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housing What I've Learned From Living In Tucson
by cxreg
gfd messagesAIM
( on Jun 2, 2005 01:00:32 AM

If you were logged in, you could vote for this story!

I moved to the desert with bean in 2002 after spending most of 24 years on the east coast. Since moving here, I have come to realize many things. I'd like to share some of those with you.
I used to think that people who had "less money" were inherently less assholish. Sure, lots of people are assholes but I had been under the impression that people with lots of money were the bigger assholes. I no longer think that! Being a shithead is equal opportunity! Thank you Tucson for showing me not to generalize!

I learned that Green Light means "wait", Yellow Light means "start going" and Red Light means "cram as many cars through as you can before someone is broadsided (which they usually are)". I no longer misunderstand how traffic lights work. Also, when you need to turn (left or right, doesn't matter), you have to come to a complete stop in traffic before starting your turn, or else your car will probably explode. Thanks Tucson!

If you think you don't have allergies, you simply live in the wrong place! There's a whole world of pollen and dust that you've never inhaled just waiting to tickle your sinuses. But sneezing isn't the best part, because in the desert, allergies CAN KILL YOU!

Then there's pyschology lessons. "Laid back" actually means "passive aggressive and insincere"! Cool!

And don't forget rain! Nevermind "downpours", "drizzles", and "sprinkles", because at the first speck of moisture you should lock yourself in your house and if you absolutely must go outside, it is cause for absolute panic, and driving 3 miles per hour (even if it's been "specking" for the last 3 weeks, there's no need to acclimate). And of course there's the "monsoon season" which is a month-long period of sporadic rain that people elsewhere would recognize as "light showers", but who needs drainage when you can allow 2 inches of rain to become A RAGING RIVER.

But this is the desert. It's not all rain. It's hot, of course. Fucking really hot. "But it's a dry heat" right? That makes it better? Fuck you, yes, it's dry. It's so dry, that you wake up with a hangover when you HAVEN'T BEEN DRINKING. IS THAT DRY ENOUGH FOR YOU?

The only forms of music that exist are mariachi, country, shitty jazz, and 70s metal.

A city of nearly a million people has no need for establishments that are open past 10 pm, except for bars that play mariachi, country, shitty jazz, and 70s metal until 1 am.

If you own a motorcycle (which you must, or at least have stickers claiming you do), it has to be the loudest loud that ever louded, causing ear hemorrhaging for 15 blocks. If you don't, you should spend all your money on a stereo that plays bass at a volume which actually shakes parts off the car (which you cannot afford to fix since you spent all the money on the stereo, and don't have to since there's no inspection).

Mail delivery (coming or going) is optional, and every area is a "training area" which is perfectly valid justification for missing bills, checks, and anything else important. Your credit sucks now? Well then, you should have thought of that before getting utilities or credit cards or loans.

I hope you took notes, this will all be on the final.

[ Comment on this story ]

    heh. sounds familiar
    by lbrtylvr
    gfd messages
    on Jun 2, 2005 01:39:32 AM
    i "moved" to phx once from L.A., lasted maybe a month for a lot of the reasons that you point out. the thing that really amazed me was that it was very, very common to see people walking around with huge assed hand guns on their hip like a cowboy movie or something. most of the bars that i went in had fucking pegs on the back bar and required patrons to check their weapons before getting served. weird place. thank god i don't have allergies.
    [Reply to this comment]
    by raven(duz ur face hurt its killin me)
    gfd messagesAIM
    on Jun 2, 2005 12:05:04 PM
    living in the moderate-forest-temperate (i.e. shitty river swampland and cow toilet) zone has taught me that humidity is mein enemy. i hate taking a shower, getting all cleanified, getting all un-wet, putting on my nice fresh clothes, stepping outside, AND IMMEDIATELY FEELING DAMP A-FUCKING-GAIN. there's also the issue of hair to consider - for a girl with wavy/curly hair this humidity sure does make my hair resemble Ms. Frizzle's of the Magic School Bus pretty much all the time. i fucking hate this bullshit humidity -- it makes this place even more unpleasant in the summer. not only are you more bored than you've ever been in your life every day after nine pm, but you're drenched in sweat despite showering four times a day and your hair looks like you've mounted a half-drowned permed Pekingese on top of your head.

    so this news of dry heat also having terrible effects upsets me a little lot. i really thought dry heat was going to save me. is there no weather utopia for me? is there any justice in this world? fuck.

    my dreams have been dashed in one fail swoop. sobz.
    [Reply to this comment]
      paradise does exsist
      by lbrtylvr
      gfd messages
      on Jun 2, 2005 03:34:49 PM
      i have found the ultimate climate. the area where i live is very warm during the summer, yet during the winter, it gets cold enough to snow a few times a year. there are actually 4 seasons and none of them are very harsh. nearly perfect.
      [Reply to this comment]  [Parent]
    cxreg #1 fangirl
    by bean
    gfd messages
    on Jun 2, 2005 04:20:16 PM
    I keep reading this story. And I keep laughing. Because if I stopped I know that I would just keep adding to this list and start breaking shit because we're still trapped in Tucson!
    [Reply to this comment]
      on the other end of the AZ spectrum...
      by lbrtylvr
      gfd messages
      on Jun 2, 2005 04:57:31 PM
      without knowing why; i've always wanted to live in flagstaff. i would move there in a heartbeat. for no reason whatsoever, i don't know a soul that lives there, no connection at all with the area but, i really like the place. every time i pass through there, i try to plan my trip so that i can hangout for a day or two. almost landed a job there once. someday.....
      [Reply to this comment]  [Parent]
    Yeah, yeah, but d-town sucked too
    by necron(
    gfd messages
    on Jun 4, 2005 07:18:14 PM
    I hear you, man... but Downingtown has it's bad points too. Grass is always greener... We have the same problems on Cape Cod too, except that instead of the locals acting like idiots and assholes, we have tourists. And I think the rich people / asshole thing is still true, at least in the northeast. Thanks for the laugh, CX. I should come visit so so I can put some "" stickers on the cars out there!
    [Reply to this comment]
    You do know, though, thumbs up
    by TheChisa(come@me.bro)
    gfd messages
    on Jun 6, 2005 03:05:10 PM
    it's better than Newark.

