Saturday, September 12, 2009

Where I Live: Murraland

Maryland is not the South. I've lived in the South. I lived there a long time. Part of me still lives in the South. This is not. The South. If you're going by what many Southerners [unfortunately still] do, and use the Civil War as a rote test, Maryland proves itself an independent. Maryland was going to secede with the rest of the South until the Union troops surrounded Baltimore and cut off all food and supplies from entering or leaving the city. Thus, Maryland fought, and won, with the North.

But Maryland is not the North, as I thought when we first moved here. Winters here aren't as long, and the sense of individuality of the North meshes with the Southern obligation to family and greater society to make a hodgepodge of responsibility across the state.

It's a tiny state, by most standards, but the geography goes West to East, from rural mountains to suburbs to The City back to suburbs out to farms and finally to beaches. Marylanders identify themselves by the county they associate with, names and nicknames rolling off tongues to immediately place a person in a rote social position.
-Calvert (Southern Maryland)... best described as the "ghetto country" where one can find tricked out cars weaving down country roads and historic red barns housing drug deals. Idyllic, and softly urban.
-PG (southeast of Southeast)... say it like it's your 'hood. Proud location of the University of Maryland and cities with names like "Beltsville" that sprang up with little rhyme or reason when the beltway was built in the seventies.
-HoCo (between DC and Bmo)... farms and McMansions. And Columbia, Suburb of Nowhere.
-MoCo (northwest of Northwest)... intensely populated (ex: Calvert has 4 high schools; MoCo has almost 20) and more diverse than the others I've mentioned so far, but if you live here, you're probably Jewish. Or possibly, if you're Jewish, you probably live here.

I could talk about the Appalachian rusticness of Western Maryland or the indecipherable accent of the Eastern Shore (oshters, anyone?) but I've never lived there, and I don't think I could do them justice. I could talk about Baltimore (ie Bmo, Balmer, Body-more, Charm City...) and "Naptown" with relative ease and knowledgeability, but I'm going to leave those up to other Gentlemen.

Maryland is a great state for all its geographical, social, historical diversity, but the best part is what brings us all together. Crab cakes and crab pickin' in the summer. The Orioles (Geau Eaus!). Old Bay. Roundabouts, and hating on people who can't drive in them. Scrapple. Having to explain what the "mid-atlantic" is. Army vs. Navy. UMD sports.

It took me a really long time to admit this, but I consider myself a true Marylander. I love my tiny little overlooked state, and I want others to love it too. So next time you're in the DC area, stop by in Maryland. Try to make it in the summer. Don't mention Pittsburgh, Dallas, or Duke. We'll show you a good time.


Max Nova said...

I'd say depending on which team(s) you support Philly and Pittsburgh are about equal in hate. Some days I just want to wander around with a "Go back to fucking Pennsylvania" shirt.

Alex said...

And definitely don't mention Indianapolis to anyone from B-more. They're still not over it.

Jstone said...

thank you for remembering that PG County is predominantly SE of DC. Lots of UMD kids think the whole county is made up of CP, Greenbelt, and the Rt 1 Corridor stretching to Laurel. If we forget about Clinton then where will we know to never be after dark? What of Upper Marlboro as well? How do you even get to Upper Marlboro?

PS- I am willing to supply you with a post on the Eastern Shore because you guys are missing out. Fer serious. I mean Pink Castles, Harriet Tubman, Canadian geese, race riots, and Indian curses dating back to the earliest settlements in Maryland. Good stuff.

Dialectric said...

Ummmm,,, MoCo? Is northeast of... well, nothing. It is, however, NorthWEST of Northwest. I weep, again, for the youngest voting generation's utter lack of any geographic sense. And the makeup of the "Gentlemen" notwithstanding, if you live here, you're probably NOT Jewish anymore. (although the latter corollary probably still holds.)

