Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Where are you from? How do you know?

My linguist friend and I had an interesting discussion last night about who was more "from LA," the future Mrs. Linguist Friend (who has lived in South Carolina for two decades but was raised in LA) or my old college roommate Melani (who was raised in Lynchburg, Virginia but has lived in LA for the last five years.)

He said it's where you were raised and that of course your formative years shape who you are the most. I can see some truth to that, but I said where you decide to live, giving as examples of how the future Mrs. Linguist Friend makes her own food, gardens, and has knitted herself a sweater with multicolored state map on it while Melani bitches constantly that she's not as pretty as the other women in LA, complains about the food everyplace but LA and is in general far more given to both trendiness and complaining than she used to be.

CC has always pretty much been a Northern Virginian/Washingtonian. Raised here, chose to live here. The CSO is in no way a guy from Charlotte, North Carolina. But I know people who grew up in, say, Great Britan, who still seem basically British.

Ok, so what cultures do y'all come from? Which influence who you are the most?



fausto said...

1st 5 years: Rochester, NY
Next 4: Westport, CT
Next 5: Washington, DC
Next 3: Duesseldorf, Germany
Next 5: Washington, DC, again (but attended college in Connecticut)
Next 3: Philadelphia
Next 20 and counting: Boston

I think of myself as being currently from Boston, but originally from Washington more than anywhere else. That's in spite of the fact that I was born in Rochester and spent more time in Connecticut than I did in DC. I think it's because I formed more of my personal identity in DC at ages 9 to 14 than I did in Conn. when I was younger or older.

C. Arenas, FNP-BC said...

I grew up in somewhat suburban Illinois, about 20 minutes East of St Louis, MO.
College in central Illinois (rural).
Moved To Northern CA 10 years ago.

I really see my child life as Midwestern and my adult life as a Californian. My growth has occured here and I feel more at home than I ever did growing up. I certainly carry some traits form the midwestern culture but my identity is from my growth in CA.

jfield said...

I was a fourth generation southern California, born below the Manson Nixon line behind the Orange Curtain as they say.

The weird metastatic growth of tract housing and strip malls that I grew up around seems to be everywhere now.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a good example:
first three years in San Francisco
next 6 years in Marin County
Next three years in San Francisco
next six years in Marin
next year in Berkeley
next two years in Sonoma County
Back to Marin for two years
Two years in Colorado (Rangely)
Back to Marin for a year
next three years in Mendocino County (Willits)
Next eight years in Marin
next nineteen years in San Mateo (40 miles from Marin)

I consider Marin County home. Duh. I say I live in San Mateo. I say I'm "from" San Francisco, which is just across the Golden Gate Bridge from Marin....
Other than school in Colorado, I've lived in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area all my life. I suffered culture shock in Colorado.

JDsg said...

This is an interesting question for me because it's not only about where I've lived, but also what cultural attributes I've picked up along the way. Up through HS, I lived in upstate NY. My family lineage is primarily Irish-English, but I never felt any strong ties to those cultures (my family has lived in America since the Colonial days). Moreover, certain relatives had married Italian immigrants, and I've often felt I grew up Italian, even though I'm not.

After HS, I moved to Arizona where the Italian influence continued, but I was also influenced by Mexican culture as well, having many Mexican-American friends.

Now, the past four years, I've lived in Asia and I've noticed how my thinking and lifestyle has started to assimilate East Asian thought and cultural practices (especially as my wife comes from this area).

So, based on all these different places of residence and cultural influences, I feel like a real mutt. :)

Steven Rowe said...

spent all of my life in rural South and North Carolina (well, do i count a month in rural Florida? and years in colege in spartanburg and rock hill?)
My father's family moved to North Carolina around 300 years ago, staying in the (then) rural costal area.
My parents met in New Orleans, my mother born a Hoosier, graduated high school in Mobile, Al.
I grew up with swamps as the back yard and mules plowing the field accross the street --
I retain the memory of forced segregation and the lie of "seperate but equal"
Ive taught canoeing and wilderness survival skills, Ive seen dolphins jumping beside my canoe in the sound, and have(is this a good weekend to mention this ->) been a guest at two DragonCons --- Ive had my feet in the old south, the new south and the whatever south...
I could never not be a rural southerner - and that is fine with me - it is who I am

Chalicechick said...

Too cool!

TheCSO is at DragonCon right now!


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