Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Iowa Makes Ten

Iowa is the tenth state that I have lived in. Considering that I signed a lease Monday night it looks like I could be here more than three months. I count California, Ohio, Missouri, Oklahoma, Kansas, Massachusetts, New Mexico, Colorado, Wisconsin and now Iowa. Wow.

Before I go any farther I have to mention how awesome the Boston Marathon was Monday. I had four friends run and a slew of people who I've met ran it and as far as I know everyone had a fantastic race! (Something about the 16mph tailwind plus the net downhill...)

Anyway, another state, ten states. I'm sitting here in the Dubuque Carnegie-Stout Public Library because I don't have computer Internet access at my apartment yet. It is simply frustrating. Another place to live. More people to meet. Figuring out where the best coffee shop is, figuring out the best running routes, where to order take-out Chinese, going to the DMV to get everything registered in this state, on top of all that I want to spend time with people my own age!

I'm not going to go into how to meet people after college, because I have a number of ideas and I have done things that worked, but it is not as easy as it is in high school and college. At some point people get into a rythum and are not interested in meeting a new person. Perhaps that is one reason people get married, so that they don't have to be alone so often.

I am incredibly thankful for all of the experiences I have had, living in so many different places. I feel that I have a certain point of view on America that few other people have. People are similar everywhere, I mean we are all human. However, the differences, even among Americans can be staggering. A few examples:
  • If you want to strike up a positive conversation in Massachusetts say, "#$%& the Yankees!"
  • In Oklahoma or anywhere around the panhandle, don't wear a cowboy hat unless you have earned it. If you have to wonder if you have earned it, you haven't.
  • In Colorado if you do not do outdoor sports basically all year round you are one of only a few.
  • In Kansas just about no one follows professional sports, they follow college sports.
  • In Wisconsin, there are so many alcoholics. If six drinks are not enough to get you even "buzzed" and you have to go into the double digits to get "drunk" I figure you must be seven feet tall with plenty of muscle or you might have a problem.
  • In Massachusetts, and most of New England, people subconsciously believe that the world drops off somewhere in Pennslyvannia because that is the midwest.
  • In Colorado, no one is origionally from Colorado they all moved there within the last 1-2 generations and have family East of Colorado.
  • In Massachusetts, MIT is just another very good college.
  • In Wisconsin, the heat becomes "unbearable" somewhere around 85 degrees.
  • In New Mexico one summer morning the temperature inside my friend's tent at 8AM was 108 degrees.
  • East of Ohio there are trees everywhere.
  • West of Pennslyvannia there is corn everywhere.
  • Between Colorado and the Pacific Ocean there is mostly dessert. At least, it's land that seems to be trying to become dessert.
  • In Winconsin the cheese and Brats are amazing.
  • On either coast, the seafood is amazing. (Being within like 150 miles of the coast counts as being on the coast in my opinion.)
  • In the middle the steak is simply amazing.
  • Bacon is good everywhere.
  • Iowa has cassinos.
So here I am, without Internet at my apartment, in a new place, lonely, but quite fortunately employed. I suppose this is how life goes.

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