The Family Factor

Most of mine and C’s family live here in Michigan. One could argue that this is a particular compelling reason to stay….

But com on. Be honest. I know there are plenty of people out there that find it easier to deal with family when there is a significant distance between you and them, when you only have to deal with them directly a few times a year. I know that is true for me. I suppose that sounds like a lousy thing to say, and maybe it is. All I know is that when I lived in Kalamazoo, I got along better with my family in general. And frankly, I think they probably liked me better. They might not say that, but I’d be surprised if it wasn’t the case.

I think I can say with some level of confidence that C would prefer to be at a remove from certain elements of her family as well.

In fact, certain…events, shall we say, have made this idea all the more attractive.

It’s a matter of being able to control  your boundries and keeping those that don’t respecty them at bay, sort of like a mote dug to keep zombies away from your fortress.

But it isn’t all about “running away.” Depending on where we moved to, namely California, we’d be moving closer to some family members, those that we’d prefer to be closer to. You know, the ones that don’t seem to feel they have the right to emotionally and psychologically brow beat you simple in service of some delusional construct that they have created in order to help convince themselves that they are descent human beings, when there is so much evidence to the contrary.

But I digress into pettiness. And it isn’t even an election year.

Let’s just say that some family members are so irritating as to induce painful flatulence. And really, who need that. Life is hard enough, and often smelly enough (especially if you live in Gary, Indiana – pee ew; a shout out to the birthplace of MJ), without adding to it.

I wonder, since this is a GenX blog, is this sort of…circumstance common among Genereation X? Certainly familial discord is nothing new. I’m thinking more about in the way one deals with it. I suppose self-righteous boomers might call it running away, except of course when they bolted their mundane midwestern existences to frolick in the streets of Haight Ashbury for the Summer of Love. Wee make love not war — Aaack! And what about Millennials? I suspect that their reason for moving across country from their folks has less to do with putting a buffer between them and their families and more to do with “living life to the fullest” blah blah blah. Not to mention they probably have their helicoptering rents visiting once a month anyway — and actually like it! But perhaps I’m wrong. I’m just guessing here, but I’d bet that a good number of GenXers moved away, or at least would like to move away, from family in large part, though not necessarily entirely, to put some space between them in family, because it’s just easier that way, less of a hassle, you know.


possible relocation destinations

California was at the top of our list but the economic problems there are just as bad if not worse than here in Michigan.

July 2, 2009 | The world’s eighth-largest economy has just gone belly-up. When midnight tolled on Tuesday night with legislators and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger still deadlocked over how to resolve the state’s staggering $24 billion budget shortfall, California became unable to pay its bills. The state will have to begin issuing IOUs to its creditors as early as Thursday. It is the worst budget crisis in the state’s modern history.

Read full story here.

So now Austin, Texas is looking better and better all the time. US News and World Report recently touted it as one of the top 10 cities to live in, along with Boise, Idaho and Albuquerque, NM:

If you’re a free spirit, music junkie, or barbecue lover—or if you simply have what it takes to “keep Austin weird”—Texas’s state capital is for you.

Sounds pretty damn cool to me. Although I understand it gets quite hot there. And there is the issue of possible hurricanes. But perhaps some high winds, uprooted trees, and major flooding would be a nice change of pace from the snow and cold. I’ve pretty  much had it with shoveling snow that’s for sure.

Then there is the Research Triangle in North Carolina, which is attractive b/c of the field C works in. And, I hear it’s nice. Plus I know a few people who already live down there. Would have to do more research, though.

Portland,  OR has come up at times, but not sure C would like the rain. I don’t mind rain, but I don’t want to be wet all the time either. Big on bicycling there, though, and that’s a plus for me. But really I’m an amateur bicyclist at best, which reminds me I need to take my bike into the shop to get the rear wheel trued.

Colorado would be nice. Sure it gets cold and plenty of snow, but it’s sunny. And we could always get a snowblower. I’ve never owned one.

C mentioned Boston the other week. I was surprised, b/c of the cold factor. But it’s a big city, and very cool one at that so she’d be willing to at least try to live with the trade off.

NYC? We’ve never really discussed that as on option. Probably too expensive. And seems a bit too daunting to me.

Nowhere else in the south other than NC holds much interest. And neither of us are interested in living in Florida — nice place to  vacation for maybe a week but don’t want to take up permanent residence there. If Michigan is too cold in winter, Florida is too hot an balmy in summer. Ick!

Of course, we’re open to suggesions.