PS - B'Mo is WAY more diverse than MoCo. Anyone whose idea of diverse is Montgomery Co. needs to spend some time... I don't know, in the real world. But yes, a lot more so than say... Chuck Co. Which is NOT SoMd. SoMd is St. Mary's and Lower Calvert, and all that matters is that "God lives in Ridge." I have been blessed, despite my proud status as a "Native Washingtonian" to have spent more than half of my life living, working or sharing time/space in... I think, 7 of the counties. MoCo, PG, HOCo, B'Mo, St. Mo, Frednx, WaCo, and Dorchester. Oh, yes, and spent a fair amount of time on the PA side of the Cecil Co. line, and if THEY wanna root for Philly, let'em, 'cause they don't seem like Merliners to me, Hon.

I love the whole Chesapeake watershed, from the part where 70 starts to be paved properly again south of Breezewood to the rolling watery hills by the Chester. Just don't make me go into Va. BTW - lived and worked in St.Mary's for something like 5 years - if you need to know why the horses look so nervous and all those Amish hate LED's, let me know, I'll do your essay for tobacco country. And yes, once you really get off the highway, there are a frightening number of intersections that all consist of two softball fields catty-corner to one another, and a liquor store and a bar on the remaining two corners. And yes, the seafood is actually better there, even if the ambience and the service isn't. It's also cheaper.

AND last but not least, I think it high time we annexed DC back from the damn g'mint and took Slower DE while we are at it. But as a Notre Dame alum, I will never be able to say: "Go Terps!"

Dialectric said...

Also, while I share Max's sentiments, to a degree, about PA sports fans in MD., I have to admit that I have become a little fond of Pittsburgh, as I spend a portion of my summer in that area now; and they definitely have some interesting stuff going on, too... like the chocolate milk - OMG. This crap we have been drinking all these years has got to go - the Cooper's Lake Campground chocolate milk is like CRACK.

Matt Lindeboom said...

My estimation of where the South is and is not, may be unfair, but I use the changing taste dynamics of pizza the farther South you go as my litmus test. For the sake of argument (my argument) let's say New York is the epicenter of the pizza world (we know Chi-town "invented" the deep dish, but that alone is not enough to be the center.) The farther north you go, taste suffers, but negligibly until you reach Canada, where it dips dramatically at the border. However, the rate at which taste drops off as you travel South is much more dramatic than the journey North. By the time you reach Delaware you are already wondering what's going on here. Why is this slice getting so hard? You can hardly even fold it without it cracking down the center like a piece of wet cardboard. Maryland may as well be the Marianas Trench, because you will not recognize what you are eating again until you reach Miami, and even there you detect an aroma of something Cuban and forbidden in your sauce.

There are exceptions of course. There exist bastions of Italian eating in major cities like Baltimore and DC, referred to as Little _____, either Italy or Florence or Venice. But as for the quintessential American Slice, Maryland is most certainly The South.

Ozkirbas said...

@ Matt - I like your method of establishing southern/northern cultural signifiers through food. Pizza is interesting, but I think it more establishes "your distance from New York" than the gradual phase from North to South. Correlated, maybe. But, ultimately inconclusive.

I think a more accurate representation of where the border lies depends on how "iced tea" is traditionally served when one fails to provide his/her server anything signifying the kind (i.e. Sweetened vs. Nonsweetened tea). Sweet tea is a traditional southern beverage served as the norm where, if I were to walk into a restaurant and order "ice tea," I'll be served tea containing lots and lots of sugar. I've noticed, at least, that once you cross the Mason/Dixon line the exact opposite occurs, where "iced tea" is simply tea leaves brewed in hot water then cooled. In Maryland, I've observed an interesting anomaly where you get either/or, depending on the restaurant - signifying the state's "independent" or "mid-Atlantic" status.

I've also thought about the presence of lemons in tea as a cultural identifier, but, admittedly, I haven't been paying enough attention to lemons to put that theory into practice.

PS - Chicago deep dish is delicious.

Matt Lindeboom said...

