NPF: THE LAND OF MILK AND HONEY

Posted in No Politics Friday on May 2nd, 2008 by Ed

(Note: This week was subpar on account of finals, and I will be making it up next week. Promise.)

What's the quickest way to meet 500,000 Missourians?

Visit Brooklyn.

If you have a lot of friends between 21-30, tell me with a straight face that you do not know the person I am about to describe (or possibly a few dozen of them). It never fails to amaze me how many people consider moving to the latest 21-30 mecca (after they hung a "Sorry hipsters, we're full" sign on Brooklyn in 2003, there was a brief infatuation with San Diego. It's currently Portland.) to be a complete plan virtually guaranteeing unending happiness. I can't say I blame anyone who wants to get the hell out of Indiana or whatever, but the illogic of moving wherever happens to be trendy escapes me. What could possibly work out better than moving somewhere "hot" (read: ass-breakingly expensive, as in $900/month for a closet sized apartment with three roommates) and sitting back to enjoy unadulterated happiness?

Some places are better to live than others. But your life is your life, and you can't use a U-Haul to make yourself happy. The "I'm so unhappy, but when I get to Brooklyn everything will be awesome" theory makes very little sense. No, when you get to Brooklyn your life is not going to be like Sarah Jessica Parker on that show I refuse to name. It's going to be expensive as shit, there will be three times as many identically-aged and -skilled people as there are jobs, and your neighbors will be a bunch of dipshits who just moved in from Dayton.

New York is cool. I like visiting. Portland, while wildly overrated, is nice too. But please, shut the fuck up about how great they are and how you're just about to move there and how great everything will be when you do. It does nothing but give me greater pleasure when you end up homeless, living under a tarp on someone's roof, and stealing wireless so you can blog about how great Brooklyn is (true story. seriously.) It ensures that I get a bigger kick out of it when you slink back into town because the best job you could find in Portland involved migrant farm labor (true story. seriously.)

When Chicago was "the" city in the late 19th Century, Mark Twain said "Chicagoans think they are the finest people on Earth when they are merely the most numerous." It applies broadly to any geography-based superiority complex. My life is imperfect and I'll probably be happy to leave southern Indiana, but not so I can become one of the sheep prattling on about how cool it is to live above a bodega that offers the privilege of paying $2.99 for an apple.