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Photo by Normal Bob

I know there's going to be many of you seeing this picture and saying, "What? What's so AMAZING about them?" But here in the city these sorts of folks stand out like you wouldn't believe!

I mean, the dad's makin' it so obvious, and the mother kickin' back in her pants, and then those two lost sons, Christ! It's like none of them know how to act and someone's forcing them all to be together!
Is it just me? Tell me it's not just me.

Photo by Normal Bob
Okay, maybe I'm not making myself clear. Lemme think how to do this. Let's just say that when we see them we all go: "Oh yeah, that's why you don't get married and move to the suburbs. I almost forgot. Thanks for the reminder."

Photo by Noah Rider

Maybe I'm just fascinated because I was once one of them? Is that it? I guess it makes it easier to understand why a majority of the population laughs out loud at sitcoms, voted for Bush, and thinks they get to go to heaven for believing the right story. I mean, who wears sunglasses like that? They actually listened to ads on TV!!! They believed 'em! So futuristic! They're all Terminators! And I bet they all enjoy the same music too! Jesus Christ, I love gawking at midwestern, suburban, white folks.

Photo by Normal Bob

Okay fine, you're married and you've basically given up the rest of your life to dressing up in whatever fucking whim your wife happens to be on at the moment. But Jesus fucking Christ, does she gotta rub your nose in it by chastising you in public like you're her little bitch while you're in the matching flag shirts and fanny packs?

Shoot yourself now fella. It's over.

Photo by Normal Bob

There are times in New York City when it can be virtually impossible to tell a tourist from a local. There are plenty of out-of-towners who've got great style, subtle behaviors and a classy, dignified way of carrying themselves which allows them blend in to most low key city neighborhoods.

Then other times they look exactly like tourists.

Photo by Normal Bob

Right around this time of the year a whole lotta Euro-trash shows up, and they've got their own style that maybe isn't as obvious the first coupla times ya see it.

But then you start to notice the sort of tweaked yuppy-tennis-pro thing and from then on it'll grab your eye like a rusty fishhook.

Photo by Normal Bob

I believe it's only after you've lived in NYC a while that the tourists really stand out and you can dissect them down to the fraction; Down to the emasculated emo D-student and his dickhead older brother that calls him "faggot" and bitchslaps the self-esteem out of him at the dinner table in front of their despondent parents who've had a Friday night let's-try-to-save-our-sexlife "Date Night" scheduled for the last two and a half years that only ever actually happens when neither of them is sober enough to focus on anything naked about themselves.

You can see it written on their foreheads after about 3 years here.

Photo by Normal Bob
The Grizwalds, because, well shit – everyone hates them.

Photo by Normal Bob

"No! The voice mocking us came from over there I tell you! I'm sure of it! I heard it so clearly!"

"No, You're wrong! It came from that direction! The yelling about mom's hat and dress came from that direction! I'd bet my life on it!"

"You're surely sure? How can you be so sure? The voices mocking us are coming from many directions! From over there and over there and..."

"Yes, and over there! I assure you, most of the mocking laughter and comments about mom's dress are from that general area there! Northeast."

"Okay, I have to agree with Rodney at this point. The comments about my dress and our family are mostly coming from that direction."

"Yes. Rodney's correct. Now we all agree. It's mostly coming from over there. Mostly."

Photo by Normal Bob
And this is pretty much the height of cleverness you've got to work with once you get to this point. And believe me, these 2 pics will make it to the photo album and every time someone turns to that page they'll get the story of the crazy time they had in New York City.

Photo by Normal Bob

See, here in the city families don't hang out together. This is the place where people come to get away from their families! And the families that're already here see enough of each other. The last thing they want to do is go shopping, or walk to the park, or whatever it is families are supposed to do together outdoors.

So when you're a whole family here hanging out makin' like you're just a group of friends with tremendous age gaps, everyone else knows you're Griswalds.

Photo by Normal Bob

Don't let people tell you that things are always better "over there." The Euro-trash are just as bad, if not worse, than some of the dippiest Midwestern suburbanites.

But ya gotta give the kid a break. All he had to work with is what those two people had in their reproductive organs. And when you breed a donkey and a horse, you get a mule. Thankfully the mule can't reproduce.

Photo by Normal Bob

If you're a tourist visiting New York City you can't be too careful when protecting yourself from the pick-pockets, muggers & con artists. The first way to safeguard yourself from these perpetrators is to avoid looking like a mark, and to blend in with the locals. And what you'll notice about New Yorkers is they wear their backpacks on the front. This way everything you're carrying is always in your view. It's just common sense. I'd like to see a burglar try to steal a camera out of this "backpack!"

Streetwise New Yorkers are also known to keep their savings in cash under their hat, pocket change up their ass, and believe that Jesus Christ is protecting them from everything else.

Photo by Normal Bob

I know what you're sayin'. You're sayin, "Bob, I was really enjoying your Amazing Strangers up until I got to this part! These are pictures of me, and my family, and you're takin' the piss out 'em, and I'm not sure I know what to think anymore!"

Photo by Normal Bob
Rusty, Ellen, Audrey, & Clark.
Now you have met the Griswalds.

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Insults written strangely are describing strangers I have to see every single day and I don't want them to be sure what it means either.

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