Ozkirbas - You're right. My method is inconclusive at best. Since my schooling in Baltimore I've just always had a chip on my shoulder about my 4 years sans pizza. Sigh.

Besides that Maryland was always lovely. I always said that the most common phrase you hear while driving in Baltimore is, "Why did he just do that?"

Ozkirbas said...

@ Matt - New York pizza that good, eh? To my dismay, I've never been to a New York pizzeria with a native New Yorker. I'm very "meh" about pizza. Maybe New York pizza would turn that around about that.

(That Baltimore comment is so true, it's not even funny)

Alex said...

I think about geographical areas in terms of food too... I can't find cream of wheat in Maryland, but grits are readily available. Hence my tendency to think of it as the South.

B.Graham said...

@dialectric - oops, you are totally right. to my generation's credit, I think that blooper had more to do with my inability to understand what happens when a highway is a circle than anything else.

@everyone else - food is a great way to differentiate: sweet tea/unsweet tea, grits/cream of wheat, krystal's/white castle... though I must say the pizza thing is unfounded when you consider the greatness of one Mellow Mushroom.

another great way to differentiate could be the Reaction to Winter factor. example: the further north you go the more feet of snow it takes for people to notice/worry about it, whereas the further south you go, the more likely it is for someone to spill the ice in their sweet tea and shut down a whole city.

B.Graham said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Max Nova said...

"PS - B'Mo is WAY more diverse than MoCo. Anyone whose idea of diverse is Montgomery Co. needs to spend some time... I don't know, in the real world."

Yes cities are more diverse than the suburbs. Your second sentence is incredibly ignorant.

Jstone said...

the north-south debate is kind of weird. lots of people aren't really sure what they're trying to debate anyway. the differences really tend to be urban vs. rural. I've ordered tea in Medina, NY and it was sweet tea. I also got a Pizza slice in the same place and it was sweet dough...maybe they like sugar...
Maryland is weird about this because Baltimore is a North East (NE) city, hands down. It has the history, the design, the ethnographic make up, the cuisine, everything that identifies with NE cities like Philly, NY, Boston, etc. The problem of course is that to the east of Baltimore you get the Chesapeake watershed, and both sides of the bay are more like the rural south than anything. But then like I said, the rural south is so much like the rural north in my experience there are mostly case by case differences. The north-south divisions generally have to be determined on an urban basis. Atlanta is totally different from cities in the NE.There is no mass transit, a relative lack of historical districts or landmarks, the city builds horizontally rather than vertically, etc etc.
So by my distinctions I have determined that since Maryland's urban and suburban (which are connected to the urban) areas resembled that of the North East more than anything else, Maryland is in the North and the antiquated use of the Mason-Dixon line can be tossed out with the bath water.

B.Graham said...

@Jstone - Atlanta has about as much mass transit as Baltimore does (Marta vs. metro, random spattering of buses...) and the reason it has less landmark history is because it was, oh yeah, BURNED TO THE GROUND. Atlanta's skyscrapers are taller than Baltimore's, and Baltimore is full of some of the best soul food in the country. So put that in your pipe and smoke it.

If you're going to be serious about the north/south debate, it's a feeling more than anything else. The South, like I said, is more family/greater community oriented, whereas the North is more individualized. And it *feels* like the South. Come with me sometime, I'll show you.

B.Graham said...

ps I just reread the diversity comment and I stand by it.

Dennis said...

I love Maryland. Our state song is epic.

Lizzle said...

