Discuss culture, living, traveling, relocating, dating or anything related to North America. For those looking to relocate within the US or Canada, discuss your experiences and pros/cons of each domestic region.
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I'm visiting a client in Greenwood, South Carolina right now. It's a town of 22,000, adult gender ratio of 100 women to 82.5 males, there's a local university called Lander University with student population of about 3,000, gender ratio of 67%-70% female : 30%-33% male. The university has an active foreign student program with students from 16 countries. Local high schools have study abroad programs in Japan.
Per capita income here is $14,000'ish, and 25% of the population is under poverty line. Solid blue-collar community with mainly manufacutring jobs.
Sounds fantastic on paper. But I wonder how the local guys stuck there feel about the dating scene. If you make it to an area watering hole or two, perhaps you can strike-up a few conversations to gauge the on the ground vibe. Careful though not to come across to cocky or anything. I remember reading about Steve Buscemi and Vince Vaughn getting seriously attacked in that neck of the woods (well North Carolina actually) 10 years ago by some apparently jealous guys.
It would be good to hear about some US success stories on this site. But I suppose those types of guys have no reason to be on here.
...this is the deep south, they don't take rude people well. Popular TV show here is "American rifleman". Commercials advertise revolvers w/extended cylinder that can fire .410 shotgun shells. ;p There's 2,000 college girls down the street if anyone is interested, but I wouldn't recommend being rude to the locals.
1. Speaking of the deep south and guns, this campaign add by a candidate for Alabama Ag Commissioner says it all: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jU7fhIO7DG0
2. My dad is an investor and board member at a small bank in southern Alabama - half the board is comprised of locals, the other half Yanks. After an annual meeting a few years ago, one of the local board members hosted some of the northerners to his old style plantation home for drinks and dinner. When his wife met them, she offered to show them the 'well' in the back yard. When they heard this, they were shocked and replied, "do you really have a 'whale' in your back yard. They went back and forth like that for a couple minutes until she took them out to show them. As soon as they saw it, they all did their best to stay composed and control their laughter. The hosts never caught on but it became a running inside joke with the northern directors. From some of the stories my parents have told me, it sounds the Midwest, in many ways, has a larger cultural divide with the deep South than it has with many parts of Canada.
D@mn, wish we had more pro-gun politicians in California! Man when Obama was elected, the folks here thought we gonna ban guns so everyone made a mad dash for the nearest gun store. I couldn't buy gunpowder because the store was sold out for weeks. >_>
I spent about a week in SC and chatted with folks at work, in restaurants, stores, airport, etc. People were polite and friendly, and I was surprised to find that they had several transplants from West Virginia because SC had jobs. Folks from West Virginia complained about the local food (fried chicken, fish, "Texas toast", and collared greens). Seems that they think Appalachian cuisine is better than South Carolina's local fare. The factory had multiple shifts and I noticed people working late shift bring their kids and leave them unsupervised at the cafeteria to play and watch TV. At work, in restaurant, at airport, etc. the parents seem more relaxed about strangers chatting and playing with their children.
I asked a couple locals about the cultural difference and how they're more relaxed with their kids in SC vs. CA. I was told that there was only so many roads coming in and out of Greenwood, and last time some New Yorkers came down to rob people, they simply sealed the roads and caught them quickly. They have the mentality that criminals from the bottom of the society from the north (they politely refrained from using the word "yanks"), and if they happen to see one, they'd chase them with their guns from one end of the town to the other. Then everyone at the table took out their concealed weapon permit and showed it to me proudly. @_@ (you had to pass an exam to get it) Even the Vietnamese guy at the table had one!
Believe it or not, I found a French restaurant in town! IMO the chef's cooking is acceptable but not exceptional. But his plating is done very well. As the only French chef in town, whatever he cooks is considered gourmet by the locals. He's the only chef in town if you want duck confit & osso buco. Back in France he probably wouldn't have been rated as highly, but he is certainly "happier abroad" in South Carolina with pretty Southern blond wife and owner of the most prestigious restaurant in town.
