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  • Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

    I might be moving to one of those cities and would love to talk to someone from there about them.

  • #2
    Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

    *raises hand* I live in Chicago and have for my entire life thus far.

    I'll answer any questions you may have to the best of my knowledge. Just thought I'd give you the bad side of the coin first...

    Things to expect (mostly negative):

    1. CTA (our sad excuse for mass transit) is "always late, never early".
    ----- Every year they scream for more money and after they get it, service gets shrinked and fares go up.

    2. Firearms...well they're kinda illegal still. Is the law clear on what you can't or can have? No, I still haven't found any explicit municipal laws on the subject.

    3. Deep dish pizza. New York doesn't have squat on us. We're still the deep dish king.

    4. Weather. We have blizzards! Hell, we just had one (over 20" of snow in one day). Make sure you pack winter clothes that is warm because you might have to endure a bad winter with negative temps in the teens or worse.
    ----- Windy, very windy during the autumn. If you run or bike, I'd probably get a windbreaker and hoodie as it gets cold out on the lakefront.
    ----- Rain. Bring an umbrella. We get quite a bit of it during the spring time.
    ----- Heat. Yes, we also can get scorching summers. I'll leave you to figure out the cooling situation.

    5. Whatever you do, DO NOT move to "Englewood". It may look "diverse" online, but it's basically the heart of the ghetto.

    6. Internet service. Generally, it sucks. Depending on where in the city you'll be living, you either only have AT&T or Comcast or you might have the oh-so-spectacular RCN. If you get to choose RCN, go RCN. Customer service and actual service is probably the best you'll find. However, if you have to use AT&T or Comcast, just make you're getting what you pay for.

    7. Emergency services.
    ----- Ambulances: typically takes anywhere from 5 to 45 mins. If you're in dire need of medical attention, my advice is to rush yourself (or have someone take you) to a private hospital's emergency room (like Rush). Mercy and most of the public ones are pretty dispicable in terms of service and making sure you're still alive (you'll be in line for a while on a busy day).
    ----- Firefighters: great! Probably the best first responders we have. Typically no more than 15 mins before they get to you. They actually dispatch the closest truck!
    ----- Police: forget it. Unless you've been just shot or being robbed at gun point, don't expect them to get there for at least 20 mins to 2 hours.

    8. Tax. Right now, officially last I knew it's at 10.75% (sales). It could go back up to 11%+.

    9. If you get a delivery from FedEx, be warned, they do crazy crap like throw your package of sensitive electronics over your backyard or toss it into the back alley by your back door. Go UPS or USPS if you can.

    10. If you drive, don't bother within the city. During rush hour times, you'll be just as slow as the CTA buses. Plus parking is a real nightmare to find especially on the weekends. Did I mention gas?
    |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
    TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
    Former 9th & 13th

    Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
    Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





    SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

    TG Primer and Rules

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

      All right, here are some great things:

      1. Trees. Some cities you won't see many trees, Chicago has a slew of them just about everywhere. Recently Chicago Parks have actually gone and planted more in the various neighborhood parks so there's more shade in the summer time and plenty more fresh air.

      2. Bike friendly. The city has really improved over the years to becoming more bike friendly. Most of the roads leading downtown now have a dedicated bicycle lane. Unfortunately, this still needs work as often times my main obstacle are the clueless drivers who just flip open their doors as you approach. More than once, I've nearly killed myself swerving into passing traffic.

      3. Food and stores. For the most part, both of these intermingle downtown pretty well. Namely, if you are shopping, there's almost always a restaurant within a block of where you are.
      ----- Shopping-wise, the "magnificent mile" (Michigan Ave.) is probably the place to go for non-tech shopping (mostly clothing stores). They're all pretty much along a few miles starting at the river and north through Chicago Ave. (a load of independent stores are at the Water Tower Place).
      ----- Tech shopping-wise, you're somewhat limited. Although the mag mile features several staple stores such as Office Max and Office Depot, neither is really a tech geek's dream. For that, you need to travel over to Elston St. and visit the newly opened Tiger Direct store, Staples next door, and Micro Center across and down a block.
      ----------- Home Depot is also next to Tiger Direct (a block over on the same side), so it's great if you need to pick up some hardware and materials to build something for your studio space. :)
      ----- Food-wise, you have a slew to choose from. From Bennigan's to Tokyo Lunch Box & Catering, to fine dining like the Everest. Scattered in between and usually off of the mag mile are lots of cheap eats (like McDs, Vienna Hot Dogs and Burgers, etc).