Not trying to insult anyone's homebase (lord, I'm from know I certainly don't mind any shit talking). But...yeah...Maryland is the stupidest fucking place I've encountered and yes I'm remembering we have places like Alabama and Arkansas. Mostly on my shit list is Howard County: talk about Southern Racists, without any of the Southern Hospitality. For one state to have TWO of the most corrupt counties/police forces in the country has to be a universal shit magnent of statehood. For a state to have such a corrupt metropolis it spawns an hbo/showtime/whatever SHOW about corruption that most people can't make sense of, is insane. I hate this place. I hate how lame the partying is. I hate how it's DC's surburban bitch and the New York times just released a 15+ article about water pollution and the businesses that have water quality violations: I looked up Silver Spring, Colesville and University where I just left after 2 years, and sure enough: over 20 companies with multiple violations each in the immediate area. I'm only so tough on the place because it IS filled with highly highly intelligent and thoughtful people. So I"m just shocked and disappointed with how bad it all is. But then might have something to do with them all being pussies. I dont' know...But..loved your blog and again..sorry for being harsh. But..the state ruined my 20s. I'm bitter. Good luck! I'm moving back to the Sunshine State where even though we can royally fuck up insanely important elections and Bushes run least the weather makes sense and you can smoke fucking weed at a gooddamn concert without repurcussions. And it's not a police state. Holler!

Ozkirbas said...

@Lizzle - Yes. Baltimore is JUST like the Wire. But, congrats you're going back to the West Coast. And, it's not like any of the cities over there have a historical background for over-militaristic policing or police corruption. Oh. Wait.

Max Nova said...

"Maryland - Where You Still Can Not Do Illegal Things in Public Places."

Sounds like a good slogan to me.

ali d said...

@Dennis Our state song is SO epic. Good call. More later. I have to amass my Maryland love into a coherent response. Love love love. In the meantime:

The despot's heel is on the shore.
Maryland, my Maryland!
His torch is at they temple door.
Maryland, my Maryland!

Avenge the patriotic gore,
That swept the streets of Baltimore,
And be the battle queen of yore,
Maryland! My Maryland!

(P.S. The "despot" is Lincoln. Now tell me we're not the South.)

Jason Heat said...

I REALLY dislike this need to still divide states by an antiquated 'North' vs. 'South' distinction. In reference to pure geography, that's one thing, but whether the war was mainly about this or not, the "South" name has incredible connotations to slavery, institutionalized racism, and a terrifyingly upsetting aspect of our country's history that I see NO reason to latch on to that name as a point of pride in 2009. Create a new division if you must, Red/Blue or whatever and decide that - I'm tired of people fighting for Maryland to reclaim a name of racism.

ali d said...

I don't at all acquaint fighting for the distinction of the South with racism, actually. It's what B's been talking about this whole time - the Southern feeling of welcome, hospitality, home, and family. To me, the idea of the North is all about brusque individuality, and I know that that is not my state. In my mind it has nothing at all to do with race.

Jason Heat said...

I don't see North or South as terms for either of what you described, but a case by case situation. Places geographically North or South are homey or bruque, depending on the people within. As has been well stated, aspects across Maryland run the gamut of these and other cultural identities, making basic over-archinh generalizations pointless.

North and South were the easy answer names for the sides in the Civil War and whenever I hear an argument over, are we the south, it goes back to that time. The names are intrinsically linked in the public conciousness to a terrible situation of slavery (as well as state's rights) and the time has come for new language to describe the way you feel rather than holding on to the language of the past, in my opinion. Because I would never want to be 'southern' in the way I still hear that term used. Your southern identity deserves its own word, free of negative associations.

Matt Lindeboom said...

I think the distinctions were also economic, industrial north vs agricultural south. But that's not the case anymore.

Ozkirbas said...

Is that practical, though? Do we shove off a name, only to find another name to cover it up? A lot of people are proud to call themselves southern, including people who have relatives who've been subjected to said slavery, institutionalized racism, and a particularly ugly war.

Jason Heat said...

I think there is a huge leap fro evolve/grow/change to 'shove it off.' I think the entire concept is outdated and antiquated. Don't rename it, reimagine and reconceptualize your point, rather than living in the same divisive language of centuries ago. Holding onto what was effectively war terminology from over a hundred years ago is not usually a good thing for moving forward, and I'd rather embrace change than cling to a comfortable for some but VERY flawed terminology.

Language is important, and meant to evolve, not stay static.

Max Nova said...

