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Old 02-13-2010, 08:46 PM
 
1,030 posts, read 3,106,139 times
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I was born, and raised in Wilmington, DE.

I've lived in Philly for the past 3-4 years.

Being a traveling insurance broker, I have been working in Lehigh and Northampton counties lately.

Although Allentown is nice, I have to say that the area in general seems to have very untrusting, skeptical people. It's a shame, because almost every other city in PA I've worked in (I don't work in Philly or Chester,) the people have been nice and friendly, and welcoming.

I have been working in Bethlehem, the Allentown Suburbs, and Easton, and the people there seem to be real "tough" people.

My question is: Has the Lehigh Valley always been like this, or is this a recent change? I realize that ABE is bigger than Reading, Pottstown, Lancaster, etc, but are these urban bi-products of Allentown itself, or is it the combined influence of Philadelphians and New Yorkers?

I'm not downing Lehigh, but I just would have assumed the people were a little more laid back, and friendly than they are, considering how far they are from Philly and New York.

Wilmington, for example, has the same "tough" attitudes, and lots of untrusting people, but I always accounted that to the point that it is directly connected to Philadelphia by dense suburbs.

To explain what I mean, if you go to a Reading suburb, or a Lancaster suburb, the people walk around with smiles, and hold doors, etc.. Allentown and vicinity I see more of the frowns and chips on shoulders like I would see down in Philly or in NYC.

Also, I do seem to sense a ton of New Yorkers in the area. I take it that could be the culprit. What do you guys think?
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Old 02-13-2010, 09:43 PM
 
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I haven't encountered that attitude at all but maybe it's my smallish town of Coopersburg. I've never lived in such a friendly neighborhood and when I go to any store in town I sometimes want to go incognito because I will for sure run into someone I know and wind up talking. At the library where I work, I have great fun talking to patrons all day. Maybe you need to get out of the city's.

BTW, I too was born in Wilmington - but after a short stint in New Castle, grew up in lower, slower Delaware.
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Old 02-13-2010, 10:31 PM
 
Location: On the Rails in Northern NJ
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The Lehigh Valley seems to have depressed and sad ppl along side tough ppl , ive never seen anything like in SE or NE PA , its unique to that area. People almost never say "hi" to each other or smile. Allentown seems to have a unity problem , people don't really mix well. Bethlehem has it , but on a smaller scale, I guess its a city layout , its not layed out to unify ppl , but separate them. With Easton , I don't understand there problems? Philpsburg across they river is safer , cleaner and friendlier , at least when i visit. The people in Jersey City and Newark are happier then the ppl out there, which should be reversed as most would think.

~Corey
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Old 02-14-2010, 05:24 AM
 
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"Sad ppl along side tough ppl" What the heck does that mean?
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:19 AM
 
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I'm sorry.. I should have changed the title to ABE attitudes. I did not mean to include Coopersburg, or Quakertown, etc.
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:21 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toobusytoday View Post
"Sad ppl along side tough ppl" What the heck does that mean?
He's using "ppl' as an abbreviation for "people." Said better, "there are sad people as well as tough people."
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Old 02-14-2010, 10:53 AM
 
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I think Allentown suffers from a lack of its own culture, but yeah, it seems its always been this way.
it is a tough and gritty place, and the attitudes of it's residents often reflect that.. not a whole lot of community is what i dont like about it, as others have said, there is no fabric that links together its residents. obviously there are exceptions to this, as with anywhere.. but i would say your first impression is pretty accurate.
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Old 02-14-2010, 11:32 AM
 
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Since I don't live in any of the city's I can only give my own impression, but I am a member of an Allentown church and newcomers are not just warmly welcomed but pressed to go out to lunch with us after the service. I just don't get this cold shoulder thing. Maybe I'm just oblivious to it because I talk to anyone and am used to getting a friendly response. As a parent, if you get involved in your child's activities, you will make friends. You join a church you make friends. If you go out to a store, you talk to people. You have to join things to feel a part of a group.

I know that when my husband and I were first married we lived in upstate NY and we had the hardest time making friends. It seemed that everybody already had friends and family and they just didn't feel the need or want to make new friends. When we finally did make some friends it was because they also were new to the area.

John, I knew he meant people for ppl, I just don't get what he's talking about with the "sad and tough people" phrase. Is that just the cold winter talking? This time of year most people feel kind of isolated I think.
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Old 02-14-2010, 04:10 PM
 
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I was surprised to read about Berks County folks as being friendly. Berks County folks are mostly very insular and isolated. They are set in their ways, and if you are different they will not talk to you. To a lesser extent it is like that in Allentown, but not as bad as Berks Co, and also Schukyll Countyl These problems do not exist in Bethlehem, as it is the crown jewel of the Lehigh Valley.
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