Our Favorite New York Facts That Aren’t Facts (And One That Is)
As we know, New York is a unique place filled with more than a few very unique individuals. That's one reason that sometimes it's easy for people to say things about our beloved state and people from other parts of the country will believe it even if it isn't true. And, yes, there are a few times the weird stuff is actually true. Here are some of our favorites.
1. Alligators live in the New York City sewer system. FALSE. Snopes outs this fake lizard tale (Pun Alert!)
It's long been rumored there are thriving colonies of alligators lurking in New York City's sewer system. Supposedly, baby alligators brought back as pets from Florida end up being dumped into the sewer system when they outgrow their young and innocent stage. From such an inglorious beginning, these discarded gators grow to immense size and daily terrorize all those foolish enough to risk a visit to the bowels of the city.
We've all heard it. And it ain't true.
2. Two men were arrested for "manspreading" on a New York subway. FALSE. First of all, "manspreading" is a term for guys that sit on the subway with their legs spread apart. Allegedly, two dudes were arrested for doing this and taking up too much space. Again, here's what Snopes had to say.
On 28 May 2015, the New York City-centric blog Gothamist published an article titled “Cops Arrest Subway Riders For ‘Manspreading.'” Referencing a document sourced from a police reform group, it reported that at least two male subway riders were arrested for “manspreading.”
If the term sounds unfamiliar to you, “manspreading” is a neologism describing a nuisance wherein male passengers of public transport occupy space outside their seats.
Missing from all claims about the manspreading arrests were the specific criminal codes under which the men were purportedly charged, the date of the infractions in question (or whether “recently” was in the last week, month or year), the names of the men charged, their ages, where the incident may have occurred, or any other information attesting to the fact two men were arrested in New York City at any point in history for quality of life crimes related to manspreading.
3. In 2006, a sneaker interrupted Albany's eternal flame. TRUE. Moral of this story is to keep your Air Jordan's on your feet.