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By Julia Allison

Most New Yorkers’ reaction to Forbes ranking us #8 best city for singles was more or less universal bafflement.  Were there even seven other cities in the US??  With, uh, singles, that is?

Don’t get us wrong, we love Rankings.  Rankings mean there are Winners and, more importantly, Losers who are Not Us!  But we’re clearly the best city in which to be single  – so how could we have lost?  Well, Forbes obviously wasn’t evaluating on the right merits (duh). They factored in “culture” (we came in third, losing to … LA???), nightlife (we won!), job growth (jobs are useful for paying rent, but getting laid? they’re actually really distracting!), living cost and a category called “online.”  Oh yes, and “coolness,” which is admittedly sort of difficult to quantify, although we won it.  Of course.  In fact, NY did pretty well in all of the categories, except Cost of Living, which we slogged in at last place. (Shock.)

But so what if we have to store our shoes in our oven? We’re going on too many dates to cook, anyway.  Yes, this pond may be expensive, but it’s well-stocked with some very nice fish.

The REAL most important criteria of a SuperSingles City, of which New York is clearly #1, is fivefold: 1) number of singles, 2) quality of singles, 3) ability to actually meet those singles, 4) how long singles STAY single, and 5) odds that those singles haven’t already slept with that one slutty friend of yours.

New York wins in all of these, no question, and so dominates number #3 and #4 that no other city – not even you, #3 Minneapolis – has a shot.  After all, NY is the only true pedestrian city in the US, making it highly interactive as a rule.  In LA you’re safely – antisocially – ensconced in your home, then your car, then your movie trailer.  In NY, even celebs take the subway.  Or, okay, hail a cab.  On the street.  That threat of constant interaction leads to an unexpected – if not warmth and friendliness – at least ease at meeting new people.  And as we all know, meeting is a crucial step in actually having sex with them, which is (I’ve heard) a key component of dating.

Of course, meeting people doesn’t much help if they’re already married, which is something NY has going for it above all the other locales: Manhattan denizens stay single longer than anywhere else.  Mostly they’re focusing on their careers, working on their cultural street cred, being awesome, that kind of thing, but this means you afford to stay picky longer, without worrying that you’ll be left with your Mom’s friend Sheryl’s son Albert, who’s 48 “but a dentist, honey!”

Which leads to the most important factor: despite the incessant grousing, the quality of singles in this city is ridiculously high.  We’re intellectually stimulating, relentlessly ambitious, so cool we’re too cool to admit it, especially if we live in Brooklyn, and more or less wildly successful and/or loud in everything we do.  But then again, so is everyone else.  That’s why we moved to New York, after all.

Let’s just be clear: It’s “Sex and the City” … and they don’t mean Atlanta.

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