Tuesday, October 9, 2007

About city mouse country mouse

I grew up, I am not kidding, near Fitchville, Ohio. Not even IN Fitchville...NEAR Fitchville...and all that implies. We had two neighbors on one side and...a cornfield on the other.
So if extreme ruralness is part of Fitchville's problems, being the wide spot on a well-maintained state highway is one (and not the only one, let me emphasize: I am quite fond of Fitchville) of its assets.
The highway being SR 250. Head north on it, and you hit Sandusky (the lake, shopping and Cedar Point). And you'll cross the Turnpike (among other east/west arteries), which can take you west to Chicago or east to Cleveland. (Going south, you'll hit Ashland, and kind of meander to West Virginia; you might want to head back east, and go to Columbus instead. Nice mall there. OSU. Zoo.).
Anyway, this geography lesson lingering too long, what I mean is: it was easy to get out of Fitchville. And being the child of parents from Cleveland (my dad) and Canton (my mom), bigger cities were a common destination for us.
(And for lots of others--I didn't grow up with anyone who didn't go to Elyria for shopping, or to the stadium or Blossom for a concert, etc.)
Thank God.
When I came to work in Huntington, I was rather stunned to met these kind of people:
People who don't leave Huntington, and don't want to.
(I always have to take a deep breath when I think about that.)
Because I know people who are SCARED OF FORT WAYNE.
Yes. Indeed. People frightened to drive into Fort Wayne, Indiana.
The City of Churches. (Lots of them.) The City that Saved Itself. (Several floods, most notably the one in 1982, which President Reagan attended.) The Nice Place to Raise Kids. (Any parent.) Former All-American City. (Not this year, though.)
I have never been frightened of Fort Wayne (well, physically, anyway: sometimes its politics and attitudes rather frighten me, but that's another post.) And I've had jobs that took me all over said city.
I'm often frightened in Huntington, though: What ALIENS have landed here who never want to LEAVE it? Are they the ones who brought those BIG, FRICKIN' TENDERLOINS? What kind of mutant pig are THOSE from? Who thought up that SUGAR CREAM PIE? Stuff that is so bad for you, you develop diabetes and heart disease just by being in the same room with it? And that tastes so good there are ADDICTION CENTERS just for sugar-cream-pie-eating Hoosiers? Who founded the MUSEUM OF VICE PRESIDENTS? (AKA Dan Quayle museum; it holds his Little League uniform. 'Nuff said.) Where a guy once got arrested for (I'm NOT making this up) a home-grown CASTRATION business.
And these people are scared to LEAVE?
But, you know, they're nice people. My friends, even. I just need to get 'em outa town.
Well, okay, I know that castration story probably caught you up short. Sorry. But, how 'bout it? Are you are country mouse...or a city mouse?

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