Locals of USA

Locals of New York City: Shira Galler

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We met Shira after googling “free coworking spaces in new york city” and going to about page five, where we found a free space called Wix Lounge in Chelsea. We used the space partly because they offered free espresso drinks, partly because of the free workspace, and partly because of the free clothing inspiration Shira would bring daily. The day she wore her throwback 90s vintage jean overalls and clear 1950s cat-eye glasses, was the day I knew had to befriend her. She reminded me of that one VJ named Kennedy from MTV who I thought was one quirky son of a gun.

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Shira and I met up in Vbar on Sullivan Street (her recommendation), which turned out to be a new favorite for me because of their constant stream of vulgar French hip hop music. The bar seemed like the perfect place to cozy up and read a book over a glass of red wine in the corner – or at least that’s what one blonde woman was doing. Shira and I ordered a beer and some tea and got to talkin’.

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How did you end up in New York City?

After college I traveled around Northern India for a bit and then when I got back to the States, I decided to move to NYC. I eventually got a job at wix.com where I became interested in video production. Also, both of my sisters live here.

It’s 5pm on Friday and you just got out of work, what do you do? How do you spend your evening?

Well, first I’d have a beer at work…maybe two…hehe. Then I’d walk home or meet up with my boyfriend. I always walk home from Chelsea on Friday evenings – great way to relax after a long week. Then I usually chill out at home, relax, read, or listen to music. At night, I like to treat myself to a nice dinner. So that means probably going to one of our favorite restaurants in the East Village, either Cafe Mogador or Cafe Orlin. Mmm so good. Then either meet up with friends, go out dancing, or chill at someone’s apartment.

Where do you get your drank and your two-step on?

the-beauty-bar

What do you consider the #1 Unwritten Rule of NYC?

 Learn to master the art of weaving in and out of crowds!

What do you say to people who think you have to be rich to live in New York?

You are crazy! You don’t have to be rich in NY (being rich would probably be easier…but who wants the easy way out?). Yeah, things are expensive here, but you just need to figure out how to save…(live with a roommate!)

You’re dead broke, and want to have a good time in the city. What can you recommend?

governors-island

Everyone should check out The Skint – tells you everything that’s going on in NY, either free or very cheap. In the summer there are tons of free concerts and festivals. You can go to Governors Island for the day – ferry tickets are only $2. Have a cute picnic in Prospect Park and catch a free concert in the evening. I love going to the MET, where you can give a “recommended” donation – usually I just give $1. You can rent cheap bikes on the West Side Highway and ride for hours. You can walk along any of the bridges and enjoy the Brooklyn environment. It’s pretty easy to find something cheap to do.

What has been your most unusual New York experience?

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Hmm.. this is a tough one. I think I’m so numb to the craziness at this point. It’s all so normal now – the hustle and bustle, the loudness, the crazy cab drivers, the intensity of the people, the nonstop life. I will say that one morning, I was walking near Washington Square Park and these two older, drunk bums screamed out to me, “Nice glasses, FOUR EYES!” I couldn’t help but laugh, it was hysterical.


If you’re a cool local of your city, send an email to holler@damonandjo.com with a link to your Instagram and 140 characters about why you should be featured in our “Locals of” series!

In our “Locals of” series, we will be highlighting locals of each city we travel to. Go figure. These aren’t just randos walking down the street; they’re people we have personally connected with and vouch for in terms of knowing how to do their city right. They’ve got some juicy deets that might just change the way you see their cities and we want to share them with you.

Check out more of Shira (@shiragaller) at her website, www.shiragaller.com!

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