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How Not To Get Mugged In NYC

How Not To Get Mugged In NYC published on 6 Comments on How Not To Get Mugged In NYC


You would think staying safe in NYC would just take a bit of common sense, but apparently it’s not all that obvious to everyone. Now that it’s still dark when I walk to the gym in the morning, I’m more aware of people just asking to be mugged. And no, they ain’t all Mid Western hipsters either (They are not out that early).

Of course this calls for a list.

1. TAKE OFF THE F*CKIN HEADPHONES! WTF? Do I even have to explain why? Also, may I go off topic a little? I don’t care if it’s broad daylight and there are a thousand people on the street. I’ve seen so many people nearly get hit by cars because they aren’t paying attention. I don’t even wear headphones on the subway. I like to be part of the world I live in.

2. The Friggin iPhones and Blackberries. Walking down the street texting. That’s a good way to get your phone stolen. It’s also a good way to get your ass kicked and don’t be surprised if I’m the one doing it.

3. Ladies: Mind your purses! The best bag is something that closes completely and can be slung over your neck and shoulder diagonally. Never carry it on your back and always hang on to it. Oh, and do you know how many times I’ve seen women leave their purses in their shopping carts at the supermarket while picking vegetable? Are you f*ckin insane? You deserve to be ripped off!

4. Guys. The wallets and phones. Back pockets are a no-no. Back packs? No good. Listen, I’ve been guilty of carrying my phone in my back pocket, but only when I’m going around the corner. Never in a busy area.

5. Have your keys ready. It’s late at night. You’re getting off the train and there is (seemingly) no one else around. You’re not wearing headphones, right??? Good. Have your keys in hand ready to put in the door. People get mugged right in front of their own homes while fumbling for keys. I like to carry mine between my fingers so I can jab someone in the eye if need be. Won’t do anything against a gun, but it makes me feel safer.

6. Pay attention. You have to have eyes in the back of your head. Seriously, listen for footsteps and look for shadows. Walk on the bright side of the street or even in the middle if you have to. Of course I’m talking about you being the only one on the street at 4am, not lunchtime in midtown.

7. Trains and buses. Back in the old days when I actually DID stay out until 4am and the city was rough, I had to take the train back to Coney Island. It was second to last stop and by the time I got home, there was usually me and one other drunk in the car. One night, after a guy came over and started jerking off in my face, I decided I had had enough. After that incident, I always got off at Kings Highway where the train was still crowded and took the bus to Coney. It let me off in front of my building and the bus driver was there to protect me. These days I just take a cab home if I’m out late. It’s more out of convenience than safety. Point is: Mass transit is safer than walking and if you’re the only one on a train, at least stay in the conductor’s car.

8. They smell fear. I dunno. I just made that up. I try to look tough, which is pretty funny since I’m 4’11”. Maybe it works. Never been mugged. (Knock wood!!)

Added bonus for your car…

Hel-lo! Do not leave anything of value in there! Yeah, people do that, believe it or not.


All great advice! Seemingly obvious stuff, but I have seen many people doing them. The one I find puzzling is people traveling back home late at night that for some odd reason decide to be cheap and not take a cab home, at least from part of the way. I guess it’s the alcohol and the accompanying overconfidence that causes the very same people to drive themselves home while still drunk!

Amen and I second all of the points above. I, too, like to have my keys ready for stabbing and eye-jabbing when late at night and carry my bag diagonally so if it gets pulled, they gotta pull ME along with it.

Definitely need to look tough…at least look “not soft or in pain”. I have a guy friend whose hip and legs cramp and lock up with he’s tired. He screws up his face and looks in major pain in the middle of the street when that happens. My advice to him when that happens…move off to the side of the street instead of stopping suddenly in the middle and look busy, but PAY attention. Any thug(s) will target anyone that looks weak and hurt. Shoot, I feel like walking up and taking his iphone, bag and wallet when that happens, imagine thugs at night…

Oh and yes….grew up in LES before moving to Canarsie later on, last stop on the L before it became cool…talk about late night weed smoking, masturbating drunks late at night…first scared me…I would get up and move to another car. Then it just pissed me off, I’d flip them the bird, then move to another car. Then I got exasperated, just sighed, then move to another car.

If you HAVE to take the train at night to a non-hipster part of town, stay in the conductor’s car.

But if your friend looks crazy, that’s a plus. My Aunt Elaine used to walk around acting crazy so she wouldn’t get bothered. Well, she IS a little crazy anyway.

Ah, Narsie! Yeah, I used to be intimidated by the perverts. Now I just scream at them and they go away. I actually physically assaulted some guy who made a kissy sound in my face last month. Then I felt bad.

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