I warned Greg that I would steal his idea of favorite cities, and so I have. The trick is: can I find ten I like? There are several cities I've been to, Houston and Miami for two, that I really despise. Then there are a bunch more, such as Portland, OR; Seattle, WA; Baltimore, MD; and Austin, TX that intrigue me. I picked more than 10 because some of the cities are small, and may not qualify in Greg's mind.
14. Detroit - Yeah, I know it has the second-highest murder rate, after St. Louis, but when I went there in 1998, to visit a friend, I went to the Motown Historical Museum, a bunch of Henry Ford-related exhibits, and got to see a rather desolate Tigers Stadium before it was torn down.
13. Cleveland - When I went in 1998, it was a LOT cleaner than I would have imagined. Loved the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and to be able to see into the Jake, when the city's baseball team used to sell out for the whole season.
12. Boston - Even though I've had some problems there, I enjoy the whole historic Revolutionary War thing. Last there in 1994.
11. Philadelphia - Haven't been there in 25 years, though I went down several times between 1975 and 1981, as a matter of affairs of the heart. I'm a sucker for the Liberty Bell.
10. Concord, NH - A lovely little city that Carol and I visited in 2003, and did the historic touristy thing.
9. Galveston - It's an old rundown city, but I have wonderful memories of waking up at 5 a.m., and watching the tides thunder in towards the piers. Also enjoyed the conference in 1995 tremendously.
8. Madison, WI - Went to a conference there in 1988, organized by Capital City, the comic distributor at the time. There were beautiful little lakes abounding. Reminded me a little of Ithaca, NY, a college town I enjoy visiting.
7. San Diego - A bit of a surprise for me, in that I used to HATE the place, when I'd tool around the place in a car, having no sense of where I was. But since they've installed light rail that goes practically to Tijuana, my respect for the old Spanish charm outweighs the generally conservative political climate (and boring 72 degree meteorological climate). Been there several times - my sister lives in the area - most recently in 2005.
6. New Orleans - I've only been there once, in 1995, but had a grand time with some folks from Michigan. A decadent place; I mean that in a good way.
5. New York City - Considering it's only 150 miles away, I don't go there nearly as often as one would think. As a kid, I was down there all of the time visiting relatives, and family was the motivation for two of my last four visits; another was to see a Broadway show, and the last time was to go to an antiwar demonstration in February 2003. I lived in Jackson Heights, Queens for four months in 1977, and I would take the subway often, just to see where it would take me.
4. Washington, DC - I've been to Washington a lot, once as a kid doing the tourist thing, then several times at demonstrations (antiwar, antinuke, an anniversary of the 1963 March). Most recently in 1998 to take the JEOPARDY! test, to do the tourist thing again - notably the FDR Memorial - and to visit friends.
3. Portland, ME- Carol and I went there in March 1999 and got snowed in. We really enjoyed a movie and lunch place, but generally, it was the whole nautical feel of the place.
2. Savannah, GA - I went to a work conference in 1998 or 1999, and my father drove down from Charlotte, NC and we got to just hang out with a few of my friends, walking around the historic city - easy access by foot to a lot of interesting places, eating good food, and having a great time. My father seriously thought of moving there.
1. San Francisco - Only been there once, with my sister Leslie, in 1987 or 1988, but I remember traveling all over the area on the BART, seeing Chinatown, taking a cable car, and looking down Lombard Street, about which Bill Cosby did a famous routine I used to listen to as a kid: "They make Lombard Street go straight down, but they're not satisfied with you killing yourself that way. They put all these twists and curves in there. Then they put flowers in the road where people have killed themselves [trying to drive down]." Though not in the city, I did get to go to the Oakland Coliseum that year and see the A's play.
I like the area, too. My niece graduated from Berkeley a couple years ago, so some of the family got to hang around there.
I noticed - no surprise - that most of these places are on bodies of water. Must be the Piscean thing.
So, I took one of those online tests and got this:
|American Cities That Best Fit You::|
|60% New York City|
|55% Washington, DC|
Four cities on my list, and one I want to visit. Hmm.