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Keeping our momentum

This morning Kevin Marshall tweeted me a link to a blog post by Andy Weissman (partner at Union Square Ventures in New York). The post is about how small things matter—even small words.

He starts by talking about a new sidewalk extension and curb cut at 86th Street and 3rd Avenue in Manhattan. This may seem like a pretty banal thing to talk about, but it’s in support of his argument that small things—like even a curb cut—can be used to solve bigger problems. In this case, the intersection was a dangerous one because of poor pedestrian visibility.

But what I really like is how he describes the pulse of New York:

“The rhythm of NYC is such that we need to keep moving and in motion; as a result, waiting to cross a street by standing at the curb is not enough, we must walk into the street to get going or keep our momentum.”

This is great and it’s bang on. People in New York don’t stand at the curb waiting for the light to change. They impatiently push onto the street and wait for the first opportunity to cross. This may seem like a small tendency, but I think it speaks volumes about the character of New York.

People in Toronto generally don’t do this.

They (not me) wait patiently at the street corner even if there aren’t any cars coming. Why? Think about this the next time you’re standing on guard at the crosswalk. Don’t lose the momentum. The world rewards those who poke the box and keep moving.

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