This is THE “Friends” building. What is THE “Friends” building, you ask? It’s the apartment building above Central Perk (let’s all pretend that restaurant is really a cafe!) in the lovely Greenwich Village that among others, is home to Joey Tribiani, Chandler Bing, Monica Geller, Rachel Green and sometimes Phoebe Buffay and Ross Geller! While some would say the use of the apartment building in the show was merely stock footage, a true fan of “Friends” believes that Joey and Chandler are relaxing in their lazy boy recliners inside that very building as we speak, while Monica and Rachel are playing with baby Ben in the apartment across the hall.
My best friend and I had a phase where “Friends” was basically the only TV show we ever watched. We had all of the seasons on DVD and if we were sitting in front of a TV there was no question as to whether we would watch “Friends” or not. The fact that we could quote almost any line, from any episode, verbatim kind of makes me wonder why we hadn’t set out to find “the friends building” any sooner than as recently as about two weeks ago. We do live in the outskirts of the city, getting to the building should have been simple enough. Or so we thought…
If there’s one thing anyone knows about my best friend and I, it’s that when both of our senses of direction are combined, all direction is lost. We have such a reputation for getting lost that her dad ironically and jokingly calls us Lois and Clark. We happened to be having tea in Greenwich Village one day about two weeks ago, when we realized we were in close proximity to the legendary apartment building and said, “Hey! let’s find it!”
So on the hottest day of the summer, walking under the sweltering sun, we set out from the tea room to the corner of Bedford and Grove. Well, thanks to both of our outstanding navigational abilities we ended up walking in circles around several different blocks in the area probably close to ten times. “Hey that store with all the hipsters in it looks familiar! I think we’ve passed here before!”
If you’re wondering, we did finally find it. I mean, my hair was frizzed out to Guam and I’m pretty sure I lost 3 pounds in sweat from walking around in the heat for over an hour (I know gross! but it was that hot) but we found THE Friends building! It was so worth it! The best part was, my friend and I, two totally non-tourist, native New Yorkers, got to the building at the same time as a large group of cackling, skyscraper gazing, non-English speaking tourists. Awesome! I felt like yelling, “I swear I’m from here!”
The other best part is that while I was walking around the city today, kind of just wandering and enjoying all of the scenery, totally not desperately trying to find a specific destination, I unknowingly walked right up Grove Street, and caught a perfect view of non other than, THE friends building! Oh, the irony!