Monday, April 9, 2018

The Clash of Titans

Irony or by intent that the Nashville NFL Team is called the Titans.  As I have said in numerous posts the odd conundrum that exists living in the buckle of the belt of the Bible.   The amount of money generated by tourism and booze is not lost all in the shadow of Churches.  The amount of Churches rival any Starbucks for their presence on every corner and the rising tide of Opioid addiction while struggling once again to allow Medical Marijuana and sale of wine on Sundays. 

Then you have the designation of the "It" City best perpetuated by the starfucking former Mayor who did more than that with her "bodyguard."  Then we have serious sports hysteria with the Predators and the push for Soccer as again sports is the drug we need to generate money and in turn build the City reputation  all while ignoring housing and affordability via wages and job security in a state that is right to work. Funny how sports teams all have unions and representation to secure their jobs.

Of course the public infrastructure system is horrific, from buses to sidewalks/crosswalks to a public transit system that is being sent to the 20% or so who vote in any election and  that has set this city on a tear debating the value of such.  Add to this a public school system that in debt with little explanation or justification from the Director of Schools who is so busy hiring crony's and in turn firing them or doing whatever it takes to prove that notion of the Carpetbagger.

Then you have the medical industry that dominates the city but the public hospital is on life support.  And the health and overall wellness as well as possessing health insurance is again a contradiction. Those who are healthy and less in need possess insurance and that is linked to again Education and Employment, which only 40% possess such jobs that enable this.  The songs sung in Honky Tonk's ring of sad times, bad times, good times, drunk times is another oxymoron with 53% of the population Evangelical. I find that the songs they sing similar be they in the pews or at bar stools very as they very much explain the endless martyrdom and oppressiveness akin to a veil over a Bride's face;  One is never sure if that is to either hide her fear or shock her groom, either way no one is quite a virgin when it comes to the reality of what waits for you at the end of the line in God's country.

I often compare Nashville to Seattle but in reality Seattle has always been a bookend to San Francisco and that is the city in which it has always aspired.  Nashville's bookend is Boston, religious, led by cultural mores, surrounded by schools, a sense of import and history and one divided by class and race in the same way Nashville is.   It is one's family, one's roots and where one is from that dominates the culture.   The way one speaks is the moniker for identity and says to those around you who you are and in turn enables those to judge and in turn label you.  All of this is the same in the South.    It is just again the beverage of choice that marks the difference - Tennessee Whiskey or Irish - the culture of the past is very much the culture of the present.

The West Coast is very much a part of America that has always lived in the moment.  Cities in the West are defined by its people and they define the City.  What once made San Francisco the city of "hip"  is now the City of Tech and the same with Seattle.  But they share a liberal leaning that in turn leads to oversharing, overtalking and pearl clutching.  The Seattle process marked by endless circle jerking and repeating the same talking points that is marked by the infamous Seattle Freeze.  The South too claims to be "nice" or  hospitable but that is simply having manners and avoiding eye contact.  As for Boston I cannot truly comment as I went once and let's just say once was enough.  I could not tell the difference between the weather and the people - cold with a heavy chill.

Outsiders looking in.  West Coast does not tie its identity to teams, they do but not in the way the East and South do.  There are few shops that sell Nativist wear that have the city or state name on them and no one I have ever known calls themselves a "Seattleite" or '"San Fransiscan" they are simply "from" there.   People ask where you went to school as if to determine your value or worth or simply to be curious but I never had any discussion about being an Alumnus of the University of Washington in the same ways they do in other parts of the country. Identity comes from your team, from your school, from your family line and the church you belong.   Truly when it comes to looking at why our country is divided I think you need to simply look at the city and the history and the culture. They are more homogeneous, parochial and conservative than you are led to believe.   Most people in America are very provincial and that is the basic foundation of the American dream but as that dream becomes more tenuous and more fragile it explains why we all hate each other in ways that are like game day.  They are the enemy, they want to win, you want to win and you will do it at great cost as no one wants to be the loser. All of it is much like sports, run by rich white men who make sure the players do what they want when they want and if they take a knee be forewarned that they may Tonya Harding you to the other.

Welcome to the clash of the Titans.  It's game day everyday in America and we are always on offense or defense.  It explains the brain injuries as how else can you stop playing the game.



East-West Culture Clash? Boston, San Francisco See Happiness Differently

By: Stephanie Pappas, LiveScience Senior Writer
Published: 09/18/2012 0

When Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg showed up at a meeting with Wall Street investors in May wearing a hoodie, his sartorial choice sparked a flurry of headlines contrasting Silicon Valley’s laid-back culture with the East Coast’s insistence on formality.

Now, new research finds that this West Coast-East Coast culture clash isn’t just media stereotyping. In fact, people living in the east coast city of Boston closely link their overall life satisfaction with how content they are with their own social status. In San Francisco, residents don’t make the same connection, reflecting a more individualistic, free-to-be-me culture.

