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Old 07-19-2012, 03:49 PM
 
16 posts, read 53,222 times
Reputation: 19

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I was raised in the northeast since I was 8. I moved to Columbus, OH for school in 2008 and have now spent about 5 years here (sometimes flying back home for a few days). I still do not fit in, in the midwest. I'm not saying I side with the northeast on every issue- on some points, I side with the midwest sometimes. But I think the northeast has a definite edge. Here is my analysis.


Northeast- much more fast-paced life, much more exciting, much more variety and flavor in Life. They're moving at a quicker tempo, speaking at a quicker tempo, and as a result they're Thinking at a quicker and sharper tempo. The quicker you can think, the smarter you'll sound speaking at a quicker speed- the cooler you are, the more you are respected.
Much more cultured and seem sharper and aware 
of music, movies, scientific knowledge, and etc. This knowledge is freely dispensed in a 
Conversation- that is nice because that way everybody can learn something. There is no
 Self-consciousness about knowing things or learning things as there is in the midwest.
 NE is a place where even a truck mechanic will gladly go to a classical Music orchestra concert. Plans to go and do exciting things are normal. It's about spending Your time doing the most varied, exciting and fun activities possible rather than shunning All of these experiences in order to focus on the close connection with other people. But the
 Dark side of this is that they never get to experience that exhilarating joy of a new experience or get to share this excitement with others in conversation. They seem to have a reduced capacity to enjoy the highs of experiences as well as the lows.

Bluntness in the NE is also refreshing- you will rest assured knowing if somebody likes something
 you're doing or if they don't like something you are doing. Why? Because EVERYTHING is said.
Everything that would normally delivered non-verbally in the midwest is delivered through speech, 
Even an “um” before pausing to keep the other person from jumping in because there is still
 something he wants to say. In the midwest, that “um” wouldn't be there because there isn't that
 anxiety about somebody interrupting.

Northeast: A society focused like a laser on success and competing in the market and
punctuality and speed and efficiency. We were raised to be worker bees and a huge focus on
 productivity and being a productive member of society, using your time productively, etc.
 Fun happens not through fooling around, but fun is the feeling you get after accomplishing
 something great that you worked very hard for. Success is that happiness you feel because
 you have done good work. Getting the “timing” right a preoccupation- very concerned with
 particulars. A commitment made is a commitment kept. If you just blow it off, that's a 
BIG DEAL- possibly a friendship ending mistake. Same thing with a failure to respond to an email or a phone call...HUGE mistake.



1.
Fundamental Northeastern concept: The speedily completed conversational unit
Fundamental Midwestern concept: The sincere and nice connection with the other person

2.
Northeastern: reassurance through many fast, blunt and sometimes superficial/flippant 
Words. You do EVERYTHING using fast-tempo words. The goal is to make conversational 
unit go smoothly- also to make the gaps between units quick and smooth. Also to get across a shared cool and pleasant surface attitude.
Midwestern: reassurance through a long, slow, low-stress, sincere, kind engagement with 
full attention.

3.
NE: Saying everything you mean and then some.
MW: Only saying things that are true 
And withholding/implying a lot of true opinions- a lack of bluntness and honest personal 
feedback with the person they are actually WITH and a tendency to talk behind their back 
Later. (MW respond to NE bluntness such as criticism with “niceness”, and then may 
shun them and never talk to them again)

4.
NE: People give other people direct commands as if they're in the military.
MW: If people 
want something done they will just strongly imply it.

5.
NE:Bluntness and aggressiveness in conversation a valued trait. NE sometimes pushy and want to spend time with you and when you say you are busy they'll, "Busy? Doing what? What do you have to do? It's a long day!" And they won't take the hint unless you actually say it explicitly.
MW: Tact and 
Niceness valued

6.
Midwest: derives humor from breaking rules of sophistication or proper decorum in
 places, such as a restaurant.
NE: Think this is embarrassing and not funny at all.

7.
MW: Being “nice” to people>striving for and achieving the best possible result. Never reach anywhere near the limits of human potential.
NE: Striving for and achieving the best possible result>being “nice” to people. EVERYBODY in the
Northeast understands that when somebody is cracking down they are not being personally mean, 
but are intent on getting a particular result because achieving that result makes life exhilarating and 
Benefits mankind at large. Those stern looks and stern words, lack of engagement, and extremely tight discipline are cause for excitement, not stress, Because it telegraphs to everybody that we're involved with serious business now and doing something of great import. Life has valleys and lows, but it has great peaks and soaring excitement, too. Bluntness saves an incredible amount of time. Sternness and this apparent "meanness" doesn't faze us at all.

8.
NE: We aren't allowed to show 100% engagement with somebody. Might be made fun of as “creepy”
 for looking so interested in/respectful of what they are saying. Words are cheap; why are you
 treating my every word like they're so precious? Showing superficial interest and smiles and waves
 and small talk and so forth is normal. But “pretending” to be so interested in every word I'm saying
 is just disingenuous.
MW: They aren't allowed to get excited about THINGS, PLACES, IDEAS, or AMBITIONS, SPECIAL EVENTS, ACCOMPLISHMENTS, or RECOGNITION FOR ACCOMPLISHMENTS. They aren't allowed to “sound” excited about it or display energetic/excited/curious body language. They might make fun of you or at least think you were funny for showing so much 
Excitement. The dark side is that they lack the ability to truly GENERATE excitement or sound passionate about any of the issues, and so lack the ability to have an edge and are afraid when they confront somebody who does have an edge and who hasn't been neutralized.

BEHAVIORS
1.
Walking fast or moving quickly or hurrying.

MW: Tightly wound, impatient, kind of an idiot for moving so fast, thinks he's better than me.
NE: Respect the fact that he's in a hurry. People who move quicker get a lot more done.

2.
Talking in a plain, straightforward way.

MW: Our way of being down to earth-derive pleasure and humor from
 boiling things down to essential concepts in casual
 conversation- shows you know what's up
NE: Unsophisticated.

3.
Making abstract statements and letting them hang.

MW: People don't talk like this- it's not cool or clever. How am I supposed to respond to that?
Is that a joke? Why did he put me on the spot like that? Not down to earth. Thinks he's better.
NE: Respond as quickly as possible to complete the conversational unit. And actually, the abstract 
statement itself was probably made as an anxious response driven by not having anything 
specific to say, but being aware that a certain amount of time has elapsed since the completion 
of the last conversational unit, and not knowing what to say next is not cool.
MW: 
Who cares about trying to grasp at straws and thinking about what to say next? How am I 
supposed to respond to that meaningless statement (meaningless for our conversation, that is-
 it could be an interesting philosophical point, but that's not how you approach a philosophical 
discussion, is simply making a quick abstract statement and letting it hang). I'm in no hurry and 
I won't judge you for not knowing what to say next. Why not turn that brainpower to a different 
use- focusing on me, giving me your full attention and respect, and being considerate enough of 
me to actually say something that I can respond to without being completely at a loss for how 
what you said has any relevance to our conversation.

4.
Making flippant statements and lots of surface smiles and quickly returning 
another person's facial expressions.

MW: Why is he putting on a big show? Must not like me- must 
obviously be hiding his true feelings.
NE: Casual and cool- this is a determinant of social value and understanding. Necessary currency.

5.
Abruptly ending a conversation, as if with a couple words and a huge period.

MW: Extremely rude.
NE: Necessary currency. A normal part of body language shorthand indicating 
end of a conversation and mutually understood. They'll understand you're busy.

6.
Not abruptly ending a conversation.

MW: Normal. What's the hurry?
NE: Why are you leaving me hanging? Creates discomfort that you haven't stepped in and
 helped them abruptly close that unit of conversation.

7.
Responding quickly and aggressively to everything that is said. Readiness to do so
 at all times by second nature, even unexpectedly.

MW: How weird and stressed out. I'm in no hurry and I won't judge you for not filling in every single
 little pause in the conversation. In fact, I'll probably think more of you if you don't. Don't put
 me on the spot like that. What's the matter with you?
NE: Necessary currency. Failure to execute results in wounded looks in the eyes and a rapid 
and definitive end To the conversational unit- completing this gives them comfort. This is 
THE way that they stay conversationally grounded
- conditioned to hurl back the next sentence like a dog responding to a dinner bell. To avoid
 throwing the ball back is a refusal to help the other person continue the conversation and 
save face- a rude and mean thing to do (I take it personally in the same way as a midwesterner
 would take bluntness and a quick, abrupt “cut” (in a conversation or out of it) personally. If 
you don't do this, then you are terrible at functioning in society and not a friendly person.

8.
Leaving time in between comments and not responding to all of them.

MW: Keeping it real, thinking before speaking, speaking 
only when necessary, smart, taciturn culture.
NE: An almost unforgivable offense. Pretentious. He must not like me 
at all to make me so uncomfortable and so “on the spot”. A pause is not respectful- it's insulting
 and makes you socially awkward.

9.
body language- non verbal cues that indicate bad mood or hiding something 
(anything) or lack of eye contact, or a disinterested, “casual” look directly before or after 
conversation, or looking away, or anxious or tense. Surface politeness on top of it to cover it.

MW: Unforgivable. You are a true "*******". Given the opportunity, you 
would treat somebody badly if you could get away with it. It is cool to 
shun this kind of behavior.
NE: Not important at all, so normal that this is not even picked up on.

10.
talking about church

MW: Normal, nothing to even consider.
NE: You're showing off that you think you're better than us. Socially very weird to mention it.

11.
talking about money or prizes or awards or famous people met or something
 you accomplished

MW: Social value goes down- you must not be very smart. Who are
 you trying to impress anyway? Are you trying to be better than me?
NE: Give him lots of praise and recognition and show interest in the great things he has done.

12.
saying that you don't know something or that you're not very good at something

MW: humorous and a bit of conversational shorthand
- an understanding that when people say, “It's no 
big deal” or “I didn't work that hard on it”, they may 
have worked 14 consecutive hours on it. “Do but 
don't tell- let the work speak for itself” is the philosophy. 
Don't ever give the person the impression you think you
 are better than them. A source of pleasure, humor, and comfort.
NE: Think that you really are ignorant and really don't know what you're talking about.

13.
Sarcasm and cynicism and irony

MW: Why are you being so negative? There's nothing funny about nastiness. Sarcasm the 
language of the devil.
NE: Casual and cool- this is a determinant of social value and understanding. Also a side effect
 of total bluntness. Also a source of lots of humor.

14.
Earnestness, open eye contact, the sincere “connection”, giving full attention 
to the other person, “church face” as you give their words respect, not hiding
 anything or communicating any hostility or disinterest. Readiness to do so
 at all times by second nature, even unexpectedly.

MW: ***Necessary currency. Failure to properly execute results in censorious coughs and
 wounded, hurt looks in the eyes and turning to another person to get that connection again-
this comforts them.
(the weakness here is while the northeasterner's method of regaining
 comfort is self-sufficient because he can simply end the conversational unit and walk away
 rapidly to feel “right” again- this is the normal procedure anyway), the midwesterner is locked into 
having to seek this connection from somebody else. Therefore when they are in an 
unfamiliar place alone and don't have that comforting connection, they feel lost and confused
 and they are not grounded).

NE: Cheesy and overbearing and open for ridicule- also, he must not like me because he's not smiling
 and he's being excessively formal and showing me so much attention and not being “real” with me
- does he think he's better than me? He must not like me if he's not willing to talk to me on my own
Level. It's not cool to act like you're taking people that seriously. They're just people. This kind
 of open earnestness is considered an outdated “Gee Wally” kind of attitude not at all the same
 as the rapid, “cool” flippancy which involves not taking the person that seriously. If anything the 
effect is irrelevant because making and breaking full engagement with human beings is not a focus-
That is why if you have a mild connection with someone (for instance, you are walking past them
 and notice them) and are in a nasty mood, the effect in the Northeast is largely irrelevant, 
where in the midwest not only is the engagement a point of focus, but so is the degree of 
engagement and the content being communicated during the engagement. This “bad” content 
being communicated is taken very personally by the midwesterner, because from the time they 
were young the importance and meaning of engagements was hammered into them. The 
content communicated by the northeasterner, though, is completely unintentional. And if you 
make an engagement with a midwesterner and it has bad content in it and then you try and 
cover it up, then you are an “*******.” It is your RESPONSIBILITY as a member of society 
to cover up your ill will and hostility so well that it appears sincere and there is no hostility 
being communicated during everyday engagements and never the appearance of hiding anything 
in your true self, whether it is walking past someone on the street or talking to the cashier at the 
store. If you don't do this then you had terrible parents and you are terrible at functioning in society.

One specific thing done to establish comfort in the northeast which was bred into me growing 
up (looking at somebody for a couple seconds with the connection and then deliberately breaking it as you look away disinterestedly) is the same thing that so offends Midwesterners when you do the same.

15.
Using manners and saying “and you?” sir, ma'am

MW: His parents raised him correctly.
NE: Stilted and unnecessary and outdated and 
kind of corny- must be a hard-core conservative.

16.
dressing nicely

MW: He's a “sir” to be treated with extra respect.
NE: Bemusement and sometimes ridicule. Must be a conservative.

17.
holding doors open for women

MW: shows you are intelligent
NE: Patronizing, outdated, kind of stilted- is this guy for real? 
Must be a conservative.

18.
Somebody quickly breaks the connection when in a conversation to do
 something else that they have to do, then they come back to the conversation

MW: Rude and selfish and offensive.
NE: Normal and “casual”. Casual=cool. A natural break.

19.
interrupting, finishing another persons' sentence.

MW: Cool it, boy. Why not just wait until I'm done speaking. Not cool conversationally to 
jump in like that when I'm clearly not done saying what I was going to say.
NE: The other person stopping is a way to say, help! It's a plea. “I need to finish this unit.”
 When they are struggling to find the right word, you realize it makes them look uncool and so you kindly step in, save them from the “awkwardness”, and complete the unit.
MW: Actually, there's no shame at all in 
pausing in order to find the right word. The right thing to do is encourage them
 nonverbally, by nodding perhaps- if anything.

20.
how conversations are executed

MW: : : == == === === ==== ==== ===== 
===== ===== ===== ==== ==== 
=== === == == 
(no abrupt and artificial ending, instead, 
reaffirm that relaxed, sincere connection and 
walk away).
NE: :::::: (call, response, call response, end of unit.
 Interfering with that unit or trying to communicate
 Meaningful emotion about how you are liking the
 person or how you are liking the conversation in
 that unit is BAD. Cooly pause, maybe nodding,
 maybe smiling, maybe frowning. THIS is where
 you communicate how the conversation is going 
and open up and be real- in between the units. 
 :: :::: ::::: ::::: ::::: :: (he turns to go but then 
Remembers something) :::::::::: ::: :::: ::: : :

21.
telling rather than showing someone what you actually think about them, 
Whether it's “I think you're a wonderful human being” or “I don't like you.”

MW: unthinkable on the bad side, cheesy and insincere on the good, don't know how to react.
 Feelings about somebody are shown and implied, so this outright declaration of words
 is difficult to take seriously.
NE: A wonderful, breezy compliment or a moment of commendable “honesty” and “realness” and 
“self-expression.” Since everybody is truly blunt, the words are taken at face value. Self-expression
 is done explicitly through words rather than implicitly through actions, words that bely certain 
deeper attitudes, and words omitted or left unsaid.

22.
acting impatient, walking around somebody, acting like you've got someplace to
 go or that you want to end the conversation without telling the 
other person what it is and apologizing

MW: I'll let you go, but privately I think you're extremely 
Rude and inconsiderate.
NE: Normal, don't give it a second thought.

23.
Calm and relaxed and unhurried.

MW: Normal. Never be impatient, ever.
NE: Rude and inconsiderate. I have someplace to be! Out with it! Come on! Say something! Finish
 the unit!

24.
bluntness

MW: Completely alarming. You must really dislike me and I take what you're saying
 personally- I am personally hurt. Likewise, when I have 
been nice and bottled up for long enough and taken this 
abuse for long enough, when my top finally blows off and 
I speak bluntly to criticize, I really mean what I'm saying 
and I'm directing it personally right at you as a person.
NE: Most efficient. Least hypocritical. Worthy of lots and lots of respect. No offense intended, none taken.

25.
ignoring manners

MW: You closed the door in my face or reached across me at the dinner table for a bowl, and I could tell you meant
 it personally. What an *******.
NE: Casual and cool- this is a determinant of social value and understanding. Not taking manners
 seriously is a sign of casualness and cool and social progress that we have developed beyond
 “stifling” and “artificial” manners. That was so hypocritical. By leaving out manners this is our
 way of being more down to earth and “real”. By using all these manners, you are NOT being
 down to earth- you think you're better than us.

26.
a lack of bluntness and implying subtly what needs to happen.
MW: It's incumbent on the person I'm talking to to understand
 what I am implying and go do it. Since good people 
have a good work ethic and a good set of values, this is all that needs to be said.
NE: I don't take you seriously at all. You are a weak leader. You are unable or unwilling 
to lay down the law. You are much too soft. I don't feel any compelling reason to do 
What you're telling me to do. What are you going to do to me? Give me a sad look? 
That doesn't work with me- that doesn't make me feel any guilt or any lapse of 
responsibility on my part. Only stern, matter-of-fact words and stern, blunt delivery 
show me you mean business. Lack of bluntness=
Complete failure to communicate what you want. You can't count on people implicitly understanding
 what you ACTUALLY want in this day an age- they are not driven by those old morals and work
 ethics. You have to spell it out, lay it out like a dictator. Otherwise, if you're all nice to them and
 suddenly you fire them, they will feel resentful and cheated because you were never straightforward
 with them, you were never blunt with them. The midwesterner would say, “I shouldn't have to be. 
If I have to spell it out how to be a decent person in my organization, that's not somebody I would
 want working here to begin with.”

27.
somebody says something to me like small talk.

MW: He wants to engage me. I need to finish what
 I'm doing, set it down, and turn to give him my 
Undivided attention.
NE: Snap to it! Respond immediately- throw it right back at them. Also, you may continue working. After 
All, if you always stopped working or doing what you were doing every single little time that somebody 
Talked to you to give them your full attention, you would never get anything done.
MW 
comeback: That's why you don't Pester someone and keep trying to talk to them if they are 
obviously working or otherwise occupied And they have not indicated through body language 
A desire to engage right now. To do so would be Uncourteous and impolite. This is also why 
So much fluff and mindless gabbing and endless words is not cool.
NE: Yes, it is cool. It's 
Called, “Completing the conversational unit” as quickly, snappily, and wittily as possible. That's cool!
MW: What conversational unit? Either you are engaging in a conversation or you are not. 
It is stupid to treat people like trash and have the conversation anyway when you are not engaged.
NE: But it is second nature to us to complete these units while we are doing other things, 
like breathing out and breathing in. We NEVER sit down for protracted discussions in complete 
sentences and waiting each others' turn and reflecting on what the other person
 is saying and weighing their degree of engagement (how much attention they are giving you). These 
quick bits of conversational grammar, these units, are the only way we know how to communicate. 
 And speed is of the essence! The better you are, the more you know all the right things to say in 
response to ANYTHING the other person could throw at you and never leave the other person hanging. 
I don't care if you actually believe 100% in what you're saying or even demonstrate 100% belief in 
what you are saying, but volley back and forth and complete the unit appropriately! Get the good mood across! That is the sign of 
Social intelligence. MW: No, the measure of social intelligence is to never give less than 100% 
Engagement when you are in a conversation and to not be an *******

28.
A girl comes up to talk to a boy and flirt with him.

MW: How forward.
NE: how pleasant/normal

29.
starting a conversation by saying, “Hi, it's Joe and I'm trying to meet new people today!”

MW: why not start it by casually pointing something out in the environment and gradually easing more
 and more into it? That's the way you do conversations. You don't start a conversation with an
 exclamation point that way. What are you, trying to be showy and flashy like you're better than me?
NE: how fun and cool. This is how you're supposed to start a conversation. If you just pick 
something in the environment and then gradually talk about more and more personal things, 
that seems very devious and un-blunt, as if you lack the confidence to just say things outright. 
This goes for dating especially.

-----------
And a couple final observations:

Northeasterners much more likely to wave at you, smile while you're talking, and
being concerned with outward politeness and putting up a nice front. If you put
up the right front and put a lot of effort into returning friendly gestures and facial expressions
and verbal exclamations, regardless of your mood, then you are a good and friendly person.
After all, why would we judge you on something you can't control? Also more likely to start
a happy back-and-forth conversation with a total stranger and ask them directly, where do you live,
what do you do for fun, etc.

And northeastern women generally much more physically attractive, better dressed, and understand the concept of flirting just for the hell of it and casual, fun dating.

So, does anybody else have any other differences to add? I think this pretty much sums it up and the differences are much more stark and fundamental than most people realize.

 
Old 07-19-2012, 04:15 PM
 
Location: Chicago (from pittsburgh)
3,696 posts, read 4,529,217 times
Reputation: 2904
perhaps the entire Midwest isn't like Columbus and the 5 years you spent there and the people YOU encountered....ever been to Chicago or Minneapolis? Absolutely nothing like Columbus. I may as well say that Pittsburgh is just like NYC.
 
Old 07-19-2012, 04:18 PM
 
Location: Michigan
4,571 posts, read 7,029,475 times
Reputation: 3599
This totally isn't an over-generalization of an entire region based on one city...
 
Old 07-19-2012, 04:18 PM
 
2,601 posts, read 4,068,969 times
Reputation: 2275
Quote:
Originally Posted by josephconrad View Post
I was raised in the northeast since I was 8. I moved to Columbus, OH for school in 2008 and have now spent about 5 years here (sometimes flying back home for a few days). I still do not fit in, in the midwest. I'm not saying I side with the northeast on every issue- on some points, I side with the midwest sometimes. But I think the northeast has a definite edge. Here is my analysis.


Northeast- much more fast-paced life, much more exciting, much more variety and flavor in Life. They're moving at a quicker tempo, speaking at a quicker tempo, and as a result they're Thinking at a quicker and sharper tempo. The quicker you can think, the smarter you'll sound speaking at a quicker speed- the cooler you are, the more you are respected.
Much more cultured and seem sharper and aware 
of music, movies, scientific knowledge, and etc. This knowledge is freely dispensed in a 
Conversation- that is nice because that way everybody can learn something. There is no
 Self-consciousness about knowing things or learning things as there is in the midwest.
 NE is a place where even a truck mechanic will gladly go to a classical Music orchestra concert. Plans to go and do exciting things are normal. It's about spending Your time doing the most varied, exciting and fun activities possible rather than shunning All of these experiences in order to focus on the close connection with other people. But the
 Dark side of this is that they never get to experience that exhilarating joy of a new experience or get to share this excitement with others in conversation. They seem to have a reduced capacity to enjoy the highs of experiences as well as the lows.

Bluntness in the NE is also refreshing- you will rest assured knowing if somebody likes something
 you're doing or if they don't like something you are doing. Why? Because EVERYTHING is said.
Everything that would normally delivered non-verbally in the midwest is delivered through speech, 
Even an “um” before pausing to keep the other person from jumping in because there is still
 something he wants to say. In the midwest, that “um” wouldn't be there because there isn't that
 anxiety about somebody interrupting.

Northeast: A society focused like a laser on success and competing in the market and
punctuality and speed and efficiency. We were raised to be worker bees and a huge focus on
 productivity and being a productive member of society, using your time productively, etc.
 Fun happens not through fooling around, but fun is the feeling you get after accomplishing
 something great that you worked very hard for. Success is that happiness you feel because
 you have done good work. Getting the “timing” right a preoccupation- very concerned with
 particulars. A commitment made is a commitment kept. If you just blow it off, that's a 
BIG DEAL- possibly a friendship ending mistake. Same thing with a failure to respond to an email or a phone call...HUGE mistake.



1.
Fundamental Northeastern concept: The speedily completed conversational unit
Fundamental Midwestern concept: The sincere and nice connection with the other person

2.
Northeastern: reassurance through many fast, blunt and sometimes superficial/flippant 
Words. You do EVERYTHING using fast-tempo words. The goal is to make conversational 
unit go smoothly- also to make the gaps between units quick and smooth. Also to get across a shared cool and pleasant surface attitude.
Midwestern: reassurance through a long, slow, low-stress, sincere, kind engagement with 
full attention.

3.
NE: Saying everything you mean and then some.
MW: Only saying things that are true 
And withholding/implying a lot of true opinions- a lack of bluntness and honest personal 
feedback with the person they are actually WITH and a tendency to talk behind their back 
Later. (MW respond to NE bluntness such as criticism with “niceness”, and then may 
shun them and never talk to them again)

4.
NE: People give other people direct commands as if they're in the military.
MW: If people 
want something done they will just strongly imply it.

5.
NE:Bluntness and aggressiveness in conversation a valued trait. NE sometimes pushy and want to spend time with you and when you say you are busy they'll, "Busy? Doing what? What do you have to do? It's a long day!" And they won't take the hint unless you actually say it explicitly.
MW: Tact and 
Niceness valued

6.
Midwest: derives humor from breaking rules of sophistication or proper decorum in
 places, such as a restaurant.
NE: Think this is embarrassing and not funny at all.

7.
MW: Being “nice” to people>striving for and achieving the best possible result. Never reach anywhere near the limits of human potential.
NE: Striving for and achieving the best possible result>being “nice” to people. EVERYBODY in the
Northeast understands that when somebody is cracking down they are not being personally mean, 
but are intent on getting a particular result because achieving that result makes life exhilarating and 
Benefits mankind at large. Those stern looks and stern words, lack of engagement, and extremely tight discipline are cause for excitement, not stress, Because it telegraphs to everybody that we're involved with serious business now and doing something of great import. Life has valleys and lows, but it has great peaks and soaring excitement, too. Bluntness saves an incredible amount of time. Sternness and this apparent "meanness" doesn't faze us at all.

8.
NE: We aren't allowed to show 100% engagement with somebody. Might be made fun of as “creepy”
 for looking so interested in/respectful of what they are saying. Words are cheap; why are you
 treating my every word like they're so precious? Showing superficial interest and smiles and waves
 and small talk and so forth is normal. But “pretending” to be so interested in every word I'm saying
 is just disingenuous.
MW: They aren't allowed to get excited about THINGS, PLACES, IDEAS, or AMBITIONS, SPECIAL EVENTS, ACCOMPLISHMENTS, or RECOGNITION FOR ACCOMPLISHMENTS. They aren't allowed to “sound” excited about it or display energetic/excited/curious body language. They might make fun of you or at least think you were funny for showing so much 
Excitement. The dark side is that they lack the ability to truly GENERATE excitement or sound passionate about any of the issues, and so lack the ability to have an edge and are afraid when they confront somebody who does have an edge and who hasn't been neutralized.

BEHAVIORS
1.
Walking fast or moving quickly or hurrying.

MW: Tightly wound, impatient, kind of an idiot for moving so fast, thinks he's better than me.
NE: Respect the fact that he's in a hurry. People who move quicker get a lot more done.

2.
Talking in a plain, straightforward way.

MW: Our way of being down to earth-derive pleasure and humor from
 boiling things down to essential concepts in casual
 conversation- shows you know what's up
NE: Unsophisticated.

3.
Making abstract statements and letting them hang.

MW: People don't talk like this- it's not cool or clever. How am I supposed to respond to that?
Is that a joke? Why did he put me on the spot like that? Not down to earth. Thinks he's better.
NE: Respond as quickly as possible to complete the conversational unit. And actually, the abstract 
statement itself was probably made as an anxious response driven by not having anything 
specific to say, but being aware that a certain amount of time has elapsed since the completion 
of the last conversational unit, and not knowing what to say next is not cool.
MW: 
Who cares about trying to grasp at straws and thinking about what to say next? How am I 
supposed to respond to that meaningless statement (meaningless for our conversation, that is-
 it could be an interesting philosophical point, but that's not how you approach a philosophical 
discussion, is simply making a quick abstract statement and letting it hang). I'm in no hurry and 
I won't judge you for not knowing what to say next. Why not turn that brainpower to a different 
use- focusing on me, giving me your full attention and respect, and being considerate enough of 
me to actually say something that I can respond to without being completely at a loss for how 
what you said has any relevance to our conversation.

