Best Places in the US to live, Part 2

(Part 1 link, is case you missed it)

LINK

http://azurejames.wordpress.com/2014/10/22/best-places-in-the-us-to-live-my-opinion/

Midwest:

Ohio: Southern Ohio is pretty nice, Northeastern Ohio is nothing special, Western Ohio is flat and normal.

Indiana: Surprisingly hilly and interesting compared to what you might expect. Simple but good people.

Illinois: Actually this one is surprising. Aside from the depression of the huge Chicago area, Illinois is quite wonderful. The landscapes are beautiful and the woods are nice, when you can find them. Plus gas is $2.20 in 2014 and that sure doesn’t suck! The people seem pretty moderate.

Wisconsin: A little bit too close to freezing Manitoba and Minnesota, but if wilderness is your thing, you can find it anywhere in the area. The people are very friendly.

Northwest:

Montana:

Southwest:

Haven’t been there. I’ve heard New Mexico is awesome, Arizona is cool but too hot, and Texas is an outdoorsman’s paradise but very conservative.

CANADA

Ontario: Not a fan of Toronto area… eww. Rural Ontario is good aside from the bugs. It has a mysterious, wilderness feeling to it and is pretty fascinating. It’s essentially water, pine trees, snow, and country folk. (in the summer maybe just that minus the snow and plus bugs)

Manitoba: Slightly Western version of Ontario. There are some alright areas in it but overall it seems a bit cold and sad. If you’re looking to film a cold and sad movie, this is a great place.

Saskatchewan: A little cooler than Manitoba. Actually slightly warmer but just more prairie-like. Lots of farming and few people. It would suit loner types very well, although like all the provinces it gets colder in the north and by the time you get there the towns only consist of 300 people. Look up Uranium City.

Alberta: This one, I think, is the most interesting and homey province in Canada, although it gets some competition from SK, BC, and MB. There is a great variety here, from tundra to parkland to mix prairie to prairie to dry prairie to desert to mountains. The cities are alright and the rural culture is still there once you get an hour away from the cities.

BC: I don’t like mountains, although some people love them. The coast is pretty awesome feeling and the islands are nice as well. Vancouver is expensive to live in but very warm.

North: Northern Canada has a mixture of young workers, natives, fugitives, and adventurers. Not a run-of-the-mill place by any means. Try your luck if you want to go there; a lot of towns don’t even have roads. Even Uranium City, SK doesn’t have a road leading up to it, and that’s not even in one of the Northwest Territories!

CONCLUSION

Best Places in the US to Live (my opinion)

It seems that although there are thousands of pages of data on the different states, nobody has actually published any opinions of them! Therefore, to fill in the information gap, I am going to give my opinion of the best places in America to live. You’re welcome to comment and argue in the comment section! I know some people might be offended if their state is not on the list, so tell me why it’s great and I might revise its status.

*This post will be unabashedly biased because it is only my informed opinion, not the actual, objective truth. (if such a thing exists) Pretty much anywhere I have not been to will not be rated either positively or negatively because that is not fair.

Northeast:

New York:  Western NY has really great areas, like East Aurora, Cattaraugus Amish Country, Allegheny Park, and parts of Buffalo. NY city is way too fast-paced and crowded. Central NY is alright but seems to be missing some sort of spirit in most areas, which is hard to quantify but makes sense when I go there.

Mid-Atlantic:

Pennsylvania: There are tons of different areas of PA that are interesting and unique. Hillbilly culture in the north, rural culture in the center, big cities and Amish country in the south, it’s hard to give an opinion of the entire state but there are some great areas in it. The Erie panhandle seems cold and devoid of much culture to me, that would be my least favorite part.

Maryland: The Maryland panhandle, on the other hand, is a nice spot. It’s slightly more moderate both politically and climateically than VA. Hagerstown MD seems like a great town. I have their Almanac.

Southeast:

West Virginia: The first time I went through it, it seemed rural, hilly, hillbilly, wild, and slightly scary. The second time it seemed pretty much the same except friendlier! I like it, there is definitely no lack of culture or individuality going on here! However, it doesn’t have the hearty, downhome feeling since it’s so wild.

Virginia: I have only been to Western Virginia, which is somewhat similar to West Virginia. It is more slow, conservative, and flat, though. Virginia is like a big garden and has a fabulous climate. I can see why people defended it so vigorously in the Civil War. Not a bad place to live.

North Carolina: By the time you get to NC, you are seriously in the South. The Smokey Mountains area has a more introverted, magical essence to it whereas the central part is more typically Southern and slightly more judgemental according to my experience. NC is one of my favorite Southern states overall.

South Carolina: If you think NC is the South, SC is even deeper in. It forgoes NC’s slight dualities in favor of just being Southern and rocklike. It’s a steady, polite, hot, slowed down state. Might be hard to live in if you’re from the North but it has a definitely charm. Sadly, Sherman burned a lot of old buildings down so it does not have the same historical atmosphere as Georgia.

