For a riveting, romance-filled, hilarious seven seasons, New Girl wound us through the roving escapades of one Los Angeles apartment. And it all started with Dirty Dancing and one bad break-up: after Jess (Zooey Deschanel) catches her boyfriend cheating, she’s forced to move out of her home, left scraping through Craigslist advertisements for something new. But the whole bit really worked out in her—and our—favor. Without the break-up, there would be no Nick, no Winston, no Schmidt nor Coach.
Now look at them. They’re a whole squad, nearly inseparable from one another. It’s hard to imagine a world without Cece and Schmidt, Jess and Nick, and all the other lovely parts of this beloved sitcom. If you’re feeling nostalgic for all the good times at the apartment, you’re not alone—here are the best quotes from New Girl that made us laugh, swoon, and smile.
“Do you think that if I were a gold digger, I’d be interested in you? I would be the worst gold digger in the world!” —Jess, Season 2, “Quick Hardening Caulk”
When Jess and Nick start dating, Nick accuses Jess of being hot for his wallet. Really, though? Jess would gold dig Nick, who fixes the toilet with rubber bands? Jess fires back at him, reminding him that if she was really out for cash, she’d be after someone completely different.
“Every couple has a weakness. Kate and Will, I could break them up with one email. Oh look at that, look at the royal baby now, living with slutty Aunt Pippa.” —Schmidt, Season 3, “The Captain”
You’ve heard of The Crown. Now, get ready for The Crown, ft. the one and only Schmidt. I’d really like to read a draft of the email Schmidt is talking about here. All that aside, he’s got some true wisdom to offer here about couples and their weaknesses.
“Take these, and take care of them. I can get a tetanus shot, but I can’t cure damaged suede.” —Schmidt, Season 1, “Control”
The cost-benefit analysis technique has never been stronger. Suede wins over skin and well-being every time. Next time you’re worried about damaging shoes (or any type of nice clothing, to be honest), think: is it worth it? Or could health insurance fix this?
“So, I’ve decided to give up on women and put all that energy into tomatoes.” —Nick, Season 1, “Tomatoes”
Nick, ever the pessimist, quits a life of dating and relationships to pursue another passion: gardening. Not a bad idea! Only, the tomato plan fails, as Nick has the opposite of a green thumb. Props to him for trying, though.
“It’s like on the one hand, I’m killing myself, on the other, I’m making all this baller dough!” —Schmidt, Season 1, “Cece Crashes”
Such is the workforce, Schmidt. In an effort to woo Cece, Schmidt shows off his job: hard work, great benefits. The hustle is real. This quote applies to most gigs, honestly. Don’t forget the baller dough you’ll get at the end of the day.
“Here’s a fun idea: you can put a hat on him with antlers. This way, the hole he makes in the wall will all make us smile.” —Winston, Season 4, “Goldmine”
A random thought, but a good idea nonetheless. The boys are giving Jess advice on living with an ex, suggesting she confront her current boyfriend and tell him about Nick. They say that when he finds out, he’ll “run through the wall like the Kool-Aid Man.” Great imagery, made even better by the idea of him wearing antlers to add a little spice to the apartment.
“So, man, I’m in the locker room, and I see a spider, and I’m like, “I hope this is Charlotte’s Web and you’re nice.” —Winston, Season 4, “Dice”
Winston is right to assume every spider is like the delightful Charlotte of Charlotte’s Web—he always sees the best in everyone! After this statement, Winston goes on to explain the major plot points of the novel-turned-film: it’s about a spider who is “super chill and super cool,” she dies, “that was sad,” but he promises not to spoil it. Hopefully, you’ve got a different perspective on spiders, thanks to Winston.
“He’s happier than me watching Coach watching Winston yawn.” —Jess, Season 3, “Big News”
This is such a cute moment: Jess loves to watch Coach as he watches Winston yawn, a double voyeur. Winston’s yawn makes a kitten look like nothing, it’s so endearing. Then, seeing Coach appreciate his yawn is even better. And then, noticing Jess appreciate these two in action is even better. On top of all of this, we’re watching the three of them appreciate each other as friends. So cute.
“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? No, a summer’s day is not a bitch.” —Nick, Season 1, “Backslide”
Nick’s always had a way with words, but by dipping into Shakespeare, he’s turned into a true poet. I would like all high school literature classes to teach Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and more, but retold by the pen of sir Nick Miller.
“I can afford the valet charge and the ‘add onions.’” —Nick, Season 2, “Fluffer”
More inspirational material from Mr. Miller, and all the more reason for Jess not to gold dig this guy. We’ve all been there: you go to a fancy restaurant, look at the menu offerings, and shockingly, nothing is reasonably priced! Perhaps this is a cautionary tale to check photos of the menu on Yelp before making reservations.
“If I were off my rocker, would I take a weekly selfie with my cat?” —Winston, Season 4, “Clean Break”
Um, my answer is no. But others may say the opposite, and I don’t entirely blame them. A weekly selfie with a cat is a necessary routine to implement, and Winston’s love for his feline friend is so endearing. Nevertheless, this may not be the best example when trying to show people you’re not off your rocker. Still, long live Ferguson!
“A tampon? Why would you need this for cooking?” —Schmidt, Season 1, “Jess and Julia”
Somewhat reminiscent of the iconic tampon/nosebleed scene in She’s the Man, Schmidt pulls a tampon out of an apron pocket while he’s mid-rant. He’s coming to terms with having a woman in the apartment—not for sex, but as a real roommate—and this little detail is wonderful.
“You texted me back, ‘Happy Monday.’ What am I supposed to do with that?”
“I don’t know, maybe have a happy Monday!” —Cece and Coach, Season 3, “Sister”
When Coach accuses Cece of icing him out, she fires back about his lame text: “Happy Monday!” Who sends a text like that? It sounds like something a boss would email before rattling off a list of tasks for the week, not remotely flirtatious. Coach tries to defend himself — you know what? Maybe Cece should have simply had a happy Monday.
“This coat has clean lines and pockets that don’t quit, and when I wear it, I feel hot to trot.” —Nick, Season 2, “Cooler”
Yes, Nick’s excursion with a stolen women’s coat is one to remember. Especially since it comes in the beloved “Cooler” episode of New Girl, the one where Jess and Nick (spoiler) finally break the tension and kiss. That kiss! Kiss aside, the whole coat ordeal is a forgotten moment of the episode, and it’s brilliant.
“I’m not convinced I know how to read. I’ve just memorized a lot of words.” —Nick, Season 3, “Double Date”
This quote wraps up the legacy of Nick’s fantastic New Girl quotes, a lovely cherry on top to the series. What is language, if not memorizing words and how they fit in our lives? Really makes you think.
All seven seasons of New Girl are streaming on Netflix.
Fletcher Peters is a New York-based journalist whose writing has appeared in Decider, Jezebel, and Film School Rejects, among other spots. You can follow her on Twitter @fietcherpeters gossiping about rom-coms, TV, and the latest celebrity drama.
For all the latest TV news, reviews, lists and features, follow @Paste_TV.