It's not as if I haven't given Minnesota every benefit of the doubt ~ I've lived here for 20 years. That's a pretty fair trial. But now I'm over it. I once thought North Dakota weather was bad, but here's a revelation ~ western North Dakota is dry. Sure, it's cold in the winter, but one doesn't risk life and limb stepping out on the front stoop. If it's cold, one can come inside and warm up. If you have to drive to work at 5:00 a.m. on ice-packed roads while dodging belligerent pickup drivers, clutching the steering wheel until the blood drains from your hands and uttering Hail Marys are your only frenzied options.
Here are Minnesota's advantages:
- The weather is nice the two months out of the year that are not winter.
- There is a tax on everything that moves...and everything that doesn't. The other day a deer said to me, "You mean I have to pay to cross this road? Government bastards."
- The ten months of the year that are winter.
- The roads are getting more congested by the day. Why people are moving here, I cannot fathom. Native Minnesotans are the second worst drivers in the nation, and now we also have imports from other bad-driving states. I'm guessing they're all from New Hampshire.
- Its citizens keep voting for idiots who want to slap even more taxes on our daily necessities, including heat and water. On the plus side, all my mining equipment is tax-free.
- The state's hapless government can't even manage to issue driver's licenses. Because all the government employees are tasked with finding new things to tax.
- If you think this winter is bad, just wait 'til next year.
- All the medical clinics are booked up with people who've taken a tumble on the ice, so your heart attack will just have to wait.
- Once you've completed your tax return, you find that you owe the state one point two bazillion dollars to fund its "social programs".
- Local news anchors are freakishly upbeat. Especially during ice storms. I believe they are clinically insane.
- "Minnesota nice" is something the residents tell themselves while they passive-aggressively tailgate or cruise along at 35 miles an hour on a 55-mph freeway.
- One could purchase a gated mansion in another state for the same price as the monthly rent on a one-bedroom loft apartment in Minneapolis.
- People worship local disc jockeys. And quote them.
- Bicyclists think they are cars.
- One depletes her meager vacation time taking "weather days".
- No one visits anyone, because it takes one and a half hours and a near-death experience to travel twenty miles to a friend's home.
- Despite its conceit about haute cuisine, the most pernicious eating establishment in the metro complex is Jimmy John's.
I have approximately fifteen months left ~ and then I retire and move the hell out of Minnesota. I can't wait. I'm done ~ over it. My fervent hope is that the state doesn't steal all my money before I can escape.
We have not yet decided where to move. We have some prerequisites ~ low taxes are a given. But a more temperate climate would be awesome; and low crime. A slower pace of life.
If you have recommendations, I would love to hear them. Send them my way.
In the meantime: