NOVA is the most unfriendly avoiding place I've ever lived (Chesapeake: military, shops)
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Eggman, I'm stunned that any woman would respond to your gesture of courtesy with such hostility. To have a door held open for you is NOT an assault on anyone's autonomy or ability...GEEZ! I admire your restraint as I'm not sure I would have had the constitution to absorb that with much grace.
Like some of the women who have responded to the original poster, I have competed with men in the work place, but like them, I have also teamed with men. I question whether this is an issue between the sexes or an issue of ignorance. I am appreciative toward any man or woman who holds a door for me or extends any courtesy to me. I am new to NOVA and live outside the beltway and have found both men and women to generally be polite here. I will hold a door or offer my seat to anyone who appears to need/want the assistance. Eggman, don't let women who bark such absurdities at you diminish you as a man. These women who claim to be "liberated" when they ask you if their arms look broken seem to me to be enslaved rather than liberated. These notions of somehow being less capable if a someone holds a door open for you are so utterly antiquated. The last time I looked it wasn't 1983 anymore and woman no longer have to act or dress like men to be taken seriously. I'm not saying that there aren't women out there who get passed over or are paid less than a man doing the same job. I know it happens and it's wrong. But these inequities, both real and perceived, have nothing what so ever to do with civility and courtesy or one's ability to open their own door for #&*@'s sake. And for the preservation of men like you I hope that more of us get that straight.
If it counts for anything, there are those of us (women) who feel secure enough in ourselves to pursue our professional and personal ambitions individually and/or in partnership with other men and/or women while still accepting as well as extending civility and consideration to those around us.
As a side note and in response to the original poster, I consider myself to be very fortunate to have had a positive experience since moving here from San Diego via Denver. It is true that I live in a small town (Dominion Valley/Haymarket) and am not regularly found on the Metro (though I have used it several times and had no qualms with it) and perhaps, given the majority voice here, that is for the best. My husband and I are middle aged, no children by choice, are educated and like you Eggman, we tend to be "Old School". I think there is room enough for us, as well as for chivalry. What is the old saying, if you're not part of the solution you're part of the problem? Perhaps you have inspired one person to revive a sliver of chivalry tomorrow or the next day?
As for the man who takes pride in beating folks who are less able to seats on the Metro, wow! Get some help for that anger dude, it will eat you alive.
Originally Posted by TheEggman
As much as I hate to agree [to some extent] ...
I'm an 'old school' fellow when it comes to 'politeness' in general. I smile, wave, nod, open doors, rise when a woman or elder man arrives at the table -- whatever.
If I arrive at a door immediately prior to another person, REGARDLESS of sex, age, infirmity, etc. I will hold the door for them. It's a habit, most people seem to appreciate it and it's no big deal, just a habit.
Last week I made the mistake of opening and holding the door for a woman carrying a baby in one of those 'papoose' slings.
In appreciation she barked at me, "Do my arms look broken a--ho--?"
It took every ounce of self restraint I had to not slam the door on her and toss out a few expletives, many beginning with B, C, and F.
Of course NOW I think of all of the snappy comebacks I COULD have used. ("Sorry mam, I just thought a woman of your age and weight might need some help.")
I can see why people might 'appear' rude and short because they are wrapped up in their own problems, are in a hurry or concentrating on a nagging issue. I'm sure I'm guilty of that myself. What I don't get is when people go out of their way to be mean and spiteful.
Again, this attitude seems to be most common in the 'hustle-bustle' urban areas. I've slowed down to let another driver merge or exit and had the driver behind me lay on his horn, roll down his window, shake his fist and/or flip the bird on several occasions.
I'm sure that 'commute anxiety' doesn't end when these people get out of their cars. They push ahead in lines, run to pack themselves into an already overcrowded elevator, snap at the receptionist when they do get to the office and generally make everyone miserable until they 'settle down.'
That evening they repeat the process, but this time they take it out on family and friends.
OMG(osh)! I can't believe this post has been going on for so long!! Wow! I only read through the first page - I know I need to read what everyone said but I noticed the same thing!!!
I grew up in NoVA & have been living in the South for the past 20 years & am so glad I live in a place where people pass you & say hello, eye contact is made, people smile, talk to you while you wait at the DMV, and wave to you as they pass you in the car!
It's just sad that most people are only transient NoVA residents & I think that adds to the unfriendly, coldness of the area. Because when you get to know your neighbors, you'll see they're not so bad (usually). When we were visiting my mom one time & went into DC, a very nice tourist took our pic in front of the WWII memorial - he could not believe I was from the area! He said he never knew people were actually from NoVA, just that people lived there!
Stay out of the bars/HH though - join a civic club, take night classes at a local college, volunteer. Fairfax County has wonderful rec centers sprinkled throughout NoVA - I miss that.
To the person who wrote that the friendliest people they've met were in Arizona, I used to live in Tucson and thought it had the most absurdly pretentious phony snobs I've met anywhere. Far more so than anyone I've met from Great Falls or Mclean.
I lived in DC as a kid and can attest to the middle class there being absurdly snobby when they've nothing to be snobby about. I also lived in NOVA, but not really exactly since we were living on the Marine base at Quantico. I presently live in the suburbs of Wilmington, Delaware, BTW (where it's reasonably friendly). I was truly in love with Virginia as a kid, however. I sometimes think of moving back there but don't want to be in the kind of snobsville that's been described here, nor in a heavy traffic place. I also don't want to be in more seriously culturally Southern areas of the state. So my question is: where does the suburban DCitis of NOVA start to peter out? Would Fredericksburg be a safe bet for instance? I need to be close to an international airport as I travel frequently to the UK. What would fit the bill of being reasonably close to Dullus, in a quaint but not excessively conservative town and not in a de facto suburb of DC?
Half the people in NOVA are from all these places you claim are "friendly parts". Again I say dont kid yourself, quit watching TV and get out more. Go to a bar, bowling, Dave and Busters. Thats where alot of people go to relax. Or join a club, there are plenty of nice talkative people there.
I hope this is not insensitive?
This is my first post here, and im going to jump right in on this thread. This poster has it right. I was born and raised here. You don't find too many of us "natives" in the area anymore.
Firstly, the area is fairly friendly. Like ANY BIG CITY, theres going to be the rat-racy aspect. Metro? Please, if anyone is looking for friends on the subway, you really do have social problems. Have you taken the metro for anything other than going to / from work? Ive been taking it for 20+ years. I take it to Caps games, DC United games, Redskins games... as well as to and from work. Let me explain a little difference for you. When I take it at times when everyone is going to/ from work, its VASTLY different. When im going to / from a sporting event, its MUCH more lively, friendly, fun, people talking..etc... especially after the events going home. WHY? Because people are not going to work they are going to a fun social event!!!!
Secondly, as has ben pointed out, well over 1/2 of the people HERE, are people who MOVE HERE FROM OTHER PLACES that you some of you claim as friendlier. Stop kidding yourselves!!!!!
Some of the nicest people in the world are people who are actually FROM this area. Most of them have had the good sense to LEAVE though. Much of the undesireable traits of this area have been brought here by OUTSIDERS/NON NATIVES. Further, DC is very much like LA. It can be very fake, pretentious, materialistic..etc. It attracts the same demographic/ personality type (TYPE A), as does LA, however its just a different industry here. Out there, its entertainment, HERE, its law, govt, politics, paper. People go to LA, for the same reasons t hey come here... Money, Power...etc. You wi ll find here people often ask "So what do you do for a living" within the first few minutes of knowing someone. That is a very "DC" question. On the surface, its a pretty benign question.. however....More often than not, that question is more than just a "hey i wanna get to know you better" question. People ask that alot fo times with the intent of trying to figure out your status in the grand power scheme of things here, how much money you make.. and what you could possibly do for them in the future. Its true. people do that all the time here. Remember most of these people who are like the above paragraph, who many here complain about CAME HERE FROM THOSE "FRIENDLY" PLACES that many here talka bout.
I have been to most every "MAJOR" city in the US and Canada, and I can tell you that the DC Metro is really not much different from most places. The FRIENDLIEST city ever is Toronto, ON, Canada. Period. Close behind are Seattle, SF, Vancouver. But even in those cities there is still some of the aspects which this thread discusses. C'mon, they are very large cities! What do you expect? People in large cities are of course going to be vastly different than "mayberry". Please. Yeah, I would definately say to those complaining, to stop kidding yourselves. Try Philly, Boston, even NYC. Talk about cold and unfriendly places, those places rival DC with that, ANY DAY, and the most arrogant by far are NYC and Boston.
If you dislike it so bad, then why not stop complaining and get off your butts and LEAVE. Go back to where you came from. I think its funny, because I say this to most peopel I know who have moved here from all over, and you know what they all say to me? Its better HERE than it was where they came from. Maybe if all the "rude" and "unfriendly people who are HERE FROM OTHER PLACES left, many of the true natives (people born and raised here) would want to come back, or in my case stay.
Naaa, much as I love my home town, I am ready to get out after my 37 years here, but thats mostly because I want to live in a place where even winters are farily warm.
Just remember an old saying... wherever YOU go, there YOU are. Its mostly about what YOU make of it. Its your life no matter where you are, so stop complaining about everyone else and make YOUR life, what YOU want it to be. Trust me, you can do it.
I have lived in Northern VA for the past 9 years and find it to be a very cold and unfriendly place to work and live. Now I don't believe people are this way on purpose but instead so fixated on making money, keeping up with the Joneses and moving up the corporate ladder, they don't seem to have time or interest in the human element. Now I am not doing shabby by any means but I have not let any of my accomplishments or material possessions change how I view the world and more importantly how I view people. Some places in Northern VA are worse than others and Ashburn happens to top the list IMO. How is it possible to live amongst so many people but still feel isolated? Now for those who say "if you dont like it leave", I have been trying to leave for the past 5 years but like everyone else, I have grown accustom to the money and opportunity
I also have to remind myself that I am from the south and it is second nature to be warm to everyone.
We can trade places! I'll go up to NoVA, and you can come down here to Hampton Roads. Talk about your unfriendly people. We have your basic run of the mill unfriendlies, and we have the military unfriendlies who don't seem to socialize with anyone outside their own "type."
I lived in southeast FL 15 years before I was ready to leave and find something new. Here? It was 4.5 years when I got the itch to leave and find something else. NoVA would be great!
Years ago I lived in Lake Ridge for a brief time. There was at least one friendly person in the neighborhood across the street. An interesting person and archeologist. Outside of that, I didn't really run into many others. Weird.
FL_Beaches: Have you found a difference in friendliness between Southeast and Southwest Florida? What is it that you like better about NoVA?
If you wouldn't mind giving a write-up of your comparison between NoVA and Florida, I would be very interested to see it.
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