I just love it when other people's painstakingly conducted research confirms my gut feelings, sneaking suspicions, and ill-informed observations.
The other day, The Wall Street Journal published an article entitled "The United States of Mind." Haven't you ever felt like a certain state just had a certain kind of vibe? Or that all the people from [state] are just a certain way? This article quantified those kinds of general impressions and turned them into a nifty, color-coded map for our judgment-making convenience.
I love Oregon. I really do. I grew up there, so of course that has a lot to do with it. When asked what it is I like about Oregon, though, there's not a lot I can say. I like the greenery, I like the proximity of both the mountains and the beach, and I even like the weather. But those are all boring, non-dynamic physical attributes. What I really want to be able to say is that I love Oregon because of what it is, or rather, what its people make it.
Thanks to this new research, I think I can safely say that I love Oregon because it is introverted, agreeable, moderately neurotic, and open.
You know where else I really enjoyed living? Vermont. And take a look at its stats, specifically how it compares with Oregon:
When we were in Vermont, I could tell there was some intangible quality that made Vermont and Oregon similar, beyond all the greenery and recycling weirdos. And now my suspicions are proved correct.
And I always knew there was just something about Arizona that I wouldn't be able to get over, even if I did manage to fall in love with rock yards and unkempt transients hanging around everywhere:
Compared with the kind of state that I love, Arizona is slightly too extroverted, not agreeable enough, way too conscientious, and not very open.
Finally, a way to put the feeling of "I just don't really like it here" into words.
How about your states?