Posted by Tom Crimmins Realty on Tuesday, August 27th, 2019 at 3:22pm.

Staten Island

What's the answer - "In" or "on"?

Often times we hear questions that we really don’t have the answers to. Questions that leave us pondering. Questions that inspire thought, yet leave us thoughtless. Ones that do nothing but leave us frustrated and defeated because we know that we, very well, may never find the answers.

What is the meaning of life?

Where did we come from?

Why is it that we park in a driveway, yet drive on a parkway?

Question after question — No answer after no answer! We are begging for the answers and yet, here, we find ourselves doubtful and rolling our eyes because the only one who gave us an answer was our drunken uncle who very well could be right, but we, honestly, JUST DON’T KNOW!

Well, if you came here seeking answers to those questions then we can’t help you. Now if your question is about real estate then we, for sure, have an answer. However, we wrote this blog to present to you another question. One, that like the others may not have a answer.

So, here it is:

Staten Island

Do we live “IN” Staten Island or “ON" Staten Island?!?

*EXPLOSION NOISE* (Mind-blown!)

We know what you’re thinking… “OH THAT’S EASY, IT’S IN!” (But then you find yourself playing back all those times you have said that phrase and very quickly you find yourself doubting what it is you actually say!


We understand the agony and the perplexity you’re going through. Back and forth, trying to recall what it is you say, or have said in the past. Then, when you finally have an answer you remember that one time you said it differently which inspires you to remember another 1000 times you have said it that way; leaving you frustrated and pissed off.

Which way is the right way to say it? Is there a right way? There has to be some grammatical guru out there who has the technical answer, but can that guru be found on in “on”* Staten Island? Is this a question that can even be answered by someone who doesn’t live ON “in” Staten Island?

Well, technically we do live “on” the Island, but then again we do say we have to drive “into Staten Island” when we are coming from Brooklyn or New Jersey. So, that’s kinda like saying “in.” Right?

NYC Subway

What if we replace "Staten Island" with “New York?” — Will that give us an answer?

I live “IN” New York?— I live “on" New York. THAT’S IT ! It has to be “in” right? “On New York” sounds ridiculous!

Well, technically it wouldn’t be that simple because New York, as a whole, isn’t an island so different rules may apply. Honestly, you can’t even use Manhattan for answers because, even though, it is an island it is much different than Staten Island because you can actually be “in” Manhattan. It has underground subways and trains so you are literally inside the island. Contrarily, Staten Island’s only railway is above-ground so technically it is “on” the island and not “in” it. So does that change your answer?


NYC Subway

How about this?

Let's think about some of our past conversations we've had when meeting someone for the first time. It’s like when we visit and speak to people from our neighboring borough (Brooklyn), or our bridge-buddy (New Jersey), we tend to say “I live ‘ON’ Staten Island” (and everyone ALWAYS does that awkward point with their hand toward Staten Island that seems to never actually be in the direction of where Staten Island actually is! The finger is kind of just up in the air while the other person nods acceptingly). (We’ve all been there!)

However, on the contrary, when we are in a completely different state that isn’t connecting to the Island we tend to say “I live ‘IN’ Staten Island” ( When you say “in” it’s never accompanied by a point— only “on” is!—ALWAYS!)

“ON and ON" the debate goes, leaving us without an answer, but then again, maybe there isn’t an answer — maybe they are both correct? Now, wouldn’t that piss you off if they were both correct? How can both be right…NO WAY — there has to be an answer!

Is it something that can be proven? Something that can be factual and technical, or is it just a matter of preference and opinion?

Personally I don’t care whether or not we live “in” or “on” Staten Island! I just enjoy living here…however, I can’t wait to hear your response on the matter! :D

Staten Island

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