“Our ideas about who we are and how we should feel are shaped in quite dramatic ways by our local environment,” said study researcher Victoria Plaut, a social and cultural psychologist at the University of California, Berkeley Law School. Broadly speaking, Plaut told LiveScience, the stereotypes are true: “If you examine the local world, you’ll find that the East is more old and established, and the West is more new and free.”

A tale of two cities

Plaut and her colleagues are interested in how interactions between a person’s environment and their own individual characteristics affect their well-being. While your own personality, education, finances and relationships all make a difference in how happy you are, Plaut said, “they might matter in different ways in different places.” [7 Things That Will Make You Happy]

The researchers wanted to go in-depth, so they picked two cities that are similar on many levels but differ in historical and cultural ways. Boston and San Francisco are both waterfront, politically liberal cities with similar economies and lots of well-educated residents, Plaut said. But while Puritans founded Boston in 1630, San Francisco didn’t boom until the gold rush era of the 1840s, when thousands of hopeful miners flooded California, hoping to get rich quickly.

Even today, the makeup of the cities is different. About 60 percent of Bostonians are natives of Massachusetts, and only 16 percent of city residents are originally from other countries. In San Francisco, 38 percent of residents originally come from California. Nearly a third of San Franciscans are foreign-born.

Tradition vs. freedom

The attitude differences between the Boston metro area and the San Francisco Bay Area could be summed up in the marketing copy, or viewbooks, of the regions’ prominent universities, Plaut and her colleagues wrote online Sept. 13 in the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. Stanford University in California opens its 2009 viewbook with the words, “The wind of freedom blows,” and refers to “forward-looking, forward-thinking people” looking for “the freedom to be themselves.”

Harvard University, on the other hand, opened its 2008 and 2009 viewbook by discussing the school’s “tradition of excellence” since 1636 and talking up the community of students and faculty.

The researchers wanted to find out if this freedom versus tradition schism was widespread in each metro area. First, they surveyed an online sample of Bostonians and San Franciscans, asking them their own perceptions of social norms in their cities. They found Bostonians perceived the culture in Boston to be much more rigid than San Franciscans viewed Bay Area norms.

“Bostonians are more likely than San Franciscans to believe that there are clear expectations for how people should behave in their city,” Plaut said. “Whereas San Franciscans are more likely than Bostonians to believe that in their areas people have the freedom to go their own way.”

Next, the researchers analyzed the “cultural products” of each city — newspaper headlines and the websites of hospitals and venture capital firms. (Health care and venture capital are major industries in both cities.) They found that the Boston Globe refers more often to communities and groups than the San Francisco Chronicle, which favors stories about innovation, creativity and notable individuals. While the Globe might lead with a headline like, “Church Struggles to Keep Its Voice,” the Chronicle might go with “Wheelchair Athlete Sets High Goals.”

Likewise, Boston venture capital firms were more likely to tout their reputation and experience, while San Francisco firms emphasized their pioneering spirit. Accel, a San Francisco firm, epitomized this attitude with marketing copy like, “We partner with entrepreneurs around the world who have unique, breakthrough ideas and the courage to be first.”

Even local hospitals reflected their city attitude. Boston hospitals tried to lure patients with a focus on their facilities, skilled community of physicians and long histories. San Francisco hospitals were more likely to mention alternative medicine and individual patient empowerment.

Happiness differences

Next, Plaut and her colleagues looked beyond the marketing patter to the city residents themselves. They surveyed 3,485 Boston and San Francisco residents about their satisfaction with their finances, family, community, education and work, as well as their overall satisfaction with themselves. In Boston, overall satisfaction was contingent on satisfaction with all five of these factors, while in San Francisco, only work satisfaction was correlated with overall satisfaction.

In another survey, the researchers asked 403 riders of public transportation in Boston (the MBTA) and San Francisco (CalTrain) questions about things that made them happy(daily uplifts) and daily hassles. [7 Thoughts That Are Bad For You]

They found that Bostonians are at their happiest when relieved of daily hassles, especially those related to family and work relations — again emphasizing the community-based nature of the city, Plaut said. In San Francisco, happiness was more closely tied to the number of everyday uplifting experiences a person had.

“The bottom line is that in Boston, people feel the social pressure more than in San Francisco,” Plaut said.

The findings don’t suggest that every Bostonian loves tradition and community while San Franciscans are all wild and free creative types, Plaut said. The differences are on a citywide scale, not an individual one. Nor does the study suggest that one city is happier than the other, just that residents of each city might find their happiness in different ways.

The trend is likely driven both by the cities’ history and natives as well as by outsiders drawn by each town’s reputation, Plaut said.

The findings are useful for understanding how cross-regional interactions — like Zuckerberg’s hoodie incident — can go wrong, Plaut said. They may also matter to businesses trying to break into new markets or move employees from one city to another. Transferring to a city that doesn’t share your values can be very disorienting, Plaut said.

“That can even cause unhappiness and anxiety. It can cause people to experience a lack of belongingness,” she said. “Understanding the source of that disorientation is an important first step in addressing it.”



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