Don’t Move Out of Philly Until You Read This

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Do I care that Portfolio.com ranked Philadelphia a ho-hum-yawn 32 of 67 on their “Best Labor Markets for Young Adults[1]”? No. But I’d still like to trash-talk the cities that made the Top 10. After all, I DO care about young and naive Philadelphians who might be lured to move away by such inane lists; we 20- and 30-somethings might be the only damn thing stopping the state of PA from being all hospices and retirement “villages” by 2025. (Still love you, Gram!) [SIGNUP]

1. Austin. Oh, Austin, you glittering gem of all that’s clever and hip. Is anyones else as sick as I am of hearing about how cool Austin is? Does anyone have the teensiest suspicion that the whole place might be built on the shifting sands of “clever promotional techniques” and “media hype”? I’m just saying, remember that we’ve been dubbed everything from the Sixth Borough to the Next Great City.

2. Washington. Take this city’s “well-above-average per capita income” and subtract the astronomically well-above-average rent, and the only people who can tolerate D.C.’s cost of living are rich old people (read Congress) and young people who will beg, borrow or steal to become those rich old people someday (incidentally, those activities are prerequisites for that transformation).

3. Raleigh. Ah, The South! You know they still smoke in hospital delivery rooms down there, right? OK, maybe that’s not true. But North Carolina’s statewide smoking ban did just start this year.

4. Boston. The opposite of The South, but equally troublesome. The fact that while mentioning Boston’s ranking, Portfolio used the words “intellectual cachet” should say it all.

5. Houston. What are you? An oil tycoon?

6. Oklahoma City. What are you? An oil tycoon? OK, here’s the thing about lists like this. They don’t exactly give you specifics about the type of work available. Sure, there was a 1990s hiring boom in Silicon Valley, but if you didn’t know enough about computers to understand why it was called Silicon Valley, then you still didn’t have a great job there. Portfolio’s lack of details has left me to fill in the blanks for Oklahoma City. I’m thinking telemarketer…shooting range manager…

7. Dallas-Fort Worth. Changing from “yous guys” to “ya’ll” and from baseball hats to cowboy hats will be harder than you think.

8. Tulsa. Rent in Tulsa is $508 per month for a reason: Who would pay more to live there? Which has me thinking now…does the fact that people move to a place for job opportunities or cheap rent actually make it a great place to live?

9. Seattle. Soooooooo 90s. (Austin, This is your future.)

10. Baton Rouge. OK. Who’s compiling this data? I’m starting to think there’s some conspiracy to get everybody to move to red states so blue states will wither and die. Well, Survey People, Philly’s not falling for it!

JANINE WHITE is Philly Mag’s managing editor.

Endnotes:
  1. Best Labor Markets for Young Adults: http://www.portfolio.com/business-news/us-uncovered/2010/03/15/austin-washington-raleigh-and-boston-top-2010-rank-of-best-cities-for-young-americans/

Source URL: https://www.phillymag.com/news/2010/03/17/dont-move-out-of-philly-until-you-read-this/