When it comes to comparing Philadelphia with New York, Philadelphia often gets the short end of the stick. However, when it comes to the important things in life, Philadelphia does more than holds it own when pitted up to the self-proclaimed “Capital of the Free World.” We are, after all, the nation’s first capital.
Historical Landmarks: Liberty Bell vs. Statue of Liberty
Between the two cities, there are no shortages of famous landmarks. There are two that come to mind almost instantly.
New York has the Statue of Liberty. First dedicated by France to symbolize the friendship forged during the Revolutionary War, Lady Liberty still proudly stands in New York Harbor. Standing a whopping 305 ft. tall, this jolly green giant is visited by over 3 million people per year. It loses points for its geographical location, which is technically New Jersey (much like their football teams).
The Liberty Bell is a symbol of freedom in this country. Located in the heart of Center City, it is the heart of Philadelphia. One could also claim it to be the Heart of Independence. Its most famous ringing came on July 8th, 1776 as a signal to Philadelphians and Americans that independence had been declared. Weighing in at a hefty 2,055 lbs. this heavy-weight is also visited by over 3 million persons per year. It gains points for seniority in American history. New York loses a few more points for being a colony full of loyalists who until the very last moment succumbed to the pressure of the other colonies.
Food: Cheesesteaks vs. Pizza
You can find Philadelphia’s signature dish in many places across the country, but seldom is this delicatesy good outside of the tri-state area (PA, NJ, Northern DE). Cheese Wiz, wit or witout juicy beef grilled to heavenly perfection, a true Philadelphian knows, it’s the roll that makes the sandwich. (My personal preference is Amoroso’s roll with provolone cheese) Perhaps it’s the limited accessibility to good bread that limits other spots across the U.S. from producing a cheesesteak worthy of a Philadelphian tongue.
Everyone knows that New York is known for their Manhattan or Neapolitan style pizza. Sure, it’s good, I cannot lie, however, is it better than say Chicago-style deep-dish? Are the pizzas you find in New York leaps and bounds better than that of what you find at your favorite Ma and Pop pizza joint in your neighborhood? Better maybe, but only slightly. Add in the accessibility of good pizza across the nation and New York-Style Pizza just doesn’t stand out from the pack like a good cheesesteak does.
Traffic: Cross- Bronx vs. The Schuylkill
I have been stuck in traffic numerous times on both roadways. Each time I subject myself to the punishment doled out by either gauntlet, I feel as if I lose two years off my life. It doesn’t matter if it’s midnight, on Christmas, in a blizzard, the day after nuclear annihilation, you are sure to find a jam up, no matter which highway you find yourself on. Both Philadelphians and New Yorkers can lament when struggling to deal with these two behemoths.
Fans: Yankees vs. Phillies
In Philadelphia, if you’re a fan, you are a PHAN. Your reputation proceeds you. You are feared by the nation yet revered by your brethren. Forget Santa, you have thrown snowballs at Cowboys head-coach Jimmy Johnson and ruffled his finely coiffed hairdo. You have ruined the careers of both Matt Garza and Eva, er Evan Longoria because you refused to let them get comfortable on the biggest stage of their careers. You are not passive about your sports teams, you are passionate. Whether or not you have a good day depends on how well your team performed the night before. Baseball for you is not an institution, it’s life. To root for a winner is easy, but to root for a team that has over ten-thousand losses takes a special person – a loyal person. You are that person.
To be a Yankees fan is trying. Geez, your team hasn’t won since the turn of the century(2000). Fuhgedaboutit, Yankee fans don’t hold a candle to a Phillies fan because you don’t have the experience of pain and loss of Joe Carter and 1964. I won’t be the one to call you front-runners because you really have no other choice (well you could be a Mets fan… I know, I’m laughing too). You may well be passionate, but you have no clue as to what devotion is because you never had to suffer through bad, and I mean really bad times. (Except losing that Boston series, yeah, that was pretty rough.)
So there you have it, Philadelphia is clearly better than New York both inside and outside the baseball stadium.