Monday, March 13, 2006

"Intellectual Backwaters"

Confessions of a Community College Dean: Shards, or, Life in a Northern Town: "Shards, or, Life in a Northern Town
I grew up in a backwater city, the kind of place where it’s always cloudy and cold and everybody is short and wide and the economy peaked a few generations ago. It’s one of those black holes of humanity from which not even hope can escape. The kind of place where the high school kids with ambition set their primary ambition as moving.

If you didn’t grow up in a place like that, it’s hard to convey what it’s like. As a kid, of course, you really don’t notice. But as you move into your teen years and the world gets bigger than your street, you start to notice that all the really interesting stuff happens in other places. Travel is difficult, since your city isn’t really on the way anywhere. The good bands don’t come; going to a concert is a many-hour drive. The ‘celebrities’ from your town, D-listers anywhere else, get an embarrassing amount of local coverage. Anything that’s happening is happening somewhere else."

More great food for thought from Dean Dad. Here's my comment (#22 on his list): I have usually been told (primarily by northerners) that my time in larger metro areas primarily in the southern US were "intellectual backwaters" for professional women. It's interesting to see this take on the northern 'backwaters' - on top of the contrast of what it's like to live in cities like NYC and actually survive and thrive.

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