JOHN Q. GOTHAM: In search of the statistical middle of NY

Lauren Collins in The New Yorker:

New20yorkerAccording to Kevin O’Keefe, whose new book, “The Average American,” chronicles his hunt for the most statistically typical person in the United States, the average American drives a car (eight years old, no vanity plates) and owns a home (permanent, freestanding, occupied by 2.62 people, with a washing machine, a dryer, an outdoor grill, and a private lawn requiring forty hours a year of mowing). He lives within fifty miles of the town where he grew up, has a listed phone number, and is regularly in bed before midnight. Fine enough for most of the country. But what about the average New Yorker?

To investigate this question, O’Keefe agreed, on a recent drizzly afternoon, to devise a sort of city census. His first stop was what passes, around here, for heartland—a Starbucks in Times Square. “O.K., let’s start with what we know,” O’Keefe said, poring over a sheaf of government records. “The average New Yorker has no owner-occupied dwelling, no car.”

More here.