need, but more often than not, we're realizing that our time to ourselves is just as vital. We're not afraid to be alone, and that's much less daunting when you know that nearly everything you need can be delivered to your apartment.
That might seem like a petty parallel to draw, but if you've ever felt alone in the city, and needed time to yourself to recognize that loneliness and being alone are two drastically different things, then you already know how comforting it is to know that life has gotten easier to manage.
Whereas coping mechanisms traditionally took the form of party-of-one barstool shots, and one night stands at last call, we are now able to manage these emotional ails easier, alone if needed.
We're not not going out because we're depressed. We're recognizing the dangers of depression and not pretending like we still have a "drinking solution."
jeremiah.hosea The Economic Agenda is Real, better have a plan. #gentrification #brooklynantigentrificationnetwork
We're losing every ounce of originality in NYC. Sure, Pacha closing is just a small drop in the bucket (and a Hell's Kitchen club, no less), but when will people trying to open garbage chain, box-store entertainment recognize that nobody wants that anymore?
Haven't they realized that we're pretty easily entertained as long as it's actually entertaining?
Silent disco? Golden. We're there. Absurd EDM party in an undisclosed warehouse? Skooo! We're there (the higher potential for tetanus the better). Fire dancers, brown bagged liquor and literally anything else at a weird bonfire out in Brooklyn? Pleasure doing business with you.
Again, we're tired of feeling like we've wasted our time. We're tired of standing in long lines and spending way too much money for something that gives us such little in return. We're deeply in touch with everything going on in NYC, and we're not down with its perpetually revised personality.
If staying awake in the city that never sleeps means regretting everything we did (not on a moral level, but on the basis of sheer entertainment value), then goodnight. We're done.[Feature Image Courtesy NY on Air]