Live in a certain region, a certain area, a certain city and you had to be beholden to everything about it – beliefs, opinions, schools, foods, sports teams, you name it. If something was indigenous to that locale, and had gained prevailing conventional wisdom status, you better follow in lock step.
Travel across the globe and you’ll find some semblance of provincialism alive and sickening well to a degree. But you’d have to do some serious research to unearth a place more cordoned off to the “outside,” especially in terms of those from the inside looking out, or, heaven forbid, those from the inside accepting an outside idea, than Philly.
It’s not so much that differences don’t arise elsewhere, it’s just that they may not be met with such ridiculous disdain, as if having your own thoughts requires being shunned as a native or resident or whatever.
That being said, a list of some truths that, hello, reality check, don’t make me any less a Philadelphian, and a native to boot …
- I don’t like roast pork, in sandwich or any other form. Though it may not always be instantaneous, vomiting always follows my digesting of pork.
- Cheesesteaks with onions suck. For me, they’re not edible. Frankly, cheesesteaks with no onions are just so-so. Make it a cheesesteak with sauce, or, better yet, a pizza steak and now we’re talking.
- Being critical of the “home” team doesn’t automatically make you a hater. In many cases, the most sincere fans of the local squads are the ones most willing to speak out on them in critical terms.
- Bitching about everything that goes on between the lines doesn’t make you superfan material, either. Throwing in an original thought with the rips might add to credibility, though.
- I won’t ever claim the sports fan base as the most knowledgeable one there is. You can’t be so “fishbowl” and uniformed about things outside the city aside from fantasy numbers and be such.
- Then again, no core can top that base’s loyalty. That’s special, not stepford – no matter how convincing those professing the latter may be.
- Penn State is NOT Philly. Rooting for the Nittany Lions or being an alum doesn’t give you street cred anywhere within city limits.
- Just the same, being a Penn State fan or attending Penn State doesn’t take away your “I am Philly” card, either.
- I don’t hate New York … or Boston … or think Pittsburgh is this dweeby little place on the opposite end of Pennsylvania from Philly. You can “recognize” and even appreciate other places and still be Philly.
- I realize there are other beaches aside from those located at Atlantic City on down through Cape May … and that visiting them can be just as enjoyable as our Jersey Shore.
- Leaving Philly doesn’t make you any less Philly.
- Wanting to stay doesn’t make you any more.
- Jack Kerwin | firstname.lastname@example.org