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Donata Leskauskaite

“No Blankets”: Social Media Stunned By People’s Experience Waiting For The Times Square Ball Drop

Is there a more iconic New Year’s Eve event than New York City’s iconic ball drop? 

The buzzing atmosphere of Times Square, the colorful lights, the millions of people gathered sharing a happy moment, making you feel like if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere, and the hours-long wait… in diapers?

Taking to her TikTok page, photojournalist Michal Blank, who goes by “New York Mickey”, has documented what it’s actually like to come to the Big Apple to watch the 12,000-pound ball adorned with thousands of LED lights and crystal panels descend as people ring in the new year.

Michal Blank filmed people waiting for 18 hours in Times Square, New York City, to watch the iconic New Year’s Eve ball drop

Image credits: David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

This year, a reported hundreds of thousands of people flooded to Times Square to count down the remaining seconds before 2024, as they watched in amazement the emblematic geodesic sphere marking the event.

Michal ventured behind security bars, a couple of meters away from where the ball was to drop, to film some of the thousands of admirers waiting patiently to watch it all, with some waiting since the early hours of the morning of December 31st for a chance to get the best possible view.

In a video on TikTok, which has amassed 5.5 million views, Michal spoke to some New Year celebrants, with a man, who notably wore an orange coat over an impressive amount of layers of clothes, who revealed that he had been waiting behind security bars since 5 am.

Image credits: Leonardo Munoz/Getty Images

“You get here when you get here, first come first served,” he exclaimed as he imperturbably stood alone amongst an enthusiastic crowd.

As Michal could be heard behind her phone questioning in astonishment “You’re staying here until midnight?” she also further learned that the masses didn’t bring any food or water with them.

The man wearing the orange coat admitted that he had brought “just “me myself and I,” before further explaining that people were not allowed to bring in alcohol, chairs, blankets, or any type of bags.

Upon being asked if they could potentially order some food, such as a pizza, the orange-coat man replied: “I’ve been here before, the cops may not let the pizza boxes through.”

A man revealed that he had brought menstrual hygienic pads that he intended to use to pee

Image credits: mickmicknyc

The photojournalist captioned the initial video: “How will they hold up with no food and water for the next 18 hours?”

Hundreds of people rushed to the comment section to voice their concerns as a person wrote: ”All my life living in NY I never went to Times Square to see the ball drop and I’ll never.”

Another TikTok user commented: “I stay 10min away from Times Square. I have never wanted this.”

“My bladder would never make it,” a separate individual chimed in.

With raising worries regarding the whole bathroom situation, Michal went back to her first interviewees, where she asked them about how they planned to relieve themselves throughout the entire day (and night). 

The orange-coat man revealed that he had brought menstrual hygienic pads that he intended to use when needed. Another tourist said they were simply wearing diapers.

“You have to pee in these pants,” the orange-coat guy exclaimed.

Image credits: Times Square NYC

Michal went on to upload an additional video on TikTok which showed a pizza delivery man carrying boxes of food, confirming to commentators that the crowd had the opportunity to feed themselves after all, but for a certain cost nonetheless. 

“You have people there selling food and drinks. $20 for a sandwich, $5 for a drink. This pizza guy even met Rita Ora,” she wrote in the caption.

At 10:27, NYPD officers were filmed opening the gate before people were seen running towards the front scene of the ball drop, which Michal filmed for TikTok. In a follow-up video, the photojournalist showed the orange-coat guy in the nighttime, who appeared to be just as cheerful as he had been in the morning.

New Yorkers and tourists alike wrote their wishes for the new year on pieces of confetti that rained down to ring in the new year

Image credits: Times Square NYC

Michal captured the moment the gates opened as thousands raced to secure the best possible view of the performers

@mickmicknyc And we officially started the @Times Square NYC NYE celebrations 🥳💞 #newyearseve #2024 #timesquareball #bathroom #run #fyp #timesquare #nyc #planetfitness #ritaora ♬ original sound – New York Mickey

New Yorkers and tourists alike wrote their wishes for the new year on pieces of confetti that rained down to ring in the new year, CBS News News reported.

The Modaff family, visiting from Chicago, experiencing Times Square New Year’s Eve for the first time, told the broadcaster: “Like no other experience out there. This has been amazing all day.

“Being together with family on a holiday is a big deal, and we’re glad we’re all together.”

The celebrators revealed they were not allowed to bring in alcohol, chairs, blankets, or any type of bags

@mickmicknyc How will they hold up with no food and water for the next 18 hours? 🙈 NYE in @Times Square NYC 🥳 #pads #2024 #timesquareball #newyearseve #timesquare #fyp #nye ♬ original sound – New York Mickey

“You have to pee in these pants,” one man exclaimed

@mickmicknyc Welcoming 2024 in @Times Square NYC for NYE 🥳💞 Here are the people’s bathroom situation answers!! #newyearseve #2024 #bathroom #timesquareball #nyeball #fyp #timesquare #nyc #planetfitness ♬ original sound – New York Mickey

For the first time, the NYPD reportedly used tethered drone trucks for New Year’s Eve, which were strategically placed for extra eyes over the massive crowd.

NYPD Assistant Commissioner Kaz Daughtry told CBS News: “We’re looking for any type of anomalies, anybody having any medical episodes. We’re looking for if the pens are overcrowded.”

“There’s a lot of stuff you won’t be seeing, and that’s all of the intel resources we put in to making sure were identifying any leads and mitigating any threats,” said Rebecca Winer, NYPD deputy commissioner for intelligence and counterterrorism.

“5am and ended up two rows behind 8am,” a person noticed

“No Blankets”: Social Media Stunned By People’s Experience Waiting For The Times Square Ball Drop Bored Panda
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