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I just got back from a 7 day trip to Quebec City. What a wonderful place! Great food, people will just come up to you and start chatting with you, beautiful tourist sites like the Citidel. A great boardwalk right on the river. The natural areas are wonderful too. I visited 3 waterfalls, one of which you could dive and swim right in!
As we drove back south, the second I passed the border into MA, drivers became more aggressive and rude. I've lived in Boston for a year now and I can say with confidence that people here are the rudest and most self centered I've ever met before. I have 1 year left before I can leave and can hardly wait! I can say that I've grown a nice group of friends that were relocated here as well. If you do make the mistake of moving here, upon meeting anyone first inquire about where they grew up. If they are born and raised locals, don't even bother being friendly.
I do like the dress here - sloppy. I hate wearing shoes and very few people here dress smartly. Lots of people go out to dinner as though they are about to go jogging. It suits me just fine since I'm not trying to impress anyone anyway.
I posted this posting in another thread today as well (the thread was titled "Why do Bostonians take themselves so seriously?") yet deemed that my posting would be even more applicable to THIS thread. So I am posting it here (a bit edited from that last post) as well. Read below:
Part of what makes me come across as reserved or tuned out to strangers in public, especially in the big cities (in the streets, on buses or subways, et al)-- for those times when I AM or MAY be so --is that, many many times over the decades, I have found that when a person starts approaching or conversing with me out of nowhere in public, they have some ulterior motive that goes beyond mere niceties or simple friendliness. For instance, they have in mind to hit you up for money or other handouts, or they are trying to sell you something, or to get you to lend your time and energies to some cause, or to proselytize you for some religious or political purpose or agenda, or they are trying to come on to you. As to coming on to you, note that this isn't just applicable to females getting males coming on to them; gay males also sometimes take it upon themselves to come on to other males (even to straight males, like me).
And, virtually always, I find that when female strangers approach me in the streets or on public transit or in malls or shopping centers or public parks or wherever else, it is very very rarely because they want to establish a genuine friendship or relationship or to just share general niceties but rather (much much more often) that they are intent on begging/panhandling or otherwise trying to use me for some purpose.
(NOTE: None of this includes people approaching me for directions or guidance . . . to which I am always receptive, helpful, and warm.)
In summary, there are all sorts of people out there in the population-at-large who have what I will call here a “parasitic” mindset. That is, their intent with you is to somehow latch on to you and use you for whatever purpose they have in mind . . . whether for your monies or other material provisions, or to do special favors or deeds for them, to get you to bail them out of some life situation, or to turn you into their always-on-call free personal hand-and-foot servant. And I find that these people have little if any sense of reciprocity. That is, they are USERS of other people. To them, what life is all about is “take”,”take”, “take” (always being on the receiving end of other people’s generosity or hospitality) instead of them embracing the idea that life should be about “give and take” (not just always taking or receiving from others but also GIVING of yourself as well . . . so that the other person can gain or profit from YOU as well).
You see, my friends, even I (who, historically, has been described by many others, as being “a very nice person”, “sweet”, “kind”, “decent”, “generous”, etc. etc. etc.), have found it necessary to establish boundaries and not go through life wide-eyed and bushy-tailed. You make yourself too much of a doormat for other people. I am still capable of basic friendliness, courtesy, small talk or even more than small talk, et al (to a point) yet have become overall selective as to whom I will let or consider letting myself get involved with and have (hopefully) developed a sixth sense about those persons out there who are people users or parasites or simply not beneficial or rewarding for me to get involved with.
Having lived and traveled all other the U.S. over many decades (urban and rural, big and medium and small cities, small towns, city and suburban and exurban, and nearly all regions of the U.S. except the Pacific Northwest), I have met ALL kinds of people in ALL places. I have met mean people in the smallest towns and friendly and warm (even loving) people in the biggest cities. And vice versa. I do NOT get into the practice of brandishing a whole geographic locale (city or region) with one mindset (e.g., “everyone in New York City or Boston is cold”, “everyone in the south or in Texas is friendly”, “everyone is California is ‘laid back” and ‘easygoing’, et al). That is simply foolishness and plain dumb and my own many-years of experience don’t support such views. EACH SINGLE INDIVIDUAL either responds or doesn’t respond to the overtures of other individuals at whatever point in time and in whatever context or situation, depending upon what his or her OWN needs or concerns or disposition or situation is at that given moment in time. It is NOT a factor of where they are geographically situated. For instance, at times I have found people in New York City among the coldest, most distant people . . . and yet, at other points in time, I have been in New York City and was a veritable social butterfly and a hit with many others. I was described as “the life of the party” and told that “everyone loved you” at whatever social gathering I was at and had many women making passes at me and wanting my phone number. And I have, at times, found people in New York City distant and detached (i.e., cold) and yet, at other times, could have warm and engaging interactions with perfect strangers and make friends or even wind up with bed partners there. SO HOW CAN A SINGLE LOCATION BE BOTH TERRIBLE AND WONDERFUL AT THE SAME TIME (i.e., if “all people in <insert city or region name> are cold or mean or unfriendly”, as so many other people state)? It all comes down to what mood or disposition or life situation you catch a particular person in and what the other person’s self-perceived needs or wants are and how and if they perceive that YOU could be someone who can address or meet their own self-perceived needs or wants. Regardless of geographic locale. There's no universal monolithic mindset that all people in a city or town or region adapt. It's simply "the luck of the draw". Sometimes you get lucky, sometimes you don't.
The reason why people drive so crazy in Boston is because they're trying to hurry up and make enough money to move far away.
You know something? I spend a month in Boston in the Summer one year recently, and not once did I think their reputation as bad drivers was warranted, I think they drive very well in fact. Just don't spend an extra 2 seconds putting your makeup on after the light changes, they will ding you for that.
I've lived in the Boston area since the late 90s and I never had a problem making friends and socializing. I now work in Cambridge F/T and little has changed. One thing that is interesting about the area is that it has a large international population due to the universities, so I'm not sure what kind of judgements can be made based on that.
No gettin' around it, amigos: Beantown has some of the rudest people on the planet.
About 8 years ago I had just arrived at the Boston Airport (Logan?) and was went to the Information Counter and asked the dumpy, middle-aged, Bosox-hat-wearing guy behind the desk where I could find a particular jazz club downtown, where a friend of mine was playing that night.
He replies, "Whatta ya wanna know for?"
Actually: "Whatta ya wahnna know fo-ahh" in that constipated accent they all have out there.
I can afford it. In fact there are ~620,000 of us who can afford it.
Yep, and I didn't pay all that much for my single family, which is on >1/2 acre lot 25 min west of Cambridge. I'm from NY and no thanks. I've travelled the US extensively and between the beauty of New England, the white mountains a few hours away for amazing camping, the culture and music scene, and the fact that MA is an academic mecca, I'm pleased here.
With that said, it's surely difficult to live here for poor earners (<100k).
And it must not be so bad if you need to search discussion forums for a reason to leave.
Kind of agree with the girl thing, but I haven't found it much different down south. The average woman in parts of Georgia I've seen must weigh 300 lb. yet still think they're all that. And if you're in downtown Boston (Brookline maybe even more so) most you see aren't even from there.
Anyway, your experience is akin to me moving to Beverly Hills for 7 months and telling the world that I've sized up Greater L.A. Puhleeze.
With that said, it's surely difficult to live here for poor earners (<100k).
Are you for real? I must be living in a gutter then!
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