Living in Ann Arbor, I sometimes feel like a stranger in a strange land.
But in contrast to growing up in Detroit, the city is very good and worth the price. A college town with a vibrant downtown provides ample entertainment options, and none of them involve monster truck rallies.
Not that there's anything wrong with such rallies. I don't understand the appeal but I don't think less of someone who does. Same with opera, truth be told.
But Ann Arbor certainly has a reputation. Perhaps a snooty reputation. But a reputation. And Lord knows, I do sympathize with that suspicion of my town.
But this is a good town to live in, insulated from the world by space and a fine university that just oozes brain power and gravitas. We're not crazy--we've been tested. Our gas stations may dispense Regular, Gasuccino, and Ultra Unicorn Blend, but the homeless guy asking for change will probably actually buy a latte and might have more college credits than I do. I know the guy baking the artisan bread sure does.
Anyway, I really like sitting outside at a pub on a nice day downtown, people-watching, in this town. And by "people" watching I mean women watching. Fine. I'm a pig. But life is good. And I don't stare and I don't whistle or yell out, "Hey babe! Wanna get lucky?" Perhaps I just need time.
So imagine my buzz kill this week when I'm sitting there, reading, drinking a pint of Bass, and letting the world (women) pass me by in this most intellectual of cities, and a man walks by and very clearly announces, "Damn, I've gotta take a s**t."
It says a lot about Ann Arbor that it wasn't actually more than a momentary buzz kill. Life is that good.