should you have the least desire to protect yourself.--
if you live in new york city, or any place similarly situated, my advice for you is to get the hell out. the culture you prize isn't gonna be there much longer anyway.
if you cannot bring yourself to leave your condo off central park, then buy a place in upstate new york state where hunting is legal. what's that you say, you can own firearms in new york state? the answer is yes, you can, if you live in a county being overrun by deer and other game species.
find one. buy a small house or cabin. buy a very high quality gun safe, place it in a cinder block room with (walls, floor and ceiling, ... , "double block" it, if you can.) a locked entrance. buy a good quality gun safe to place inside it. buy guns. buy ammo. buy food for when food gets scarce, and potable water if you are not near running water.
learn what a "bug out" bag is. learn how to "bug out." fortunately, most places in new york state will be close enough to get there on one tank of gas. if you live on one of the island burroughs, figure out a way to get off the island if the bridges are out or closed. a rubber boat would be handy, in darkness, ... , but, drowning isn't so cool either, if you don't know how to use it.
have someone of the mainland to take you north. if you don't already, acquire such a person for a friend.
the bow and arrow. you may not be much of a student of history, but before the advent of firearms humanity fought some spectacularly lethal wars using the long bow, and the cross bow. (hint: the long bow is far superior in every respect, if you can "draw" it back, e.g., pull the string and arrow back. if you are not strong enough to do that, get a cross bow.)
buy at least a 16 ounce framing hammer, the kind with the "pointy" things to pull out the nails.
buy a very good quality knife. or, buy a set of chicago cutlery with a variety of "chef's" knives. very good for cutting and poking holes in meat, in any condition, including live.
oddly enough, the bow is a very good weapon. in your little corner of the urban jungle a good bow, if you can draw it, will have sufficient range to engage things at 50 to fewer yards or so, longer if you have any skill. i doubt you do.
the bow is silent. perfect for night combat.
the arrow is very, very lethal, and with the proper arrow head is an exceeding lethal, and a very quick & sure killer. an arrow can inflict sudden death and incapacitation as quickly as a bullet.
and, a framing hammer can certainly ruin an assailant's day, should he or she attempt to push his or her way past you to gain entry to your dwelling.
john jay @ 11.08.2012