4.
Making flippant statements and lots of surface smiles and quickly returning 
another person's facial expressions.

MW: Why is he putting on a big show? Must not like me- must 
obviously be hiding his true feelings.
NE: Casual and cool- this is a determinant of social value and understanding. Necessary currency.

5.
Abruptly ending a conversation, as if with a couple words and a huge period.

MW: Extremely rude.
NE: Necessary currency. A normal part of body language shorthand indicating 
end of a conversation and mutually understood. They'll understand you're busy.

6.
Not abruptly ending a conversation.

MW: Normal. What's the hurry?
NE: Why are you leaving me hanging? Creates discomfort that you haven't stepped in and
 helped them abruptly close that unit of conversation.

7.
Responding quickly and aggressively to everything that is said. Readiness to do so
 at all times by second nature, even unexpectedly.

MW: How weird and stressed out. I'm in no hurry and I won't judge you for not filling in every single
 little pause in the conversation. In fact, I'll probably think more of you if you don't. Don't put
 me on the spot like that. What's the matter with you?
NE: Necessary currency. Failure to execute results in wounded looks in the eyes and a rapid 
and definitive end To the conversational unit- completing this gives them comfort. This is 
THE way that they stay conversationally grounded
- conditioned to hurl back the next sentence like a dog responding to a dinner bell. To avoid
 throwing the ball back is a refusal to help the other person continue the conversation and 
save face- a rude and mean thing to do (I take it personally in the same way as a midwesterner
 would take bluntness and a quick, abrupt “cut” (in a conversation or out of it) personally. If 
you don't do this, then you are terrible at functioning in society and not a friendly person.

8.
Leaving time in between comments and not responding to all of them.

MW: Keeping it real, thinking before speaking, speaking 
only when necessary, smart, taciturn culture.
NE: An almost unforgivable offense. Pretentious. He must not like me 
at all to make me so uncomfortable and so “on the spot”. A pause is not respectful- it's insulting
 and makes you socially awkward.

9.
body language- non verbal cues that indicate bad mood or hiding something 
(anything) or lack of eye contact, or a disinterested, “casual” look directly before or after 
conversation, or looking away, or anxious or tense. Surface politeness on top of it to cover it.

MW: Unforgivable. You are a true "*******". Given the opportunity, you 
would treat somebody badly if you could get away with it. It is cool to 
shun this kind of behavior.
NE: Not important at all, so normal that this is not even picked up on.

10.
talking about church

MW: Normal, nothing to even consider.
NE: You're showing off that you think you're better than us. Socially very weird to mention it.

11.
talking about money or prizes or awards or famous people met or something
 you accomplished

MW: Social value goes down- you must not be very smart. Who are
 you trying to impress anyway? Are you trying to be better than me?
NE: Give him lots of praise and recognition and show interest in the great things he has done.

12.
saying that you don't know something or that you're not very good at something

MW: humorous and a bit of conversational shorthand
- an understanding that when people say, “It's no 
big deal” or “I didn't work that hard on it”, they may 
have worked 14 consecutive hours on it. “Do but 
don't tell- let the work speak for itself” is the philosophy. 
Don't ever give the person the impression you think you
 are better than them. A source of pleasure, humor, and comfort.
NE: Think that you really are ignorant and really don't know what you're talking about.

13.
Sarcasm and cynicism and irony

MW: Why are you being so negative? There's nothing funny about nastiness. Sarcasm the 
language of the devil.
NE: Casual and cool- this is a determinant of social value and understanding. Also a side effect
 of total bluntness. Also a source of lots of humor.

14.
Earnestness, open eye contact, the sincere “connection”, giving full attention 
to the other person, “church face” as you give their words respect, not hiding
 anything or communicating any hostility or disinterest. Readiness to do so
 at all times by second nature, even unexpectedly.

MW: ***Necessary currency. Failure to properly execute results in censorious coughs and
 wounded, hurt looks in the eyes and turning to another person to get that connection again-
this comforts them.
(the weakness here is while the northeasterner's method of regaining
 comfort is self-sufficient because he can simply end the conversational unit and walk away
 rapidly to feel “right” again- this is the normal procedure anyway), the midwesterner is locked into 
having to seek this connection from somebody else. Therefore when they are in an 
unfamiliar place alone and don't have that comforting connection, they feel lost and confused
 and they are not grounded).

NE: Cheesy and overbearing and open for ridicule- also, he must not like me because he's not smiling
 and he's being excessively formal and showing me so much attention and not being “real” with me
- does he think he's better than me? He must not like me if he's not willing to talk to me on my own
Level. It's not cool to act like you're taking people that seriously. They're just people. This kind
 of open earnestness is considered an outdated “Gee Wally” kind of attitude not at all the same
 as the rapid, “cool” flippancy which involves not taking the person that seriously. If anything the 
effect is irrelevant because making and breaking full engagement with human beings is not a focus-
That is why if you have a mild connection with someone (for instance, you are walking past them
 and notice them) and are in a nasty mood, the effect in the Northeast is largely irrelevant, 
where in the midwest not only is the engagement a point of focus, but so is the degree of 
engagement and the content being communicated during the engagement. This “bad” content 
being communicated is taken very personally by the midwesterner, because from the time they 
were young the importance and meaning of engagements was hammered into them. The 
content communicated by the northeasterner, though, is completely unintentional. And if you 
make an engagement with a midwesterner and it has bad content in it and then you try and 
cover it up, then you are an “*******.” It is your RESPONSIBILITY as a member of society 
to cover up your ill will and hostility so well that it appears sincere and there is no hostility 
being communicated during everyday engagements and never the appearance of hiding anything 
in your true self, whether it is walking past someone on the street or talking to the cashier at the 
store. If you don't do this then you had terrible parents and you are terrible at functioning in society.

