In continuing The Revolting Blog's recent obsession with lists, we will today tackle one of the more controversial subjects imaginable: regional significance. Everybody out there always thinks their own shit is the greatest, which is why it should come as no surprise that everyone wants to rep their own city as being the best city. Well, if that's what you think about your own city, you're wrong. Unless of course you happen to live in the place that is listed number one on the following run-down. The term 'best' is itself a controversial one...because what's it supposed to allude to, exactly? Greatest entertainment, most excitement, best food, best nightlife, classiest callgirls? Any of these can serve as a valid criterion, but really it's EVERYTHING, smooshed together into one impossibly big pile of awesomeness. Most importantly though--as I myself am hardly a 'city' person--these cities are ranked based upon how much awesomeness you can expect to absorb within a limited exposure. I am not trying to tell you the best cities to live in, I'm more concerned with concentrated doses of frivolity, and as such, the following rankings are fairly obvious (note--Vegas, shimmering shitshow that it is, cannot be included on this list for the simple reason that it's not a real place...if I included Vegas I'd have to include Epcot Center® and then I'd just end up getting sued by Disney):
Honorable Mention: D.C. (Chocolate City)
The Nation's Capital has come a long way since the War of 1812, when it was nearly burned to the ground by those assholes from England. The last 20 years in particular have seen an urban renaissance like few other cities in the country. A place that was traditionally reserved for politicians, lobbyists and crackheads, is now home to young professionals and a lot less murders. That's always good for business. DC has some incredible restaurants, and a vibrant nightlife--albeit concentrated into small pockets like Adam's Morgan and Georgetown. Bonus points for re-electing a mayor whose only defense, after being caught on camera smoking crack, was, "the bitch set me up!"
10.) Atlanta (Hotlanta)
One of the only things that makes the South worth visiting is this surprisingly cosmopolitan enclave sprawled across the landscape of otherwise bumblefuck Georgia. There are a slew of great beer bars and intimate music venues here that make Hotlanta a legitimate destination city and not just an airport layover kinda town. It's sad that the South will always be remembered as Civil War losers, because when it comes to home-cooked country cuisine, they are straight up winning.
9.) San Diego (America's Finest City)
San Diego has the best weather of any city in the country, hands down. It's beaches are superb, the streets are predominantly clean and Three's Company took place here for frick's sake. It is also home to one of the world's most impressive zoos--if caged animals is your thing. But what always keeps me coming back for more are the cheap and delicious tacos. Which is ironic, because the only thing discouraging me from moving here is their proximity to Mexico.
8.) Seattle (The Emerald City)
The birthplace of Grunge also gave the world some enjoyable music as well...like Jimi Hendrix and Kenny G--I kid, I just wanted to be the first person in history to put Jimi Hendrix and Kenny G in the same sentence. And again. Unfairly criticized for its remarkably shitty weather, the naysayers often overlook the breathtaking beauty of a Seattle summer. So what if you have to put up with 226 cloudy days a year? It's a small price to pay for admittance into one of the country's best music scenes. You're also rewarded with nearby access to some of the most pristine wilderness in the lower 48. A nice day in Seattle, backdropped by a gorgeous view of Rainier looming over the horizon will make you a believer.
7.) Miami (Little Havana)
There's so much more to Miami than just cocaine. Excuse me, I meant to say, there's just so much more cocaine in Miami. But don't hold that against this sexy city which is home to some of the best nightlife, most colorful architecture and excessively flamboyant people on the planet. South Beach is always rocking, the exotically gorgeous women are always dressed to kill and Cuban culture is on full display everywhere you look. So if you like mojitos, paella, coffee that's stronger than crack, and athletes that are cockier than John Holmes, Miami might be just the place for you.
6.) Boston (Beantown)
If it weren't for all those damn Massholes I wouldn't hesitate to put this historic city in the top 5. But the sad truth is that there's probably never been a group of schmucks so less deserving of an awesome home than Bostonians in Boston. Yet somehow Beantown manages to be an alluring place to be in spite of all those drunken douche bags that are always looking for a fight and whose lives are based almost exclusively around rooting for a team that has won two championships in the past 93 years. Sounds like a real uplifting existence. Always a top-rate college town, Boston is wicked loaded with loud bars and cheap drinks. It's a tiny place, which is limiting, but it's also the source of it's greatest supposed asset: it's charm. They also don't allow minorities within city limits, which any traditional (non-non-reverse) racist will appreciate.
5.) Chicago (The Windy City)
If it weren't for Chi-town, there would literally NEVER be a reason to get out of your car while driving from the Northeast to the West. The Windy City makes the midwest worthwhile and it almost lives up to it's inferior claim of being the Second City. But there's nothing wrong with being second best here--aside from some of the harshest winters imaginable. They have an amazing music scene, home to some of the world's greatest jazz and blues musicians, and these people know how to fucking eat! It's also a much cleaner and far nicer city than most others its size.
4.) New Orleans (The Big Easy)
This continually-running party known as a city is one of the most thoroughly entertaining places on the planet. If you're not having a good time in 'N'awlins' you're either Mormon, or you're getting mugged. Rarely in your life do you encounter such a large group of people so fervently devoted to letting the good times roll. Even though it hosts two of the country's most outrageous parties--in Mardi Gras and Jazz Fest--you can stumble into the French Quarter on any given night of the year and expect to find incredible live jazz, retardedly strong booze drinks and scantily clad women. It's America's least American city in all the right ways.
3.) San Francisco (Fog City)
SF is hand's down one of the most picturesque cities in the world. Built atop a narrow peninsula of rolling hills sandwiched between breathtaking bay and majestic ocean, San Fran is so much more than just a pretty postcard. The second most densely populated city in the country packs an impossibly powerful punch, with an incredibly diverse array of inhabitants and irrefutable cultural significance. It houses the country's best beer, wine, marijuana and restaurant scenes, squishing them all into a city of well under one million people.
2.) Los Angeles (City of Angels)
Perhaps no city on this list has as many detractors as LA. But when people badmouth the City of Angels I'm always perplexed; it is literally thousands of different places at once. To say you hate it all--in one blanket statement--surely means you must hate life, in general. True, Los Angeles has a big set of balls for grouping together all of these loosely knit communities into a completely non-organic 'whole.' But I dig variety and I dig energy and Los Angeles has both of these crucial elements on lockdown. Hip nightlife, incredible weather and the best-looking girls in the world. What are people complaining about, exactly?
1.) New York (The Big Apple)
I apologize for the predictability here, but clearly New York is regarded as The City for a reason: it is the yardstick by which all other metropoles are measured...and all others come up short. Huey Lewis broke the news most aptly when he declared, "where else can you do a half a million things, and all at a quarter to three?" You like Huey Lewis and the News?
With a population greater than the 2nd and 3rd largest cities in the country, COMBINED--New York is a daily conceptualization of the notion that Bigger IS Better. It's also the most profound epitomization of human society--for better and worse--ever realized in the modern era.