NYC is not like you see it portrayed on television.
In Manhattan people walk as though they are on the way to an ATM which is spitting out money, yet have been constrained by an invisible Lifeguard from running. Imagine a 12 year old power walking at maximum speed across the pool deck for popsicles. If you stop to tie your shoe you will certainly be given dirty looks, and may hear a comment or even get pushed. Walking two wide is a nice luxury from time to time, but it is not consistently possible. Walking four wide never happens.
The Weekly Brunch
First, it is doubtful people would get together this often. In the city, travel is time consuming. Though Manhattan is just a little island, getting from the UES to the UWS (crossing the park) takes over half an hour. People are commuting every day for work, and they are reluctant to travel very far for anything. When I say anything I am not exaggerating. It is common for people in Brooklyn to only date people who live in Brooklyn. Would it shock you that it is common for people in certain neighborhoods to have a maximum block radius within which they will date? This is true, so four people from all over Manhattan (not to mention in boroughs) getting together regularly like this is unlikely.
The Table Settings & the Restaurant
How about those spacious settings they always seem to have? In reality most of the time the tables are arranged for maximum seating capacity. Shared tables are also commonplace, with complete strangers to your left and right. This is totally normal here and people go on completely as though nobody was there. I could write a whole post about how interesting this is to experience. Also, any decent restaurant will have every seat filled.
Almost everywhere you would want to have brunch does not accept reservations. That means you’d be waiting. Furthermore, they won’t usually seat you unless your entire party is present, so none of this, oh hey, pull up a chair we have your mimosa here kind of thing.
This one must be a constant source of disappointment to new comers to the city. That is a (fictional) brownstone in the Upper East Side on 73rd Street, between Park and Madison. This is a seriously expensive place to live, think one of the most expensive areas in the United States of America. She would not be living there on a newspaper columnist’s salary. Just guessing, but it would probably be something like $4-5k a month today for this spacious studio with full kitchen and walk-in in closet.