@ Ali - Yes there certainly is Southern Hospitality, but folks in the South tend to be less hospitable to Blacks, Gays, Jews, Punks, Liberals, Blacks, Northerners, Latinos, and Blacks, i.e. the folks who make the North pretty nifty.

Ozkirbas said...

Sure, but in order to change/grow/evolve you need a foundation. "Complete" reimaginings can't be "re"-imaginings or conceptualizations unless you have something to grow out from and part of that is history. Yeah, the South hasn't had the greatest track record, but, also, understand that this is history told by the side that won. The winners tell the "truth" and the "losers" are always stigmatized. I'll remind people that, contrary to popular belief, the Civil War was never really about slavery (see, Manifest Destiny). And, I should also remind people that the North, actually, doesn't have the greatest track record either (see, enslavement of the Irish and Chinese), but I don't think anywhere does. Not even Cananda. Or, Switzerland. Definitely not Turkey (and I love me some Turkey).

Point is, you can't burn a house down and rebuild it everytime you find something you don't like. Chances are, that's just a good way to end up homeless. It's the recipe for ending up alone. And, I don't mean independent. I mean alone.

@ Max - I would say that the North doesn't treat them that well, either (see, "fringe-dweller" defined)

Jason Heat said...

What the Civil War was actually about is at this point less important to the name 'South' than the current social implications.

I have to be honest, I think your metaphor is a huge stretch, and I don't see the connection. I'm not saying naming something 'the north' is good either. The entire CONTEXT is outdated. Time to move on.

People reimagine logos, names, ideas all the time to lose the stigma of the past and capitalize on their positive aspects. Or rework office personnel after a big merger to have the righht talent for a new time and location. This is a silly distinction now, and I am personally well past tired of it. Fighting to 'reclaim' Maryland's southern status is fighting to regain something that has long been obsololete. Lets find new, more accurate paradigms to define our country as it is TODAY, rather than slavishly adhering to the rhetoric of yesterday.

Ozkirbas said...

The Civil War comment was a more general address, tying into the concept and importance of history as the foundation from which people form associations with the word "South." From here, we stream into the metaphor.

The metaphor connection is rather simple:
The fundamental principle upon how a word formed through history, collecting certain connotations, is based on past occurrences. In the current discourse of this comment section, "Southern/the South" (and this could work for "the North" as well) is currently associated with multiple qualities - including family orientation and general hospitality, as well as some less liked associations, including institutionalized racism, slavery, and the Civil War. In essence, if you could call "the South" a house, these associations formed through history and social bias make up its foundation, holding it up and making it what it is today. The suggestion that a change in terminology, built on new, current day associations would, essentially be attempting to destroy the house and start from scratch with fresh ideas and connotations as a foundation. So, instead of "the South", we call it "Pleasantland" built with only current, and pleasant connotations, and all those old, nasty connotations we don't like about the South lay buried underneath this new house we've tried to build.

Except, no one really forgets these connotations. Dress it up how you want, Pleasantland is still the South. Classic Coca-Cola was really Original Coca-Cola all along. "Sy-Fy" is still really "the Sci-Fi Channel." The "CW" still plays the same crap "the WB" played. No one really buys it, we just go along for the ride.

So, the people who live in "Pleasantland" will still talk about "the South." Except, now they're probably resentful about the fact that being called "the South" wasn't good enough - because despite the blemishes, a lot of them really liked it. Hence, the principle behind "Pleasantland" collapses due to a weak foundation. And, we're now left with what to call this place because "the South" was too ugly a name with too many bad memories. Homelessness prevails. The people who want to call it the South will go off and build another "South" house on the same foundation. "The South" rises again, just like they said it would. Everyone else is left to wander because they bailed when it wasn't pleasant enough.

Connotations and associations with this kind of subject matter are too ingrained and important - and, they shouldn't be forgotten. Attempting to break a cycle is one thing, but forgetting/cleansing is how history is repeated. We have to live with it, learn from our mistakes. And, move past it when we're ready. At that point in time, the South will still probably be the South. But, that doesn't stop history from forming newer connotations to fortify the old foundation with something pleasant and fresh as time passes.

