Folks in flyover states are nitpicky when it comes to how they live, where they choose to plant roots, and what kind of neighbors they hope to have. They prefer wide open spaces, meandering creeks, majestic mountain views, and homestyle cooking. As Oliver Douglas of Green Acres lured his fetching Manhattan socialite and shopaholic wife, Lisa, to utter, “goodbye, city life,” those people who reside in the Midwest are happy to visit the big city – but happier upon their return home.
Because of the contentment of Midwesterners to breathe fresh air and live free and unencumbered by stacks of people, traffic snarls, and in the case of San Francisco, piles of people poop, it is unnerving when a survey touts Chicago as the third best city in the world – just behind New York City and Melbourne.
The Time Out Index surveyed more than 34,000 people in each location about cuisine, cocktails, culture, nightlife, community, neighborhoods, as well as their city’s beauty, affordability, and convenience.
Did I lose you yet in a fit of sarcastic laughter? Stay with me; it gets better.
Those well-meaning city slickers at Time Out Index must have stuffed the ballot box or just avoided interviewing anyone outside the Chamber of Commerce bubble as they found Chicago number one for eating and drinking and the location where the happiest people in the world surely live.
But the real people who live in the Windy City – or used to – had their say on Facebook.
Crime and Criminals
Political dynasties aside, crime in Chicago is a national disgrace. To date in 2019, 265 people have been shot and wounded, with a total homicide rate of 60 unlucky souls by other heinous means. And that’s not considering the fake hate crimes dreamed up by Jussie Smollett and his dynamic Nigerian duo.
Jeffery Bucel let us know of his retirement plans. “Lived there for almost all my life. 64 now and decided I wanted to live longer so I moved south in Illinois.”
Downtown resident William Scherer, who it appears is ready to run for office, gave posters this sage advice: “I live in the worst part of Chicago and I lived here for quite some time and never once been involved with any crime or shooting at me … sure I been robbed but that will happen.” Didn’t London Mayor Sadiq Khan say something similar when his city was attacked by terrorists?
Ed Brooks pounded the comments home with a Chicago trifecta, “Lots of crime, racial division, political corruption.”
But this guy, Raymond Garcia, wins the internet: “They must have surveyed these people at gunpoint.”
But, But, Affordability
Between dodging bullets and paying out the wazoo in taxes (Chicago boasts the third most expensive cigarettes out of 69 cities) Chicagoans, according to the geniuses at Time Out Index, claim the city is affordable. Compared to number one, New York City, it is. But seriously, rents are anywhere from $1,200 for a one bedroom unfurnished to a three-bedroom palace at over two grand a month. And the windows are not firearm projectile proof.
Every now and again a commenter with some economic knowledge offered intel, including Cathy Eschenbrenner Steinbeigle. “Nope – not with the tax situation- how many will leave this year? – 45k last year!”
To which Marvin Pfaelzer replied, “oy.”
Of course, some cared not to engage in rankings arguments and went all in for a new age mantra over their city, such as Corey Stuckey, Jr. “Of course 3 is my life path number. 3rd largest city and almost 3 million. 3rd letter of the alphabet is C.. coming from me.. Corey. We channel center Chi or energy hence the name. Chicago. Energy going places. That we are.”
If this were a townhall, Corey would have taken a beating.
As rankings go, no one has really heard much from Time Out Index, but it was a heck of a producer of comments, pro and con, for old Chi town. Granted, the city has world class dining establishments, deep dish pizza, a beautiful skyline, museums, and the most loyal, diehard Cubs fans in the universe.
Why aren’t more people leaving the family farm, packing up their rube fashion style, and trekking to the shores of the might Lake Michigan? As JS Smith says, “If it wasn`t for the high crime, sucky weather, excessive high taxes, political corruption,” everyone would live there.
Oh, yeah, then there’s the weather.
Nope, flyover folks are happy steering clear of the big cities.