Friday, June 15, 2012

Nine years, 50 weeks

I’ve been told you’re not a true New Yorker until you’ve lived in the city for 10 years. Well, I have been in New York for two weeks now, which means I am about nine years, 50 weeks away from being a New Yorker. This, of course, means I am in no shape to give anyone advice about living in the city as one. But what I have learned in these past two weeks is a few things about living in the city as someone who is distinctly not from New York.

Stand out. I grew up in Lincoln, Neb. It’s a state where cows outnumber people four to one. So naturally the first thing I noticed about New York is the amount of people. There are people everywhere. It’s easy to get lost in a city like this (figuratively and literally). To get noticed you have to find something that makes you different. When I first met my fellow ASME interns, it was amazing how remarkable they all were. They are some of the most talented young journalists I have ever met. It’s pretty clear that these people will have no problem standing out in a big crowd.

Work hard. I’m interning at Sports Illustrated, and everyone in the office is extremely well accomplished. They have already worked at some of the best newspapers, magazines and online-publications around the world. They come from top-rated Universities. Their bylines are synonymous with excellence. They are at SI because they worked their way to get there. This is equal parts intimidating and inspiring. But I can already tell some of the most important lessons I will learn at SI this summer is to develop a tough work ethic and always go the extra mile—it can only bring you closer to your goal.

Embrace the madness. Monotony is a word that I have already eradicated from my vocabulary. Every second it’s something new and exciting. Sure, it’s also busy and chaotic—but if you ask most people, they wouldn’t have it any other way. This city’s not for everyone. But if you think it’s for you, learn to love every ounce of insanity.

Try as much as possible. It amazes me how passionate New Yorkers are about, well, being New Yorkers. They love their city. In these short two weeks, I can see why. Everything is here: great food, music, shows, bars, scenery, people watching, shops—the list continues. Us interns have not wasted a single second trying every bit of it.

Alexandra Engler // Sports Illustrated

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