Ah, New York State, home to the capital of world culture, New York City. Remember, though, there’s more to the Empire State than just the Big Apple. There are plenty of other towns in the region that aren’t quite as cosmopolitan as NYC. You may think of New York as the home of modern enlightenment and worldliness, but the state has its fair share of stupid laws on the books. Granted, many of these silly rules are old and rarely enforced, but if you’re not careful you just might be breaking the law.
1. Problems With Marriage
The laws that govern the state are still a little arcane when it comes to matrimonial bliss. According to the official rules, adultery is still a criminally punishable offense. What’s more, if a married couple files for divorce, they’re not allowed to use “irreconcilable differences” as their motivation unless both parties agree.
2. The Joy of Boobies!
In New York, women can feel free to walk topless through the streets and flaunt the gifts bestowed upon them. Unless, of course, those women are using their nudity to earn money. So, it’s fine for ladies to give it away for free but a crime for them to charge.
3. The Peanut Statute
In one small town in New York, it’s illegal to eat peanuts, but only if you’re walking backwards on a sidewalk. Honestly, though, even that is okay, provided there’s not a concert going on. It’s a very, very specific rule.
4. Illegal and Impossible
The people in New York must be abnormally bouyant. One town’s rules state that it’s illegal to eat when you’re swimming in the ocean. Not only would it be difficult to swim and chew at the same time, it’s tough to imagine something that would taste awesome with tepid sea water all over it.
5. Ice Cream Cones
New York has made it a crime to walk around on Sundays with an ice cream cone in your pocket. Of course, it’s probably a good idea to never put an ice cream cone in your pocket, but the real question here is: why is this only outlawed on Sunday?
6. Suitable Attire
In one small town in New York, there are very distinct rules about the bathing attire. It’s illegal to bathe in the city limits without being clad in a “suitable bathing suit.” Unfortunately, there are no specific rules determining what “suitable” means, so this must be a difficult one to enforce.
7. Elevator Decorum
This is one law that should be strictly enforced across the country, nay, the world. In New York, the appropriate behavior while riding in an elevator is to keep it zipped while facing the door with your hands folded. Don’t laugh, don’t chat on the phone, don’t try to look at the people riding with you. Just find your floor and don’t engage with me … er, each other.
8. It’s Grade School Trauma
This one has to be the result of some elementary school razzing, right? A future law maker got mocked and then turned to his abuser and vowed, “Oh yeah? I’m gonna make it illegal for citizens to greet one another by putting one’s thumb to the nose and wiggling the fingers, you meanie!” And he (or she) made good on that. It’s really inspiring, actually.
9. The Suicide Rule
In the state of New York, jumping off a building more than 50 feet tall is illegal. Another way to say that is: if you attempt suicide by jumping off a building and you fail, the government will be more than happy to get the job done for you. The person you have to feel bad for is the guy who leaps out of a burning building and miraculously survives, only to get immediately arrested and charged with a capital offense.
10. Keep It To Yourself
One has to wonder how people actually find each other in New York. It’s got to be especially difficult since the mere act of flirting can be greeted with a fine of $25 (don’t people break this law every day?). So, either keep it to yourself, or learn to keep it really subtle.
11. The Girly Man Law
In one of the five burroughs (we’re looking at you, Staten Island), somebody must have had a tough Pop, because it’s now totally illegal for a father to use … let’s call them rude slang terms for homosexuals … in order to man his kid up. The weirdest part of this rule is that it actually needs to have been written down.
12. No Burgers Allowed
In Ocean City, New York, they must love the heck out of their piping hot hamburgers, because raw hamburger can’t be sold. We’re not sure how this works, as like, 90 percent of easy, modern cooking revolves around ground beef.
13. The Anti-Bullying Law
You have to assume this one has been put in the books recently. In New York, it’s illegal to get your jollies by throwing a ball at someone’s head for fun. There’s no confirmation as to whether or not it’s okay to throw a ball at someone’s head for some other reason (spite, maybe?), but we’re betting that’s frowned upon, too.
14. Camping Out
In one county in New York, its illegal for landowners to camp out on their own land for more than 72 hours a month. If you want to sleep outdoors on your own land up to two weeks every year, you’re going to need a permit, which can only be obtained once annually.
15. The Bedtime Law
In New York, it’s totally illegal to wear slippers after 10 pm. Moving past why such a dumb rule would ever be necessary, we’re assuming the motivation was … statewide bedtime? You can’t wear slippers because you’re supposed to be in bed? That’s a shame, because post 10 pm is the best time ever to wear comfy slippers.