David Pratt said...

We could go back to Yankee and Dixie.

Alex said...

Actually, when I was living in London my flatmates often called me a Yankee.

B.Graham said...

@ Max - have you actually ever met anyone from the South or are you just repeating what you hear? because I can introduce you to my friends and family if you'd like...

David Pratt said...

Max doesn't need to meet them, they use incorrect font.

Jstone said...

@Jason- I agree, it's time to discard the terms North and South. They are antiquated and they do carry negative as well as positive feelings. I mean when I hear "Southern Pride" I imagine the Confederate Flag and all that it stood for. I mean ALL that it stood for, you can't pick and choose. I prefer Urban/Suburban/Rural or if you need a dichotomy East/West because North/South just doesn't apply anymore. Everyone is free everywhere, and everywhere is mixed up with all kinds of people from different backgrounds. Weather is our greatest divider.

@Oz- The Civil War was about slavery. And it also wasn't. It's impossible to simply choose one side over the other because anyone can make a case for either. This is actually to this day one of the most contested debates in American historiography.

@Max- remember, Boston is racist as hell and they are situated firmly in the north. People are unkind to people everywhere in the world. People are also warm and friendly everywhere in the world. Hence why Jason says these terms are no longer useful

@B-Baller-Graham- We should totally go to Hot-lanta. But not until winter...I will never return there in August ever...*Shudder*

@all- this is why I say we have a message board, its easier than digging back through these comments.

Jason Heat said...

@ J-Stone : Completely agreed, and well said.

@ Max - I think based on this thread alone we can consider 'Where I Live' a huge success. Great idea.

Dennis said...

How do you discard the terms "Northern" and "Southern"? They are geographic terms used to describe the location of the regions....

I don't really understand this whole changing the names argument. When I think of Belgium I think of the city of Brussels, waffles, and the murder(6-10 millions people)/enslavement of the Congolese people. I don't think they should change the name of their nation because they are ashamed of a part of their history.

The "west" of the United States reminds me of Manifest Destiny and the horrible things the country did to the Native Americans. Let's call it Puppyland to avoid reminding ourselves of our past mistakes.

Max Nova said...


I would become allergic to the west then!

Ozkirbas said...

@Jstone - that's fair. Though, I must say, that after graduating high school, I started having a hard time buying the northern-altruism-through-abolitionism concept (mostly because that idea was mainlined so hard during US History and I legitimately bought it). After awhile, I started to realize it didn't quite add up. And then, during junior year, one of my English Professors mentioned Manifest Destiny and repeating history, and it all clicked. Ending slavery became an after thought. It just makes more sense.

And, then of course, it goes back to our original topic of conversation - I hear that one way of determining which state is northern or southern depends on how the "Civil War" is taught in schools.

The more you know ~~*

Jstone said...

@oz excuse me, its the War of Northern Agression son, lets get the facts straight.

I totally agree that altruism was not apart of the Northern agenda, but the power of the Abolitionist movement was a factor. Regardless of anyone's position, abolition became Lincoln's stance and that's all that really mattered. I mean nobody really wanted to fight in a war anyway. Look at Union recruitment methods, sometimes they'd just scoop hobos off the street and put em in boot camp. I wish I could remove all this useless Civil War crap from my head and replace it with useful information like Prussian regimentation and the Poznan laws pertaining to lebensraum.

B.Graham said...

@Jstone - hahaha NO ONE wants to be in Atlanta in August, not even native Atlantans...

Lizzle said...

@Ozkirbas: Ummm, you should maybe try to point out my hypocrises only if you correctly identify a State's nickname: Florida is the Sunshine State and it's not on the West Coast. Holler at a Geography Map.

Ozkirbas said...

