Who's Your City?, by Richard Florida
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Archive for April, 2008

Who’s Your Fayetteville?

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

I’ve been a life-long resident of Fayetteville, AR. It’s a pretty quiet, tree-lined, college town where you can leave your car (heck, even your house) unlocked. We’ve got a lot more diversity than most of this area, thanks to the University of Arkansas. We have a smattering of the things that make a town livable and fun – live music, street festivals, art galleries, random public weirdos.But honestly, as Fayetteville has morphed and merged wit h Springdale/Rogers/Bentonville, its unique character has been diluted almost entirely away. More and more strip malls and McMansions, fewer decent jobs (but ever-higher housing prices), and more white-bread SUV drivers are making this town look like every other red-state sprawl-ville. Which, if that’s what you’re into, would make this a great place to live. But if you’re like me, and appreciate actual culture and diversity, it might not be as great as it once was.

Sent by DeLani Bartlette from Fayetteville, AR

Who’s Your Fort Collins?

Sunday, April 27th, 2008

Hmmm, saw you on C-SPAN Book-TV and I liked what you said. I’m 71 now and Fort Collins has been a very special place for me. I think FC is the right size place for me. The people at the Northern Colorado Linux Users Group have taken me under their wings and I’ve learned so much from them.

Sent by Shorter Rankin from Fort Collins, CO

Ottawa: a capital choice

Thursday, April 17th, 2008

Balcony shot

Once in awhile, I remember the life I lived before moving to Ottawa, and I get a little shiver of amazement and thankfulness. In Ottawa I have found gainful employment as a journalist, satisfying volunteer work (helping Canadian Maher Arar’s fight against torture), and a community that constantly provides me with inspiration and useful connections. It’s also a great place to run, bike, and swim — things left dormant while living in the suburbs of Vancouver. (As if suburbs are a model for the world!) Or should I say migrating in and out of Vancouver. Working in the ski industry I would move every two years, and every summer I would be struggling to find a new job. I don’t know if it’s just Vancouver, but the job prospects were slim — even with a diploma in tourism management.

In the spring of 2003 I returned to my home province of Ontario for a visit. The random gatherings of artists and students, the streets bustling with people who were actually stopping to talk to each other…even the brick buildings felt comforting.

So I packed up my things, said good-bye to the partner, and took up journalism at Carleton University. Haven’t looked back! (except perhaps to get those ‘look-at-me-now’ shivers…)

The Rise of the Creative Class helped me make that decision. Now, with a boyfriend in Connecticut and a Canadian magazine market (that looks weak in comparison to it’s U.S. counterpart), I’m faced with a new decision…thank goodness for this new book. Gotta write a couple more stories to pay for it…

Sent by Dayanti Karunaratne from Ottawa, Canada.