Once again, the Internet has wrought cross-country friendship for Yours Truly. Departing today after a whirlwind Windy City vacation are Seattleites Café Kasey and John Dramatist. Emerald City barista Kasey originally contacted me after visiting a link to my blog. He and actor-boyfriend John were ready for a change of scene and were coming to Chitown to see if the flatland urban shores of Lake Michigan would fit the bill.
This week I took a look at the official visitors websites of my two favorites Midwestern cities: my adopted hometown of Chicago (ChooseChicago); and Ohio’s Queen City, Cincinnati (CincinnatiUSA). In doing so, I found that size is no predictor of marketing ability. Both visitors websites fall flat in the storytelling department, among a host of other faults.
Out of nowhere, my four-month-old blog post about my newfound love for Cincinnati is making the rounds on the Queen City blogosphere. I’m gratified to have helped raise the debate about the real future potential–and current coolness–of my second-favorite Midwestern urb.
This is an epic post, so let me eat my words up front. Despite my pre-trip trepidation to travel to the land of the abandoned subway, as it turned out, Cincinnati is cool. And don’t you know, ex-New Yorker and current Downtown Chicagoan that I am, I half-expect to turn into a pillar of salt for saying so.
Ohio? Why, oh why, oh why-oh? Because Yours Truly needs a break from his breakneck work and blogging schedule, and new friend Jamie needs to go check on things at the Cincinnati abode he ditched eight weeks ago for a new life in Chicago. In fact, in my five years as a Chicagoan, I actually haven’t ventured all that far into the Midwestern hinterland. So God help me now.
One of the things I miss the most about New York City is the palpable presence of a Portuguese community. If Chicago had just one Portuguese restaurant my life would be a lot easier. I certainly never expected to meet the editor of a prominent Portuguese newspaper at a Greektown reception.
Devyn and I are back from our coastal sojourns and it’s official: he wants to move to New York (eventually), and I want to move to San Francisco (yesterday if possible, please). The unbridled density and punishing beauty of SFO are mind boggling. Devyn reminds me San Francisco has earthquakes. Well, NYC has terrorist attacks. And unlike terrorists, the earthquakes aren’t actually trying to kill you
Gone off to San Francisco for the weekend, while Devyn goes off to spend some quality time with his best friend in New York. Our separate trips peg well our common proclivities. We both live in Chicago, the third-most densely settled city in America. Where do we go to get away from it all? The most and second-most densely settled cities in America.
Today, Yours Truly leaves with Devyn for three days in Sacramento, CA. He’s going to visit his parents. I’m going to meet them for the first time. Wish me luck.