Many of us consider ourselves to be law-abiding citizens. We respect the rule of law, at both the state and federal level, and try our hardest to obey its myriad mandates. We also assume to know, for the most part, what is legal and what isn't. Yet, at the state level, across the nation, there are a number of downright bizarre and nonsensical laws on the books that most of us are almost certainly unaware of. Consequently, we may find ourselves breaking the law on a daily basis - totally unaware criminals!

New York State is no exception. The Empire State boasts some particularly crazy laws, and not all of them can be blamed on our colonial ancestors. From requiring a permit to dance at work, to the banning of any noise in an elevator, below is a quick guide to some of New York State’s strangest decrees.

  • It is illegal to talk to other people while riding in an elevator in New York State. Riders must face forward and look at the doors, with their arms firmly folded and stay silent, Mix96Buffalo detailed.
  • Forget getting too cozy in the late evening: Slippers cannot be worn after the hour of 10pm, Long Island.com explained.
  • Clothes cannot hang on a clothes line outside unless a license has been purchased beforehand.
  • Ice-cream cones should not be carried in pockets on Sundays, Long Island.com reported.
  • Broad-tipped markers cannot be purchased by minors in Nassau County. Although impractical, the reasoning behind this law is (somewhat) logical. The mandate was implemented to curtail vandalism.
  • If you opt to commit suicide by jumping off a building in New York State, the punishment is death. There's just one problem with that... 
  • Don't risk talking to that cute guy or girl you saw on the Subway. In New York flirting is illegal, and guilty parties could be slapped with a $25 fine.
  • Women are not permitted to wear body-hugging clothing in New York.
  • Call the fashion police! In New York State it is illegal for men to wear pants and a jacket that do not match, Mix96Buffalo stated. 
  • In the town of Hempstead, in Nassau County, residents are forbidden from operating a mechanical bull, Long Island.com reported.
  • According to Mix96Buffalo, donkeys are prohibited from sleeping in bath tubs.

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