Thursday, October 15, 2009


Long Time - No Blog - Sorry to all...

But now I have been esconsed in my new job for nine (9) months, and I have made (or perhaps re-made) the most wonderful discovery about towns, cities, money, and life in general...

First and Foremost, as the hit song by Mellencamp says, I was born in a small town. Now, after almost exactly 40 years, I have managed to get back to one. And I know that I am Home. Five Hundred miles further south perhaps - but home nonetheless. In the most amazing (puzzling) way, I feel more at home here, where I work (population ±24,000) after nine months than I do 30 miles north, where I live (population ±256,000), even though I have lived there for 40 years - i.e. my entire adult life.

And I have figured it out, or so I think. The difference is the DYNAMIC of the town. In a larger city, there are sooo many people that it is common to only associate with a tiny fraction of the population, and that fraction is one that has been selected almost excusively because they share so many common interests, perspectives and attitudes. You don't live "with" your fellow citizens, you simply compete for space. This same self-isolation applies economically as well as socially - most "city dwellers" share very little time or space with those not of their "class". An affect made more acute by the fact that there are SO many different "classes" separated by so many $$$.

In contrast, in a smaller town, bthere are far far fewer people to "group" with. And as an inevitable result everyone is forced to associate to a much larger degree with those "different" from them. It's learning to coexist by simply coexisting. And the beautiful part of that is a much larger degree of acceptance - or rather learning to accept - those who are different. And economically, because the stratification is much more limited, there is much more "coexistence" in that way too.

So as if by osmosis, you "learn" your fellow citizens, their quirks and "funnies" and learn how not just to live with them, but to DEAL WITH THEM!

Now all this isn't perfect, of course. There are bigots and idiots everywhere and there always will be. And some people are just anti-social to the point of sociopathy. But they are everywhere, and at least in a smaller town, you have a greater chance of knowing who they are and how to be wary of them.

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