Sunday, January 11, 2004

1st Class City with a 3rd Class Attitude

I do believe that Philadelphia is one of the top X cities in the country (we can quibble about X). Sure, it has its problems - some more, some less than other urban areas - but overall I think it's a better place to live than many comparable places. I prefer it to Boston. I prefer it to Chicago. Sure, it isn't New York, but what is? Maybe San Francisco has some additional charms, but wow is it expensive.

The Philly economy - both in the city itself and even moreso in the 'burbs - is really a white collar economy. Still, it has a real blue collar attitude. Blue collar with a bit of extra money. This is both good and bad, but one way it manifests itself is in the city's 3rd class attitude.

Places with 1st class attitudes - they know they're the best, they don't bother even worrying about the issue, and know everywhere else sucks.

2nd class attitudes - they desperately cling to the notion that they're the best, and continually prove this wrong by desperately trying to convince everyone of that non-fact.

3rd class attitude - we suck, and we know it.

Philly ain't the best city in the world, but given the cost of living, location, amenities, cultural offerings, etc... it's pretty damn good. Better, as I said, than comparable places like Boston and Chicago. Still, for better or for worse the city of brotherly love isn't exactly filled with an overabundance of self-love. It's a rather insecure place.

So, I have to say, a little ego improvement, no matter what the cause, is a breath of fresh air.