In contrast, we have a rather grumpy & balding Frenchmen in Laguna Beach who runs a bakery. In his mind, his croissants and cafÃ© au lait is far superior to the sewage water they serve at Starbucks. However, by local standards his quality is probably just above average and not exceptional. He doesn't feel special or apperciated, so the guy is grumpy all the time. Read the reviews here, then read the filtered reviews:
Tourist will never fall short of things to do in Greenwood. The uptown features many local restaurants, several shopping arcades, and an exciting array of annual events. The city has many historical places tourists can visit during their leisure time. The town also has many libraries which book lovers will enjoy.......
i would like to visit the place.
There are plenty of touristy towns like that in America. They have nice bookstores, museums, coffee shops, candy factories, souvenir stores, etc. and are good for a walk. But if you stop and talk to any hot girl, she will make polite small talk and that's it. Nothing dramatic like they show in the movies. And if you ask them out or try to get their contact info, they will say, "Thanks but I got a boyfriend". So you have to suppress your desires while visiting that nice town, masturbate in your hotel room, and suck it up. Very typical. All you can do is enjoy the commercial parts of it, or talk to old timers, who will talk to anyone.
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"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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10 Things I Learned About the South
by Gavin McInnes
March 18, 2011
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In 1831, Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville came to America. Four years later, he published an outsiderâ€™s perspective of the culture that remained the gold standard for exactly 176 years. Timeâ€™s up, Alex. Iâ€™m an Englishman born to Scottish parents and raised in French Canada, and after four days in a tiny town called Abbeville, South Carolina, I am ready to update the Frenchmanâ€™s dated tome. Here are ten things I learned during my sojourn.
1. THEYâ€™RE NOT RACIST
The outside worldâ€™s view of the South is that theyâ€™re a bunch of nigger-hating rednecks, but the climate there is more â€œLetâ€™s agree to disagreeâ€ than â€œYouâ€™re wrong.â€ Blacks have their part of town and their barbershops, and so do the whites. I went to a black nightclub on the outskirts of town called The Peppermint which was an old barn with BBQ out back and was shocked to see blacks rolling joints at the bar like it ainâ€™t no thang. When I asked about cops I was told none had ever been there.
2. OLD GUYS WEAR BELTS AND SUSPENDERS
This seems idiotic at first glance but I tried it and it really works. Suspenders keep your pants up, but they do it by tugging on four parts of your waistline like a pesky puppeteer. The belt acts as a Robin Hood device by equally distributing the suspenderâ€™s pull throughout your entire pant top, keeping them comfortably above the waist with no questions asked. If only someone would teach Americaâ€™s youth this handy trick.
3. THEY HATE SWEARING
Holy f***ing shit do these motherfuckers swear up and down that they donâ€™t like swearing. Any time I wanted to get a conversation going Iâ€™d bring up the topic and the other person would come to life like Iâ€™d put a quarter in them. â€œI do it,â€ theyâ€™d usually start with, â€œbut I ainâ€™t proud of it. And I tell my kids that it ainâ€™t right. Itâ€™s very important the kids know that cussing is wrong.â€ I once had this conversation at a bar with a NO SWEARING sign so big, it almost gave me Touretteâ€™s.
â€œNobody cares who the mayor is, but the high-school football coach is treated like royalty.â€4. CHEATING IS A HUGE DEAL
In Italy and France, cheating on your spouse is about as serious as farting on a plane. Ask a Frenchman why he did it and heâ€™ll say, â€œWell, ma wife, she did not want to feck so I feck someone else. Dis is logical, no?â€ In South Carolina itâ€™s illegal to break up a marriage by fornicating. One mom said to me she was impressed I kept my wedding ring on while traveling. â€œThatâ€™s very noble,â€ she said. â€œMost men wouldnâ€™t do that.â€ I gave up trying to feck her after that.
5. EVERYONE GOES TO CHURCH
When youâ€™re ingratiating yourself with people they seem to have this â€œTalk is cheapâ€ attitude and refuse to take you seriously until you show up at their church on Sunday. I never went because Iâ€™m disingenuous. Turns out their screening process works.
