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What insider advice would you give someone for surviving where you live?

pete6032

Diamond Member
Dec 3, 2010
5,313
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This could be a tip related to climate, culture, transportation etc. Something you wouldn't know unless you were a local.

Living in the Midwest my advice would be if you haven't ever driven in snow, a good way to learn is to go to an unplowed parking lot and drive around to see how it feels. See what it feels like to lose your grip on the pavement or to fishtail. See what your car can handle, so you know it's limits on the road.

Another tip for big city dwellers - avoid going to beaches after it has rained. E Coli levels in water tend to spike after big rain storms since it washes goose poop and other bird poop into the lakes.
 

[DHT]Osiris

Diamond Member
Dec 15, 2015
8,558
4,561
146
Be prepared to spend far more on housing than you think, like NYC pricing.

It's a LOT windier and colder at the higher elevations around here than you'd expect, like 55mph winds, -30 wind chills in the winter.

Stay the fuck out of Syracuse under most circumstances, but definitely in winter. If it's winter, it's snowing in Syracuse. If it's snowing near Syracuse, it's a blizzard in Syracuse. Place is a snow globe.
 

deadlyapp

Diamond Member
Apr 25, 2004
5,897
347
126
(Houston)
Make sure you have remote start on your vehicle
Ideally, have a taller vehicle since when it rains (and it rains) you don't want to get stuck
Make sure you research where you live - you can easily end up somewhere that is a prime flood zone
Own a lot of nice breathable clothing - the summer (May through October) is miserable.
 

pete6032

Diamond Member
Dec 3, 2010
5,313
1,131
136
8. Finding the right neighborhood can be tricky
The truth is, it’s hard to sum up Chicago’s culture because it varies drastically from one neighborhood to another.

Diverse neighborhoods mean lots of variety, but they also make the entire city feel fragmented at times. Figuring out which parts of West Side or South Side are too sketchy for your comfort zone might take a bit of careful research. And you’ll probably mix up Lincoln Square and Logan Square for your first year here.

While many neighborhood choices may be a positive for some, it can be a tough concept for others to grasp—and if you’re not wildly excited by the idea of living in a city that doesn’t always feel totally unified, it’s something to consider.
So basically don't move to Chicago because you will have too many options of where to live?
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
105,788
20,647
136
Stay off the Crackhead Expressway (aka: 295). You be dead, probably.

DMVA
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
105,788
20,647
136
Rain a slight, gentle bend in the road at reasonable speeds fucks up traffic on the Capital Beltway and you might die from it.
ftfy. not sure if there is really any statistical difference between the two. :D
 
Nov 8, 2012
19,711
4,431
136
(Houston)
Make sure you have remote start on your vehicle
Ideally, have a taller vehicle since when it rains (and it rains) you don't want to get stuck
Make sure you research where you live - you can easily end up somewhere that is a prime flood zone
Own a lot of nice breathable clothing - the summer (May through October) is miserable.
Also work remotely.
Or enjoy that everytime you go anywhere it's going to be at MINIMAL 45 minutes there and 45 minutes back - thats regardless of rain or shine or rush-hour vs. not rush-hour, and weekday vs. weekend. Obvious exception for neighborhood grocery store down the street.
Also live outside of Houston in the 'burbs unless you want shit schools, and overpriced properties (which in turn result in high property tax)
Galveston is a shithole, don't let anyone convince you otherwise.
Our sports teams can have all the money in the world and they will still suck balls.

Also, make sure to carry uninsured insurance.
 

lxskllr

No Lifer
Nov 30, 2004
54,586
4,596
126
So basically don't move to Chicago because you will have too many options of where to live?
I take it to mean "Don't move to Chicago cause your 'not too bad' neighborhood might be crackhead central next year."
 

Torn Mind

Diamond Member
Nov 25, 2012
5,162
494
126
I take it to mean "Don't move to Chicago cause your 'not too bad' neighborhood might be crackhead central next year."
One should be more than willing to put aside fears and integrate with crackheads and the 'hood of lesser endowed. Nothing more caring than being up close and personal.
 
