Is Lexington Really a Loveless City?

We’re getting another snowstorm this morning.  At least an inch fell last night, and an accumulation of 4-5 inches is expected.  Good thing I’m off from work, due to the President’s Day holiday.  If I don’t leave home today, you’ll know why.

Kentucky Takes Another Wallop of Winter Weather

Now here’s something I forgot to mention in my messages over the weekend.  Last week a news website called The Daily Beast published a list of 104 American cities, ranked by your chances of finding a life partner there:

Best (And Worst) Cities to Find Love

At the top of the list was Long Beach, CA.  No real surprise there; with California’s reputation, you’d expect its cities to do well.  My former home town, Orlando, FL, came in at #32, because of its excellent night life (they probably included the theme parks there).  However, Lexington, KY, the place where I live now, ranked dead last.  No wonder our local in-law, Gene King, didn’t get married until Leive’s niece arrived here.

For the rankings, The Daily Beast used five criteria:  the percentage of single people in the population, how many restaurants and bars are in the area, overall emotional health, the number of marriages, and the number of divorces.  Finally, they listed a place in each city as the “romantic hotspot.”  For Lexington they picked a strange location; instead of someplace downtown, near the University of Kentucky, the hotels and Rupp Arena, the romantic hotspot is Arirang Garden, a Korean restaurant located three miles from our house.  Wait until I tell Leive about this . . .

If I was making that list, I don’t think I would figure the rankings the same way.  For a start, why is a restaurant or bar considered the best place to meet that special someone?  Luckily I stopped being single long before I moved to Lexington, but if I wasn’t, I can think of plenty of other places where I’d look first.  The mall.  Any sporting event.  Anything happening on or near the UK campus; didn’t they take into account that this is an overgrown college town?  Barnes & Noble; don’t bookstores have coffee shops so that intelligent people can socialize?  Church activities.  If I was still in school, my classmates would be possibilities.  And so forth.  Moreover, does anyone really believe you can choose the right spouse, in a place where you’re probably drunk and can’t get a good view of what’s happening a few feet away? Contrary to what we saw on “Cheers,” I have yet to find a bar that is clean, well-lit, and full of happy and interesting people.  Maybe that is why the divorce rate is high–people are looking for love in all the wrong places.

To finish, I’m noticing a disturbing pattern.  Whenever somebody makes a list ranking cities or states, Lexington/Kentucky usually comes out as one of the worst places, where that statistic is concerned.  For example, a year or two ago, Lexington was reported as the city with the worst infestations of pollen, mold and fungus.  Then we were called the most environmentally unfriendly city, because we burn coal for electricity and don’t have suburbs or an elaborate mass transit system.  And I can’t remember how many times we were declared obese, unhealthy, uneducated, or just plain poor.  For me Kentucky has been quite nice, but folks out of state reading those lists must think we’re a real hell-hole.  That explains why we don’t have crowds of people moving in, like we had in Florida.  And now I know why a co-worker once told me that other states may claim to be “God’s Country,” but Kentucky is “God’s Best-Kept Secret.”

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