Jerry Seinfeld left his billionaire lair to pen a cheeky op-ed for the New York Times in response to another writer’s opinion piece claiming New York City is washed beyond repair. The piece was spicy in true NYC fashion, and so was Twitter when his name joined a controversial, yet coincidental topic on the “Trending Topics” list.
It started from a whiny op-ed written by James Altucher, star of his namesake podcast and co-founder of the Standup NY comedy club, who says “NYC is dead forever. Here’s why.”
The piece reads like an aggrieved city dweller whose privileged lifestyle is permanently destroyed and is wanting an audience to rally behind his sentiments.
To summarize, The Big Apple is no longer a place worth living in because business opportunities, culture, and food — the pillars of what he says creates the city’s prestigious value — are all destroyed beyond return due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Altucher argued that as office buildings sit at ninety percent empty, the workforce eagerly traded their corner offices for virtual meetings over Zoom and blue jeans. The freedom of doing business remotely has caused a mass exodus out of the city. There’s a bit of truth there.
Movers are so booked and busy with the influx of business that they have to turn down customers, and the ones they do take are high-tailing it at least 20-miles out towards suburbs and into other states. NYC Renters are seeing a glorious dip in rents while listings out of the city are getting hit with a 50% hike due to demand. Altucher complained about landing his plush rental in sunny South Florida, so there’s that.
Anyway, Seinfeld wasn’t hearing it, and slammed back with his own op-ed titled “So You Think New York Is ‘Dead’ (It’s not.)”
“He says he knows people who have left New York for Maine, Vermont, Tennessee, Indiana. I have been to all of these places many, many, many times over many decades. And with all due respect and affection, Are .. You .. Kidding .. Me?!
He says Everyone’s gone for good. How the hell do you know that? You moved to Miami. Yes, I also have a place out on Long Island. But I will never abandon New York City. Ever.”
Altucher showed just how out-of-touch he was with life when he complained about remote living driving up Internet bandwidth. He called it “AB: After Bandwith” to denote the era of “remote learning, remote meetings, remote offices, remote performances, remote everything.”
Seinfeld called his take “stupid” and reassured him that no one will enjoy remote living in the long-term.
“Guess what: Everyone hates to do this. Everyone. Hates. You know why? There’s no energy. Energy, attitude and personality cannot be “remoted” through even the best fiber optic lines. That’s the whole reason many of us moved to New York in the first place.”
It’s a wonder why Jerry Seinfeld decided to entertain this “putz” but his energy epitomizes a true New Yorker.
“You say New York will not bounce back this time. You will not bounce back. In your enervated, pastel-filled new life in Florida. I hope you have a long, healthy run down there. I can’t think of a more fitting retribution for your fine article.”
This stupid virus will give up eventually. The same way you have.”
As usual, social media is relentless. Seinfeld’s piece started trending on Twitter and, coincidentally, so did “She’s 15,” which is not related to the comedian’s alleged past relationship with a 17-year-old when he was 38. Google that one. “She’s 15” refers to the ongoing abuse allegations claimed by the daughter of recently-resigned Counselor to the President of the United States, KellyAnne Conway.