One specific thing done to establish comfort in the northeast which was bred into me growing 
up (looking at somebody for a couple seconds with the connection and then deliberately breaking it as you look away disinterestedly) is the same thing that so offends Midwesterners when you do the same.

15.
Using manners and saying “and you?” sir, ma'am

MW: His parents raised him correctly.
NE: Stilted and unnecessary and outdated and 
kind of corny- must be a hard-core conservative.

16.
dressing nicely

MW: He's a “sir” to be treated with extra respect.
NE: Bemusement and sometimes ridicule. Must be a conservative.

17.
holding doors open for women

MW: shows you are intelligent
NE: Patronizing, outdated, kind of stilted- is this guy for real? 
Must be a conservative.

18.
Somebody quickly breaks the connection when in a conversation to do
 something else that they have to do, then they come back to the conversation

MW: Rude and selfish and offensive.
NE: Normal and “casual”. Casual=cool. A natural break.

19.
interrupting, finishing another persons' sentence.

MW: Cool it, boy. Why not just wait until I'm done speaking. Not cool conversationally to 
jump in like that when I'm clearly not done saying what I was going to say.
NE: The other person stopping is a way to say, help! It's a plea. “I need to finish this unit.”
 When they are struggling to find the right word, you realize it makes them look uncool and so you kindly step in, save them from the “awkwardness”, and complete the unit.
MW: Actually, there's no shame at all in 
pausing in order to find the right word. The right thing to do is encourage them
 nonverbally, by nodding perhaps- if anything.

20.
how conversations are executed

MW: : : == == === === ==== ==== ===== 
===== ===== ===== ==== ==== 
=== === == == 
(no abrupt and artificial ending, instead, 
reaffirm that relaxed, sincere connection and 
walk away).
NE: :::::: (call, response, call response, end of unit.
 Interfering with that unit or trying to communicate
 Meaningful emotion about how you are liking the
 person or how you are liking the conversation in
 that unit is BAD. Cooly pause, maybe nodding,
 maybe smiling, maybe frowning. THIS is where
 you communicate how the conversation is going 
and open up and be real- in between the units. 
 :: :::: ::::: ::::: ::::: :: (he turns to go but then 
Remembers something) :::::::::: ::: :::: ::: : :

21.
telling rather than showing someone what you actually think about them, 
Whether it's “I think you're a wonderful human being” or “I don't like you.”

MW: unthinkable on the bad side, cheesy and insincere on the good, don't know how to react.
 Feelings about somebody are shown and implied, so this outright declaration of words
 is difficult to take seriously.
NE: A wonderful, breezy compliment or a moment of commendable “honesty” and “realness” and 
“self-expression.” Since everybody is truly blunt, the words are taken at face value. Self-expression
 is done explicitly through words rather than implicitly through actions, words that bely certain 
deeper attitudes, and words omitted or left unsaid.

22.
acting impatient, walking around somebody, acting like you've got someplace to
 go or that you want to end the conversation without telling the 
other person what it is and apologizing

MW: I'll let you go, but privately I think you're extremely 
Rude and inconsiderate.
NE: Normal, don't give it a second thought.

23.
Calm and relaxed and unhurried.

MW: Normal. Never be impatient, ever.
NE: Rude and inconsiderate. I have someplace to be! Out with it! Come on! Say something! Finish
 the unit!

24.
bluntness

MW: Completely alarming. You must really dislike me and I take what you're saying
 personally- I am personally hurt. Likewise, when I have 
been nice and bottled up for long enough and taken this 
abuse for long enough, when my top finally blows off and 
I speak bluntly to criticize, I really mean what I'm saying 
and I'm directing it personally right at you as a person.
NE: Most efficient. Least hypocritical. Worthy of lots and lots of respect. No offense intended, none taken.

25.
ignoring manners

MW: You closed the door in my face or reached across me at the dinner table for a bowl, and I could tell you meant
 it personally. What an *******.
NE: Casual and cool- this is a determinant of social value and understanding. Not taking manners
 seriously is a sign of casualness and cool and social progress that we have developed beyond
 “stifling” and “artificial” manners. That was so hypocritical. By leaving out manners this is our
 way of being more down to earth and “real”. By using all these manners, you are NOT being
 down to earth- you think you're better than us.

26.
a lack of bluntness and implying subtly what needs to happen.
MW: It's incumbent on the person I'm talking to to understand
 what I am implying and go do it. Since good people 
have a good work ethic and a good set of values, this is all that needs to be said.
NE: I don't take you seriously at all. You are a weak leader. You are unable or unwilling 
to lay down the law. You are much too soft. I don't feel any compelling reason to do 
What you're telling me to do. What are you going to do to me? Give me a sad look? 
That doesn't work with me- that doesn't make me feel any guilt or any lapse of 
responsibility on my part. Only stern, matter-of-fact words and stern, blunt delivery 
show me you mean business. Lack of bluntness=
Complete failure to communicate what you want. You can't count on people implicitly understanding
 what you ACTUALLY want in this day an age- they are not driven by those old morals and work
 ethics. You have to spell it out, lay it out like a dictator. Otherwise, if you're all nice to them and
 suddenly you fire them, they will feel resentful and cheated because you were never straightforward
 with them, you were never blunt with them. The midwesterner would say, “I shouldn't have to be. 
If I have to spell it out how to be a decent person in my organization, that's not somebody I would
 want working here to begin with.”

27.
somebody says something to me like small talk.

