It's all better now, depending on your definition of "better." Times Square is an extension of Disneyland, and the subways, despite some recent financial trouble, are vastly safer and cleaner. But don;'t kid yourself: human beings, including New Yorkers, are still sinners. And a lot of our sins are just gross and stupid.
Today's local news brings two good examples:
#1: A nurse's assistant at Lutheran Medical Center, in Brooklyn, claims that she was repeatedly smacked on the buttocks by colleagues and supervisors, and that when she complained, they told her to wear looser scrubs and lab coat. (Instead of, say, volunteering to keep their hands to themselves). Seriously, people? In the 21st century? What kind of idiots are you?
She's suing for $6 million, enough to build her own 1970s cyborg. The only thing that makes us doubt the outcome of the case is the fact that she is apparently being represented by Superman's distorted twin, attorney Laurie Bizzarro. (Who is probably sick of that stupid joke by now, huh? We apologize.) (And a tip o' the biretta to Fr. W.E.B., for pointing this one out).
#2: A fellow named Aaron Olivieri has been arrested on the allegation that he used his cellphone camera to take upskirt pictures of a woman on the subway stairs. The victim used her own phone to take his picture, which she gave to the police. If in fact he is guilty, Mr. Olivieri is a dope and a sleazebag. But either way, we think we may have a teensy-weensy crush on his attorney, Rigodis Appling.
So, look, America: the boom years didn't soften us up completely. New York still has it all -- sexual harassment, unsafe mass transit, alluring lawyers (just like on TV!) and lecherous clergymen (just like on TV!). Oh, and until the term limits kick in, our mayor is still way richer than yours. Make your vacation plans now.