      Chicago's pretty segragated (either by choice or by circumstance). Food-wise, this makes it a helluva lot easier since you have clusters of restaurants in such areas like: Koreatown, Chinatown, Near North Side's cluster of steak houses, Japantown, Pilsen (great Mexican and Hispanic food), etc.

      4. Park Concerts and Festivals.
      ----- Blues Festival (June 10-12, 2011): http://www.explorechicago.org/city/e..._festival.html It's free and probably the largest blues fest of it's kind.
      ----- Lollapalooza (August 5-7, 2011): http://www.lollapalooza.com/ This particular event has garnered huge crowds from all over the world since it's inception a few years back. Unfortunately, it's now fairly pricey (typically $80+ a ticket - no food or drinks included).
      ----- Marathons. We have several over the summer. Bank of America sponsored one is probably the big one that comes to mind. Signups usually begin around now and most offer some form of training for not-so-seasoned runners and walkers.
      ----- Concerts in the Parks. This is a series of free smaller concerts/events/gatherings hosted at various city parks over the entire summer. Started a few years ago, and I've been to a few. General a great time to hang out with friends, meet new people, explore the city a bit (and wonder why CTA takes so long), and generally most are free admission. The last one I attended was with a group friends and it was a movie night on top of a hill (Pee Wee Herman).

      5. Various Events.
      ----- LAN Parties! Although this scene has pretty much died off over the years, there are still some good LAN parties hosted around and within Chicago. Often times, it's just friends and friends of friends gathering together. Get to know your neighbors, who knows, a few of them might play the same games you do!

      To make things rather interesting, there's still one PC LAN gaming center within the city: Ignite Network Gaming Center. I've only been there with my brother a few times, but for the most party up-to-date selection of games and pretty good hardware to boot. Has a good selection of energy drinks like Bawls on hand for purchase (single or packs). They also host at least one semi-largish LAN fest over the summer.

      ----- Toys for Tots. Later in the year (before Christmas) aimed at providing needy children and those from low-income families toys and presents for the Christmas holiday.
      |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
      TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
      Former 9th & 13th

      Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
      Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





      SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

      TG Primer and Rules

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

        I don't live there but I commute there everyday so I can give somewhat of an opinion on NYC. If you can't afford Manhattan, then take Chicago. Not that the other boroughs aren't nice, but you won't get the romanticized NYC experience you see on TV and movies unless you live in Manhattan. It's just not the same visiting as it is when you live there. I lived in the Bronx for 8 months before moving upstate, I think I went to Manhattan three times. Although it's "close by" it may as well be worlds apart.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

          Wow thanks for the great write up Acreo. That was definitely helpful...thank you soooo much. I am sending you a PM as a follow up.

          Harlequin. Ya see I have only been in Manhattan so I am really wondering what the other areas are like. If I took the job there I would be working in manhattan but might live somewhere else just due to the price of housing. I am sending you a PM too.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

            If you can afford it, find a place in Lincoln Park neighborhood in Chicago. Safe, pretty picturesque throughout the year (wish I had taken a picture during my LAN fest up there last week), and just a short hop away by train or bus from just about everything you'd want (food, activities (lots), and shopping). Typically you're going to be looking at anywhere from $600 and upwards for a one bedroom studio/apartment. Most rent out a floor in a house and share it with housemates and split the costs of living and expenses.

            (Partly why Lincoln Park is so safe is because mostly upper middle class to wealthy live there. Everyone else are mostly students.)
            |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
            TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
            Former 9th & 13th

            Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
            Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





            SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

            TG Primer and Rules

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

              I PM'd you this, but I'll post it here for all to see.

              http://newyorkcity.sublet.com/

              This is a great website and it's what I used to find a place when I moved to NYC. Craig's List is cool too, but this site has an interactive map that lets you narrow results by neighborhood.

