By RYAN GORMAN
Dire forecasts predicting as much as 36 inches of snow for New York City did not pan out, but accumulations did hit just under a foot in many areas as New England braced for a historic blizzard.
Officials from New Jersey to Maine ordered all roads closed, transit shutdown and businesses shuttered Monday as millions prepared to face possible record-breaking snowfall -- but the white stuff largely missed New York City.
The storm shifted slightly to the east, moving significant snows to Long Island and away from New York's teeming millions -- but accumulations from 8 - 12 inches still fell across much of the city.
Photographer Anthony Quintano captured snow falling across Central Park and midtown Manhattan, including Times Square. The normally crowded areas resembled eerie ghost towns.
Roads were virtually empty as even the city's signature yellow cabs mostly took the night off and crowded sidewalks had a only a few hardy souls as snow accumulated and drifted across Manhattan.
CNN's coverage of the sputtering storm in New York drew widespread mockery as many to the north and east lost power amid snowfall from two to three feet.
The storm was mostly over in New York by Tuesday morning but largely set its sights on Connecticut, Rhode Island and eastern Massachusetts, including Boston -- which has virtually shut down.
Discussion of the monster storm exploded across Twitter as forecasters predicted "the storm of the century" over the weekend.
The conversation started in the U.S. but then quickly spread across the globe as visions of a storm leaving New York in a sub-Arctic wilderness similar to the movie "The Day After Tomorrow" came to dominate the discussion.
New York quickly flickered back to life Tuesday morning after many of the city's eight million people arose to realize communities only 20 miles to the east, on Long Island, were slammed with as much as two-feet of the white stuff.
Mayor Bill de Blasio, facing criticism from CNN, told the cable news network "better safe than sorry" when asked what he would tell those upset (mainly at CNN) that he shutdown the city's buses, subways and roads in advance of what turned out to be a routine snow storm.
Thousands of flights across the Northeast remain canceled as the storm rages on. New York transit is running on a Sunday schedule but is expected to resume full service by Wednesday.
Many New Yorkers are lucky to have dodged a record-setting storm, but New England still has another 12-hours to go.