How many steps?

posted by Jason Kottke Feb 11, 2004

Rosecrans illustrates the importance of location for some NYC dwellers (you know who you are) by the number of steps he has to take to reach various destinations, entertainments, services, and delectables from his desk:

Kitchen: 6
Toilet: 11
Bar: 61
Niman Ranch cheeseburger: 110
Coffee shop: 141
Cheese shop: 153
Nearest subway platform: 305
Manhattan (Union Square): 433
Gym: 561
Drycleaner (good): 961

For some New Yorkers, many of the things on his list are even closer than that: 8 steps to the phone and 9 to the door after the delivery guy rings the buzzer. With cabs and Towncars, both the well-heeled and those not so fond of hoofing it are able to reach any destination in the five boroughs and beyond in less than 100 steps. In these cases, it's not so much about steps as dollars.

As I walked past Bryant Park yesterday at lunch, I wondered how Anna Wintour, editor in chief of Vogue, gets from her office in 4 Times Square to Bryant Park for the Fashion Week festivities. It's only a block, less than a 2 minute walk, but she also has the option of taking one of the sleek black cars parked at the rear of the building on 43rd Street. Factoring in the stop lights, one-way streets, and Midtown traffic, the drive must take 5-10 minutes. My best guess is that Anna is not a steps kinda gal and opts for the Towncar.