              Edit: There's a Chicago page too- http://www.sublet.com/city_rentals/chicago_rentals.asp

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

                There's actually quite a few sites out there that'll help you find a place Talon. The one that I've heard a lot about from friends here who've used them is: http://www.chicagoapartmentfinders.com/ Plus they have storefront locations in the city. It's free according to a friend and they actually assign someone to help you look if you walk into one of the stores (needs to sign a contract). They drive you around to whatever apartment you want to see.
                |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
                TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
                Former 9th & 13th

                Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
                Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





                SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

                TG Primer and Rules

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

                  Just bookmarked this thread under "In case I go to Northwestern." ;)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

                    A correction to my first post:

                    RCN - Customer service is actually the worst of the three apparently according to several close friends who use their services and some online opinion surveys. While CS isn't so great, service apparently is awesome. No caps and very speedy fiber if you can afford it.
                    |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
                    TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
                    Former 9th & 13th

                    Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
                    Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





                    SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

                    TG Primer and Rules

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

                      Acreo Aeneas, sweet info! Ill be in Chicago for 3 days next week (including St Patty's!!!)

                      Any recommendations for places to stay or stuff to do / restaurants to go eat at??? Already you provided tons of good info man, Chicago sounds prety awesome I must say!

                      I'll be driving in from Detroit.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

                        Visit Dispo > Give him crap for not playing enough any more > Get drunk > Profit.

                        I always find it weird that the world does so much for St. Paddy's, yet here we actually do very little, our "celebrations" are crap.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

                          haha really Jeepo what do you guys do??? I hear in Chicago its a pretty huge day.... I know Montreal has a big party here in Canada, and even in my small city the bars are completely full and its treated almost like a full holiday (even though everyone has to go to work hungover the next day lol)

                          visiting Dispo... haha if the old fart will come out to the bars for a drink Id be honored to buy him a couple rounds :D

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

                            I live in manhattan and it's pretty awesome. Very liberal here and one of a kind. You can see pretty much anything you want. It's the art capital and tons of cultural experiences. The people range across the board but most are pretty down to earth.

                            I will say it's not for the faint of heart. It's brisk and bold, you'll need a tough skin to survive here.


                            - -

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Anyone live in Chicago or New York city?

                              Originally posted by fuzzhead View Post
                              Acreo Aeneas, sweet info! Ill be in Chicago for 3 days next week (including St Patty's!!!)

                              Any recommendations for places to stay or stuff to do / restaurants to go eat at??? Already you provided tons of good info man, Chicago sounds pretty awesome I must say!

                              I'll be driving in from Detroit.
                              Whatever you do, find a good unmetered parking spot near whatever friend's place you're staying at and leave your car there. Otherwise, you'll hate trying to find parking space only to forget to refill the "meter" (actually their printout tickets now) and end up with a hefty parking ticket.

                              Restaurants...oh boy. How much you looking to spend? *evil eye twinkle*

                              The one place you need to try if you have the $$$ for it: http://www.everestrestaurant.com/

                              Stuff to do (if you've never done these):

                              1. Go up on the Sears Tower, *ahem* I mean the Willis Tower (very stupid backstory behind the name change), to the Skydeck. Look out over Chicago. Have some pictures taken of you standing virtually over nothing but thin air (illusion because of the new built-out windows).

                              2. Visit Millenium Park and stare at the big shiny bean or the big face TV (if it's on). (Both of which are a HUGE waste of our taxpayer dollars, especially the bean. But now you guys can join us in laughing hysterically at it.)

                              3. Take a walk around sunset along the lakefront.

                              4. Go to the various museums: Museum of Science and Technology, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art, etc (see this Google search: http://www.google.com/search?q=chica...ient=firefox-a)

                              5. Food...gosh there is so much. Take a look at this public television show: Check Please! Probably the best show if you wanna know what's good to eat in Chicago.

                              6. While you're at it, take a stroll up (or down) the Magnificent Mile (Michigan Avenue, roughly between Grand Ave. and E. Oak St.).

                              7. Take a ride on the L! Yeah, you'll probably be doing this anyways, but it'll give you a good experience as to how friggin' slow the trains take to go once around the loop (and yes even slower on days like St. Patty's Day). My suggestion: take the Brown Line from Washington/Wells stop and get off at Clark/Lake St. stop. That way you actually go once around the loop without ending up in an area you're not familiar with.

                              Here's a pretty 'L' map for you to stare at: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...cago_L_Map.svg
                              |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
                              TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
                              Former 9th & 13th

                              Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
                              Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





                              SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

                              TG Primer and Rules

                              Comment

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