Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Flyover country

Nebraska's are all familiar with the fact that millions of Americans living in big cities and on the coasts are geographically challenged. It happens like this: you encounter someone from Massachusetts in the airport lounge in Atlanta, and strike up a conversation. "Where are you from?" she asks. "Nebraska," you respond. "Oh," she says, "I love Las Vegas!"

There are, however, major advantages to living in flyover country, among which is that you generally can figure out east, west, north, and south--even up and down--quite a bit better than your fellow citizens in more populous places. Smug in the knowledge that Lincoln is actually the 72nd largest city in the USA, I simply smile at the misconceptions harbored by those who navigate by subway stops and freeway numbers.

So, I'm sitting in the living room yesterday morning, reading the news on my MacBook and encounter a bunch of links to news stories about the FBI's annual release of their statistical report, Crime in America. One of the links is to an online database at the Detroit Free Press. I'm always interested in these journalistic data projects, so I followed the link, and went to look up Lincoln--just to ensure the data was accurate.

Low and behold, Nebraska appears to have left the Union!


Michelle said...

Does that mean you don't have to pay federal taxes anymore?

Anonymous said...

Digging a little further into the FBI data, Lincoln was found by researching cities over 100k. We have now moved to Montana.

Tom Casady said...


Yes! There we are in Montana, along with Omaha, McCook, and every other city in our state.

Anonymous said...

In 1972 I delivered a truck to a business in Brooklyn. I didn't have to be back to work in Nebraska for several days. I called College friends living in the NYC, Boston and Philly areas to let them know I was in the area and they offered me places to crash. I spent the next few days on trains, buses and subways exploring the area. What an adventure!!

"You sure talk funny" a comment I heard in several various forms was an ice breaker that started many interesting conversations. When I told those asking I lived in Nebraska it amazed me how little those Urban residents knew about the rest of the country. But in their defense I did not know what a Bagel was. So hopefully several people learned something about how the other half lives during my trip. I still love Bagels! In fact I just finished a toasted Bagel with Apple Butter while typing this.
Gun Nut

Rory said...

This post reminds me of this old New Yorker cover!