Flip Through

Friday, September 07, 2007

Sugar and spice and everything nice

This, we know, is what little girls are made of. Little boys, likewise, are made of snakes and snails and puppydog tails, for reasons unknown.

Very nice, but more interesting is what the state of New Hampshire is made of. Dunkin Donuts and granite and vanity plates? Communist-era grocery stores and hair salons and dial-up Internet? Ski slopes and haddock on buns and bikers? Is this truly the most bizarre state in the Union? I think so-o. Containing barely one million citizens, New Hampshire ranks 41st in population and not one of these people is anything less than snowy white.

I may be exaggerating, but only slightly.

Worth noting is that New Hampshire, despite its frigid temperatures and lack of wireless, has produced a variety of famous people, including Daniel Webster (who is not who you think he is), Dan Brown (who does not deserve to be well-known), and funnyfolks Sarah Silverman and Seth Meyers. All I can think is that growing up in an Arctic environment of seasonal tourism and IGAs would turn me towards meth and teenage pregnancy, not fiery oratory, pot-boilers, and Comedy Central shows.

Honestly, it's funny how New Hampshire works. You fly into Manchester, the only international airport in the state, and think, if you're me, Wow! I'm farther north than I've ever been in the Continental United States! You then realize that your parents live four hours north of where you are currently standing. So far north, in fact, that it would have been closer for them if you had just flown into Montreal, Quebec. As you drive ever more northerly, you begin to realize why this state has so few residents. Why the place is abounding with Dunkin Donuts yet has perhaps ten movie theatres. Why black people would find it such a heinous environment to live in. Why, perhaps, the Old Man in the Mountain had the gall to finally fall down after untold years of being the main tourist attraction.

There is nothing to do here. One can only hike so much. If it is not winter, skiing, snowboarding, and tubing are not possible. The beach is not a beach, simply a shoreline. The state history is the history of every other New England state. The only places to buy alcohol are state liquor stores. If it isn't blazingly obvious, I don't have much use for New Hampshire.

One thing worth mentioning--NH will make you write. The best short story I've written thus far was set in New Hampshire. Maybe John Irving and Robert Frost are on to something.
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