MW: He wants to engage me. I need to finish what
 I'm doing, set it down, and turn to give him my 
Undivided attention.
NE: Snap to it! Respond immediately- throw it right back at them. Also, you may continue working. After 
All, if you always stopped working or doing what you were doing every single little time that somebody 
Talked to you to give them your full attention, you would never get anything done.
MW 
comeback: That's why you don't Pester someone and keep trying to talk to them if they are 
obviously working or otherwise occupied And they have not indicated through body language 
A desire to engage right now. To do so would be Uncourteous and impolite. This is also why 
So much fluff and mindless gabbing and endless words is not cool.
NE: Yes, it is cool. It's 
Called, “Completing the conversational unit” as quickly, snappily, and wittily as possible. That's cool!
MW: What conversational unit? Either you are engaging in a conversation or you are not. 
It is stupid to treat people like trash and have the conversation anyway when you are not engaged.
NE: But it is second nature to us to complete these units while we are doing other things, 
like breathing out and breathing in. We NEVER sit down for protracted discussions in complete 
sentences and waiting each others' turn and reflecting on what the other person
 is saying and weighing their degree of engagement (how much attention they are giving you). These 
quick bits of conversational grammar, these units, are the only way we know how to communicate. 
 And speed is of the essence! The better you are, the more you know all the right things to say in 
response to ANYTHING the other person could throw at you and never leave the other person hanging. 
I don't care if you actually believe 100% in what you're saying or even demonstrate 100% belief in 
what you are saying, but volley back and forth and complete the unit appropriately! Get the good mood across! That is the sign of 
Social intelligence. MW: No, the measure of social intelligence is to never give less than 100% 
Engagement when you are in a conversation and to not be an *******

28.
A girl comes up to talk to a boy and flirt with him.

MW: How forward.
NE: how pleasant/normal

29.
starting a conversation by saying, “Hi, it's Joe and I'm trying to meet new people today!”

MW: why not start it by casually pointing something out in the environment and gradually easing more
 and more into it? That's the way you do conversations. You don't start a conversation with an
 exclamation point that way. What are you, trying to be showy and flashy like you're better than me?
NE: how fun and cool. This is how you're supposed to start a conversation. If you just pick 
something in the environment and then gradually talk about more and more personal things, 
that seems very devious and un-blunt, as if you lack the confidence to just say things outright. 
This goes for dating especially.

-----------
And a couple final observations:

Northeasterners much more likely to wave at you, smile while you're talking, and
being concerned with outward politeness and putting up a nice front. If you put
up the right front and put a lot of effort into returning friendly gestures and facial expressions
and verbal exclamations, regardless of your mood, then you are a good and friendly person.
After all, why would we judge you on something you can't control? Also more likely to start
a happy back-and-forth conversation with a total stranger and ask them directly, where do you live,
what do you do for fun, etc.

And northeastern women generally much more physically attractive, better dressed, and understand the concept of flirting just for the hell of it and casual, fun dating.

So, does anybody else have any other differences to add? I think this pretty much sums it up and the differences are much more stark and fundamental than most people realize.

I'm from the Midwest, so I'll be polite. Thanks, so much, for the laugh.
 
Old 07-19-2012, 04:50 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
5,950 posts, read 7,316,956 times
Reputation: 3731
Someone must have a little free time.
 
Old 07-19-2012, 06:31 PM
 
16 posts, read 53,222 times
Reputation: 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by bradjl2009 View Post
Someone must have a little free time.
Actually these are just notes I've typed from my own personal observations, so that I can go back and forth and be accepted in each format. I just thought I'd put them online for other people to look at.

I am aware that the whole midwest isn't like Columbus and the whole northeast isn't like New Hampshire. My point is that the difference between the two regions is a lot starker than people realize.
 
Old 07-19-2012, 06:33 PM
 
16 posts, read 53,222 times
Reputation: 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by NowInWI View Post
I'm from the Midwest, so I'll be polite. Thanks, so much, for the laugh.
Glad you found it funny. We in the northeast find midwesterners funny too
 
Old 07-19-2012, 06:34 PM
 
2,601 posts, read 4,068,969 times
Reputation: 2275
Quote:
Originally Posted by josephconrad View Post
Actually these are just notes I've typed from my own personal observations, so that I can go back and forth and be accepted in each format. I just thought I'd put them online for other people to look at.

I am aware that the whole midwest isn't like Columbus and the whole northeast isn't like New Hampshire. My point is that the difference between the two regions is a lot starker than people realize.
Your generalizations are hilarious - seriously. Who do you think you are, speaking for me, or anyone else, for that matter? Don't assume you know how I think, what my reactions are, and that I'm going to sit back and agree with you. I'm not being defensive, I'm being real. Your assumptions are ridiculous, josephconrad.
 
Old 07-19-2012, 06:54 PM
 
2,601 posts, read 4,068,969 times
Reputation: 2275
There are posters (and posers) on this forum, who take delight in denigrating an entire region of people, based simply on their geographical location. Do these people not realize that by trying to sound so wordly and better than, the effect is actually just the opposite. It makes them sound narrow-minded and a little simple..stereotyping is never good or smart. When it's done with such relish, it makes them sound even more narrow-minded and simple.

I'm annoyed by these silly attempts to denigrate, but am also amused at how these people really do think they're right. I hope they're not yet out of high school, because this really is just bullying, plain and simple.
 
Old 07-19-2012, 07:09 PM
 
Location: West Michigan
3,072 posts, read 5,446,091 times
Reputation: 4294
Quote:
Originally Posted by josephconrad View Post
I was raised in the northeast since I was 8. I moved to Columbus, OH for school in 2008 and have now spent about 5 years here (sometimes flying back home for a few days). I still do not fit in, in the midwest. I'm not saying I side with the northeast on every issue- on some points, I side with the midwest sometimes. But I think the northeast has a definite edge. Here is my analysis.

I've been to the Northeast, and the people there are not nearly as big of douchebags as you make them out to be.
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