10 Things Transplants Learn About Phoenix
As a city with a lot of transplants, there are a lot of lessons people are going to learn after moving here.
Here are 10 things transplants will learn at some point after their move to Phoenix:
10.) Yes, you will get used to the heat
Listen, people who complain when it gets to 95 degrees -- one, shut it, and two, you'll get used to it. There's a reason literally millions of people live in the Phoenix area -- we're all used to it.
You're saying you're bored because there's a lack of "culture" in Gilbert. I'll be damned. When you picked a house in a gated neighborhood of 300 houses that are all indistinguishable from one another, that should have been a hint that it's not exactly an emerging arts scene where you live. Even Tempe and Scottsdale have their own identities, so if you're bored where you live, it ain't Phoenix's fault.
The thought that Phoenix isn't diverse is one of the strangest myths about this place. If you live in Scottsdale, your city borders an Indian reservation. You may have heard this thing about Phoenix having a fairly large Latino population. Even on the religious front, there are a fair amount of Mormons around town. If you leave your own neighborhood, you're going to witness some diversity.
New Yorkers seem to get the most worked up when they see someone with a gun in public. It happens. We're not sure why some people feel the need to bring a gun to McDonald's, but it happens.
The power of the air-conditioning system is a factor in choosing a car. The best parking spot is not the one nearest to the entrance of a store, but the one that's at least partially shaded by a tree. Black leather may not be the greatest choice in the world. Seat-belt buckles are something that should be handled with the same amount of care as a dirty syringe. Welcome to the world of cars in Phoenix.
Please don't stab anyone. But that first month of full-blown air-conditioning use on your electric bill will make your eyes pop out of your head.
If you're from Chicago, you might be an anomaly moving to Leavenworth, Kansas, but you're not that special when you move to Phoenix -- a lot of transplants live here. In fact, you'll find that the most interesting place to be from is Phoenix. There seem to be very few Phoenix natives who can tell you about Phoenix 20 to 30 years ago, or even just 10 years ago.
If you have one iota of respect for the rights of all people, or for a functioning government agency, you will start to judge people who voice support for Sheriff Joe Arpaio. If someone's okay with racial profiling, okay with constitutional abuses, okay with sex-crime investigations taking a back seat, okay with conspiracy theories, and okay with misspending millions of dollars of your money, then yeah, you're going to judge that person.
There's this image that the Phoenix area and cowboys are somehow related. Nobody wears cowboy hats around here. The closest thing to cowboys are some of the Queen Creek or Apache Junction residents who dress like Larry the Cable Guy. There are some real cowboy-type people on ranches around Arizona, but not around Phoenix.
One day, you're going to go into a retail store or a movie theater, where it feels like the thermostat is set on 50 degrees. When you walk out of the store, into 113-degree heat, you'll breathe a sigh of relief and make a stunning realization -- not only have you adjusted to the heat, but you're happy to feel it. And that's your final test to become someone who's "from" Phoenix.
Got a tip? Send it to: Matthew Hendley.
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