Social Question

Blackberry's avatar

Is any city really better than another?

Asked by Blackberry (31011points) July 19th, 2011

Of course some can in general, but I’m referring to a lot of the “10 best cities to live” lists and things like that. Of course no one is going to find the best city for them because there’s always going to be one thing that you don’t want. Does it really come down to if there’s a job waiting there for you?

This isn’t a question about what city is the best to live in, it’s about if our studies and opinion really matter to one individual, instead of a group of people.

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13 Answers

cockswain's avatar

I’d say climate and culture vary in those lists. The cultures have their own unique flavors from city to city, but weather ends up being really important to me. Huge difference between San Fran and Boston, even though they are both awesome places.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Some cities attract more individuals with “individualistic” ideals, whereas some cities attract people that are “community” minded. The studies are certainly geared to generalize.

If you were to be able to choose in a job transfer or a job offer between two cities, the studies come in handy to help you choose which of the two you’re deciding between are more closely linked with your personal lifestyle.

DeanV's avatar

I think so.

I’d take Seattle over Los Angeles any day.

Zaku's avatar

Cities are all different in various ways. Which one is better is subjective – in other words, it depends on which of those different things each person prefers, whether it is better for them or not.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

Such distinctions can be based on empirical criteria such as cost of living, crime rates, availability of desirable amenities (symphonies, theatres, fine restaurants, large parks with excellent well-maintained facilities, lakes, rivers, forests). Cities do differ in measurable ways that influence the quality of life for residents.

marinelife's avatar

The studies use measurements that many people would apply so they have value. What they can’t capture is the flavor of a place, the surroundings, the character of the inhabitants.

zenvelo's avatar

@dverhey 98 times out of 100 I would choose Seattle over Los Angeles too. But if I had a well paying job and could live and work in, say, Pacific Palisades or Santa Monica, the weather could easily convince me to move there.

My problem with the top ten lists is that they change every year; one year it’s Montpelier or Santa Fe, next it’s Portland or Chapel Hill.

And one last thing: in therapy, one often learns that wherever you move, you’re still there. Moving doesn’t fix the problem. Just because I move to Portland doesn’t mean I am going to ride a fixie every morning to the independent bookstore/coffee house.

cockswain's avatar

Just because I move to Portland doesn’t mean I am going to ride a fixie every morning to the independent bookstore/coffee house.

Awesome. Don’t move to Minneapolis if you hate that. My brother lives there. It is the hipster capital of the world. I had the “honor” of going in a Whole Foods there. I had to laugh at what I saw.

zenvelo's avatar

@cockswain I work in San Francisco, full of hipsters that get mad if you call them hipsters.

cockswain's avatar

Sometimes the truth hurts.

jerv's avatar

Define “better”.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

San Francisco, Paris, Prague does not equal Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston. Yes, some cities are far better than others.

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