@ Lizzle - Actually, I probably shouldn't holler at a geography map as, in my mistake of switching "the Sunshine State" with "the Golden State," I knew exactly where California was. And, even if I should, I'm fairly certain state epithets aren't listed on most geography maps.

But, fair enough, I've made a mistake. But it still begs the question:

- Miami has had a publicized police corruption problem since the '80's and is the place of the FBI's largest anti-corruption sting in US history. How's that working out for ya?


- How's hurricane season coming along?


Ozkirbas said...

*one of. One of the largest. (Proofreading, yay!)

Jason Heat said...

now, now kids - this has been a pretty great conversation/debate. no need to bait each other.

David Pratt said...

@Lizzle -

Your comments on why you hate Maryland as opposed to Florida leads me to believe there are no people in Florida.

charlene said...

@above 3: Hahaha. Yeah, I know re: geography map. I was going to type, "Holler at a state trivia book" but if seemed weirdly specific.

If you read my comment, the very first sentence and last 2 mention highly shitty things about my own state. No one's is perfect (although Vermont and New Hampshire are getting close: no requirement to stand up when a judge enters a room? AWESOME!) It's about a balance however. So..yeah we have Roid-raging cops but at least they don't have an international track record for shooting innocent civilions' dogs, ie: Cheye Calvo, mayor of Berwyn Heights. I sat in the Annpolis State Capitol and listened to 6 families describe horrendous police activity. The mayor had to actually create a bill to try and process the more than 700+ a year SWAT deployments that Maryland has. I was there that day to represent the terrorized civilians that are medical marijuana patients. It's a terror/police state. Florida in no way, has a problem of this magnitude. WHY? cuz ironically and horribly enough we have true crime. So the cops dont' have time to actually shoot dogs and bust in on my friends at 6am for teaspoon amounts of weed. Howard county is a joke. My lawyer literally told me there isn't enough crime there so the best the cops can do is camp out at concert venues and bust people. That is lame. That is laaaaaaaame. We have Marley Fest IN Miami btw, so your Miami reference doesn't affect too much that I'm concerned with. And she encouraged me to move to Fla as soon as possible. She looked jealous. Also..I've gotten hundreds to possibly over a $1000 in parking meter tickets, speeding tickets, camera tickets, pull-overs for lack of TWO license plates: good lord, at least there are a dozen class action lawsuits in Florida against those cameras becuz they're bullshit. Everyone else in Maryland seems to enjoy them.

Also, at least the drivers in Florida can handle a girl in shorts. I've never been so sexually harrassed in my life. Standing on Colesville and University blvds. has scarred me. I've walked around in JUST bathing suits in Florida & no big deal. I wear a tshirt and capris and Ive been followed down a street & then to the gas station. Ive had guys at night jump out of their car and touch me. Floria's buses aren't full of alcoholics. Ive never been in the middle of a 15 person fight on a bus in floria. Ive never been pulled over so many times in my life. Everyone I know in Maryland is in some sort of huge trouble. Everone gets caught, everyone is pulled over and bothered.
Cameras and cops and creeps OH MY!

Anyways, I've obviously just had shitty luck, came across a blog about MD & saw 1 last opportunity to bitch because I've been traumatized by my bad luck in this horrible place. State pride is cool, I certainly liked MD the hour I moved here. By the end of the 1st week, I started to rethink my "move for life". Hence why Im proud that I can re-live in a state (florida) where you can drink, smoke, drive to work, park, etc. without CONSTANT police interference. No amount of crabs fixes MD's huge problems (I should know, I worked in a crab house).

And thanks for bringing up the hurricanes. It's really cool to pick at a huge gaping wound (beknownst or not. Ure in law school, I presume that means smarts: u know people die in those things). A family member of mine died in hurricane Andrew, not to mention a quarter of my friends become homeless/extremely poor. Google FEMA: they still havent' paid shit & check out how many insurance companies still even do business down there. Am I supposed to drop opinions on this shithole state just becuz my state has natural diasters?? So does MD: it's called UM football. You just further cemented my assertion that no one in MD has a good sense of humor. I'll go away now. Good luck. You guys need it.

