As one of the cultural hubs of the world, New York City is home to many historically significant buildings, landmarks, and statues. The Big Apple may be one tough son of a bitch to live in, but you simply can't deny the history that lives within its limits. It's known as The Greatest City in the World for a reason, and it goes further than the fact that the pizza is pretty good there.
In New York, there is often a debate as to what defines a person as a "Real New Yorker." Some people think it's a particular moment, some people think it is defined by how much time you've spent in the city, but I think if you get a New York City-themed tattoo, it would qualify you. These people fall into that category, and I don't think anyone could deny that.
You could celebrate your New York life in a number of ways, but getting a tattoo is a permanent reminder that you once took a bite out of The Big Apple. It wasn't always friendly or kind, but it made an impact on your life, and you repay the city with your lovely ink.