6. THEYâ€™LL GIVE YOU THE SHIRT OFF THEIR BACK
Thereâ€™s one caveat for their unique generosity: You canâ€™t act like youâ€™re better than them. If youâ€™re here from New York to talk about the racist backwards yokels, you better have a getaway car waiting outside. Once youâ€™ve shown some reverence for their culture and some interest in their lives, they have no problem if you walk over to their fridge and fix yourself a sandwich. In fact, they get pissed if you donâ€™t eat.
7. FOOTBALL IS KING
Jesus, people, itâ€™s only a game! When the high-school football team won the state championships, all of Abbeville shut down and ran to the town square to cheer hysterically. Team members created a makeshift parade and drove around in the back of pickup trucks waving their arms in the air like theyâ€™d just won WWIII. Nobody cares who the mayor is, but the high-school football coach is treated like royalty.
8. THEY DONâ€™T OSTRACIZE FREAKS
I met a very eccentric chap named Patrick who didnâ€™t wear shoes and painted elaborate conspiracy theories all over his van. He had a huge beard and drove around the state giving churches a DVD he made about the imminent apocalypse. Everyone knew him and despite his bizarre lifestyle, they all (rich and poor) spoke to him like family. I donâ€™t know if itâ€™s because Iâ€™m hung over, but I almost cried writing that.
9. METH IS THEIR COKE
At any given New York bar, you can be sure a good 5% of the patrons are on coke. They grind their jaws, talk a lot about nothing, and go to the bathroom every ten minutes. The Southâ€™s 5% have golf balls for eyes and consider 6 a.m. to be â€œgettinâ€™ kinda late.â€ Iâ€™m not talking about trailer trash, either. These are middle-class thirtysomethings who have decided coke simply doesnâ€™t provide the gusto required for a good night/day/night of partying.
10. ITâ€™S KID HEAVEN
At a fancy-pants family reunion with at least 100 attendees and a matriarch who looked like Yoda, I met some 12-year-olds who were way cooler than me. I asked them what shows they watch and they said they donâ€™t have time for TV. Instead, they get on their Enduro motorbikes and tear through the forest with .22 rifles on their backs. When they see a rabbit, they stop, blow its head off, and continue on their merry way. One kid had a black eye and I asked him if it was from a fight. â€œNope,â€ he said smiling, â€œI crashed a golf cart and it rolled on top of me.â€
â€œBut we do fight,â€ the first kid interjected, â€œa lot.â€ The fights usually involve one kid marring anotherâ€™s honor, so they meet at an abandoned baseball field to settle it. â€œI like to do it â€™til they say theyâ€™re sorry,â€ he told me with a huge grin.
â€œYouâ€™re not a bully, are you?â€ I asked. â€œYou donâ€™t pick fights for no reason, do you?â€
â€œOh, no,â€ he responded, â€œI only do it when I have to and I only win about half the time.â€ This was the first time in my life Iâ€™ve ever been jealous of a little kid.
In conclusion, it is the dissimilarities and inequalities among men which give rise to the notion of honor. Iâ€™ve been drinking South Carolina moonshine, so I have no idea what that last sentence meant. Also, they really love sweet tea. I left my journey more than enamored with the South and if they ever fix the part where itâ€™s like living in a microwave six months of the year, Iâ€™m hoppinâ€™ over that Mason-Dixon Line like a frog done sat on a firecracker.
I don't know a lot about the south, but I'll tell you one thing: That article is super right!
I don't care what anyone says. I'm moving to the south if I'm ever forced to move domestically.
I happened to be in Virginia for a couple months. During that time, I met some of the nicest people I ever did in the US. I would just take a minute to converse with these people I didn't even know for a month, and the next minute I'm in their room, playing video games, watching TV with 'em, planning convention trips together and looking at the sunset from a balcony. At the time, I'd didn't know humans could EVER be this nice! In the north, people are cold to you, even if you strike it up with them.
Of course, like anywhere in the US, you gotta have some social links. But when you do, you can meet lots of people with little effort. You can make friends outta anybody down there. lol
People would just throw food from their fridge at me(figuratively speaking) if I ever told them I was a little hungry. Unfortunately, I didn't have much time to get with the girls.
Southerners are super cool(based on my limited experience).
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