Georgia: Georgia is green, SC is orange. Those are the prevailing colors. Georgia’s temperament feels more green as well, a little bit more structured and colonial than the Carolinas. The wilderness has a different feeling as well, with red clay and green vines and trees abounding.

Florida: Northern Florida has a mixture of semi-southern parts like Ocala, and very southern parts, like the Pensacola area. If you can stand the heat it seems like a decent place to live. Southern Florida is getting into dangerous territory, as it is actually tropical and has lots of scary wildlife. I would not recommend it.

Kentucky: KY is pretty awesome and unique, having its own identity. Although there are some very poor areas in the East, there is a lot of history and culture there as well. The center has the Lexington area which is paradise for horse owners.

Tennessee: A little bit more in the past than KY culturally. TN people are the most polite in the whole country. The climate is great, although the people and towns can be mixed from my opinion.

VISIT PART TWO FOR CANADA, THE MIDWEST, NORTHWEST, AND SOUTHWEST!

LINK

http://azurejames.wordpress.com/2014/10/22/best-places-in-the-us-to-live-part-2/

Do bugs have souls?

I was thinking about death, and taking comfort in the fact that most religions believe in eternal life of some kind. Although the body obviously dies, I have never felt that the soul ceases existence. That is good news, since once in a while I feel like death is probably totally permanent and complete, and you stop existing in any way after it. I suppose the great probability is that’s false.

Which leads me to the question I wonder often when I kill mosquitoes. Do bugs have souls? Do they have eternal life, or when they die are they dead forever? To make this even more extreme, when your body cells die are they gone forever, or do they have a soul too?

I’ll chew on it.

Canada vs. America: Round 2 Fight!

The North:

in America, the North includes Alaska and possibly Minnesota. Alaska is an amazing place with many similarities to the Yukon except that it is slightly more Russian and father west. However, it does not compare to the size of the Canadian north.

in Canada includes the Yukon Northwest Territories Nunavut Quebec and also the tops of Ontario, Saskachewan, and Manitoba. These places have little law enforcement, super varying hours of sunlight, mosquitoes, harsh terrain, -50* cold, flies, and some of the toughest people around, since they can survive in such harsh lands. The Canadian North varies from pure ice in Nunavut to subarctic in the Southern Yukon.

Results:

America started the round quickly with a jab followed by a huge swinging right. Canada partially blocked the hook but was still hurt by it. Canada bounced back with no less than five big hitters in a row, of which America only blocked the first one. America got a black eye.

Previous Score was 3-2 America winning.

New score is 4-6 Canada winning.

Canada vs. America: Round 1 Fight!

Food:

Canada is known for a number of signature foods. Most of them appear to be on the lower-class side, like salt meat, donairs (sort of like wraps), those Winnipeg crazy burgers, vienna sausages, and (arguably) poutine. Some places, especially in Quebec, make amazing gourmet poutine, so that depends. Mcdonald’s poutine is much better than expected, though!

I’ve noticed brambleberry pie and Saskatoon berries to be pretty popular in the West, and good as well. Butter tarts and pecan tarts are  popular and extremely good, although you have to be in the right type of bakery to find them. Macaroni and Cheese is called “Kraft Dinner” and is a staple for kids and Baptist church meals. Tourtière is a meat pie made out of venison or pork. Bannock is an old-fashioned pioneer bread roasted over a fire, although it has modern incarnations as well. There are more signature Canadian foods but these are an introduction, at least.

America has invented dozens and dozens of different homegrown dishes. Often a small geographical change will change the food culture significantly. For example, Ohio and Kentucky, though right next to each other, have Midwestern and Southern tastes. In the Northeast, Weber’s mustard, maple syrup, fish fries, Ted’s hot dogs, barbeque to some extent, and delicious New York pizza are popular. In the Southeast, apple pie, fried green tomatoes, fried chicken, collard greens, cornbread and sweet potato casserole. And BBQ, especially in South Carolina and Texas. Southern food is somewhat popular in the North as well. Waffle House, Huddle House, Bojangle’s Biscuits, KFC, and many other chains had their start in the South. 

The Midwestern staples are Blue Moon ice cream, Chicago Deep Dish Pizza, Coney Island Hot Dogs, various meat sandwiches, and BBQ (again).  White Castle and Wendy’s started in Ohio.

In the Southwest, there is a lot of good Mexican food, and Texas has its own style and a lot of variety. Don’t be surprised if you can’t eat it all, cause Everything’s Bigger in Texas. California similarly has amazing Mexican food and is known for good healthy food such as sushi and salad as well.

Results:

Canada started off well with a few well-aimed punches, some of which were blocked by America and others made it thorough his defences. Though battered somewhat, America was just getting started and gave Canada a large uppercut, appropiately in the jaw.  

America wins 3-2.

Round Two is coming up!

Do you agree with the results? Comment!