(PS if this comment gets deleted I will take it as proof im right about everything..not that I particularly need it.)

David Pratt said...

Before I get in to how patently ridiculous your reasoning is, I just want to state:

"(PS if this comment gets deleted I will take it as proof im right about everything..not that I particularly need it.)"

Seriously? Are you for real with that? What kind of petty childish garbage is that? And above it, you essentially say "Well I've said my piece, you people are obviously going to disagree with me so peace out." Right. Go read my last piece on insulating yourself against debate.

So anyway, here's an interesting website you might want to check out. It gives statistics on erroneous police raids for the last quarter century. Let's see what happens when I search "Maryland" and "all years." Hmm . . 8 results. That's one bad raid every 3 years. Okay, let's plug in "Florida" and again, "all years." Well, look at that, 25 results. Over 3 times the police activity as the state of Maryland.

So you like Florida because the police are too busy to hassle people. It looks like it's because they've got their hands full shooting people in their own homes.

And about that Berwyn Heights incident involving the mayor? Yes, that was an erroneous police action in which the mayor's dogs were unjustly gunned down. However you left out the part where it was because he had just received a box that had 30 pounds of marijuana in it. Not only that, but his story about it being a misunderstanding has been completely accepted, and no charges have been filed against him. This was part of a larger drug investigation and unfortunately an innocent civilian was targeted.

Let me read the second entry here - oh, Florida police were targeting 50 growhouses and in the process assaulted an innocent Cuban immigrant and his wife. They received nothing for their trauma but an apology.

Yeah, Florida is nothing like Maryland at all.

Look, it's completely your opinion if you want to hate Maryland and love Florida. Your reasoning sems to be that it's easier to be a petty criminal in Florida, but hey, if that's what is important to you, then by all means, enjoy the freedom. But don't spin stories of why one is better than the other out of whole cloth - or perhaps more appropriately wool, which you then pull over your own eyes.

The too long, didn't read version;

Yo, I'm happy you think Maryland is a police state, and I'mma let you finish, but Florida has the highest rate of wrongful police activity of all time. Of all time!

Ozkirbas said...

To add:

- I have no clue why you think not standing up upon a judge's entrance to the courtroom is a good thing. But, power to Vermont and NH anyway.
- Pratt has adequately covered anything that I would have to say about your "police state" assertion.
- I'm sorry about your history of sexual harassment reception. However, I implore you to recall that misogyny and chauvinism are world-wide epidemics not localized to one particular area. I'm fairly certain there are women who have had similar experiences in Florida while not having any issue here, as well.
- Just as you're free to decide to not knock on your state for having natural disasters, I'm fully entitled to knock on it for having them. My sincerest condolences to your family for your loss.

And finally:
- If you've read closely enough on the blog to recall my personal information, then you should know that the purpose of the blog is two fold - entertainment and discourse. Comments sections serve appropriately under the discourse category of these two primary functions (given, this particular thread has also been extremely entertaining). That said, I'll state that we refrain from deleting comments: excepting only for personal comments that the authors themselves wish to retract and postings that are facially and patently offensive in regards to a given race, gender, religion belief, or sexual orientation. Say what you will about my personal character, but the Gentlemen are people of integrity.
- If you're going to knock mine/our "sense of humor," I'll also remind you that my tone has been consistent with yours. And, I feel that I've been nothing, but humorous. If, for some reason you've been offended by something I've said/how I've said it, be more prepared for such discourse in the future.
- If you've read this far, you totally needed the validation you've attempted to reject.

Fair well. Au'revoir. Auf Wiedersehen. Güle güle. It's been fun.

Jstone said...

PPS- Maryland has real crime, all the drugs they deal in New York get funneled through MD. No different than the Colombians that aren't being taken care of in Florida.

Chris Evans said...

As a Marylander who now lives in New York, I cannot stress enough how frustrating it is that all my northerner friends think MD is the south.