    Which is kind of like saying the third level of Hell is better than the seventh, but still.
    [Reply to this comment]
    I'm happy to report gold stargold star
    by cxreg(
    gfd messagesAIM
    on Jun 13, 2005 04:39:05 PM
    that this story comes up on the 2nd google page for "living in tucson. may this town dry up and blow away.
    [Reply to this comment]
    the desert sands....
    by lbrtylvr
    gfd messages
    on Jun 13, 2005 06:54:06 PM
    will always prevail.
    [Reply to this comment]
    Tucson can kiss my ass. thumbs up
    by djiienneaux(
    gfd messages
    on Jun 22, 2005 07:57:25 PM
    I once moved to Tucson, under the delusion that it was a small, peaceful little city set in the beauty of the desert. Yes, it was small. Less people meant less chance of finding someone worth talking to. Yes, it was in the desert, which IS beautiful, but entirely not condusive to human existance. Pouring several thousand tons of concrete onto the desert does little to make it a more tolerable place to live. That was the longest three fucking months of my life.
    [Reply to this comment]
      Have to agree
      by bean
      gfd messages
      on Jun 23, 2005 02:21:55 PM
      It sure does a good job of disguising itself of something worth value.
      [Reply to this comment]  [Parent]
        I visited a friend in Ph. once...
        by EvilFuckingBastard(
        gfd messages
        on Oct 19, 2005 11:54:59 AM
        ..and when, at 0300Hrs (yes, that is *AM* for you non Military folk) he was able to scramble an egg on the hood of his car, which had been parked all day and NOT run, I swore never to step foot in that hell hole ever again...

        We spent the entire week I was there either going to movies (nice cheap matinee, free a/c, you figure it out), swimming in the pool ("Hey, when did you get a heated pool?" It's *not*. "Oh fuuuuck..."), or just not bothering to come outside until LONG after the sun had set.

        When I saw his next door neighbor fire up the bbq grill, standing there in NOTHING but his apron & an oven mit on his hand, I told my friend he could fucking KEEP Arizona.

        I flew home two days later, and only waited THAT long cause I couldn't afford the extra cost for a "non-emergency" schedule change...
        [Reply to this comment]  [Parent]
    Kingman, AZ
    by lester(
    gfd messages
    on May 13, 2006 01:24:42 PM
    has all of the aforementioned problems, plus the fact that the people who live here are mostly semi-retarded/inbred/toothless/fucking retarded.
    [Reply to this comment]
    solution: thumbs up
    by cohenr
    gfd messages
    on May 15, 2006 11:44:14 PM
    Move to Sydney, Australia! It may sound drastic, but here wwe have sunshine 9/10 days, snow is only a drive away, we're right by the beach, it never goes over 30C, most people are prety nice, and hardly any of them are assholes, and we aren't alowed guns in public! On top of that, we have public health systems, better overall health, less pollution, cheap seafood and a labour shortage, wich means that it's dead easy to get a job.
    [Reply to this comment]
    Is it really that bad?
    by CNDldb
    gfd messages
    on Jun 10, 2008 12:04:05 PM
    My fiance is going to start doing US border patrol...the only problem is they have to work their first year in one of the Southeastern states. He's hoping to get Arizona (as close to Tucson as possible). So, after putting my avid google skills to work I must say I'm kind of wondering what we could be getting ourselves into. He's lived in a Michigan suburb his whole life, and I've lived in Canada all of mine. We've never had to not deal with snow for less than 5 months out of the year and spending most of our time between Detroit and Toronto we're used to bigger cities with a lot to do. Tucson sounds so small town and remote. I mean, I hear things, but is being that close to the Mexican border really that bad? I don't think I've ever even been south of Illinois. What are the towns south of Tucson, closer to the border like? I'm really not trying to be ignorant (which I know that I am being but bear with me) but are the Mexicans (and Americans too for that matter) who cross the border there kind of rough? Some insight would be much appreciated!
    [Reply to this comment]
    by nykz8046
    gfd messages
    on Sep 17, 2009 04:10:49 PM
    So yeah... I live in Tucson. Been here for 5 years. It's one of those cities that your outlook on the city will depend soley on what area you live in/visit. I shopped at Tiffany's a few months ago, than drove to another part of town where cops were in the middle of a high speed chase with a *GASP* "gang banger".

    I am becoming quite partial to Tucson, its growing on me. There is a huge struggle in the city now to make downtown less of a toilet for homeless people and bring in more cultural events etc. Soon you will not have to wade through urine and feces to see a good show at the Rialto... :)
    [Reply to this comment]
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