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Nov 8, 2012
19,711
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I take it to mean "Don't move to Chicago cause your 'not too bad' neighborhood might be crackhead central next year."
I've traveled to Chicago numerous times for client work over the years. I would simplify it down to a few items....

1) Public transit is there, but it's also ancient as shit and run down. When it's 3:00 and taking a taxi to the airport is just as fast as taking the orange line then your public transit is shit.
2) Overall job-markets are moving away from urban cities and moving more towards suburbs and other cities, see articles on where the hottest job markets are.
3) Yes, spotty neighborhoods - basically either live North or you run the risk of being near shitty parts.

Lastly...

4) The high taxation of Chicago alone should make anyone want to move. Most states/cities rely on 2 of the 3 types of taxes - Income taxes, Property taxes, and Sales taxes. Chicago (and IL in general, really) is one of the biggest cases where it relies on ALL 3 - and all 3 are substantially high.
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
105,788
20,647
136
I've traveled to Chicago numerous times for client work over the years. I would simplify it down to a few items....

1) Public transit is there, but it's also ancient as shit and run down. When it's 3:00 and taking a taxi to the airport is just as fast as taking the orange line then your public transit is shit.
2) Overall job-markets are moving away from urban cities and moving more towards suburbs and other cities, see articles on where the hottest job markets are.
3) Yes, spotty neighborhoods - basically either live North or you run the risk of being near shitty parts.

Lastly...

4) The high taxation of Chicago alone should make anyone want to move. Most states/cities rely on 2 of the 3 types of taxes - Income taxes, Property taxes, and Sales taxes. Chicago (and IL in general, really) is one of the biggest cases where it relies on ALL 3 - and all 3 are substantially high.
1) wow--so driving to the airport is faster than a train in some place? You know that's in most places, right? It's not unusual at all. For someone who claims to travel a lot to many places, you don't have much daily experience with PT to appreciate this general reality. Maybe you're thinking about places where traffic is so universally bad, that trains are more commonly quicker. If anything, you're making an argument for traffic in Chicago being pretty good. ....the big problem with the El, though, is that it's great if you want to get somewhere along the lake, but for the rest of the city, it's very bus dependent. Orange line, you're talking about Midway. I used to work at UofC and lived up North in Lakeview. It was about 1.5 hour commute either way: El + bus. If I drove along LSD, which was pretty decent at those times because I was going against commute traffic, it sometimes took only 20 or 30 minutes. ...and this is compared to the Red line, which is much faster than the other lines because about 1/3rd of it is underground. That trip I took is analogous to your downtown to Midway comparison trip (Same situation here in DC: driving to work can now take between 30-80 minutes, depending on route and traffic; taking the train+walk is about 1.5 hours, again.)

2) Some jobs are moving to suburbs, but people still like to live in the city, or they just move to the suburb and still like to work and commute to the city. People don't really make this work well for themselves. Just look at SF--pretty much all the people that can afford to live there, don't work in SF. They commute an hour+ away to those stripmall suburbs that they don't want to live in, because they want the fancy life. The same has been true in Chicago and most other big Metro areas for a very long time. All that really seems to change is that the area just gets bigger and sprawlier, and traffic gets worse because no one wants to make proper decisions about work-life balance.

^Yeah, I know I am living the same life right now that I bitch about up here, but this current job is new and I went from a ~30 minute walk to work, which I planned and chose about 4 years ago, to an unplanned transition to this new job, which I couldn't really turn down; but also no rational way to move closer to new work because the costs over there are....lol. :\
 
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K1052

Lifer
Aug 21, 2003
36,579
10,550
136
1) Public transit is there, but it's also ancient as shit and run down. When it's 3:00 and taking a taxi to the airport is just as fast as taking the orange line then your public transit is shit.
Taxi cost will easily be 10 times the CTA fare and if both are equal time it's a pretty good deal, especially if you can't expense it and are solo. Anywhere around rush periods the drive will be longer for a loop-airport trip. The system is old but well maintained functionally.
 
Nov 8, 2012
19,711
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Orange line, you're talking about Midway. I used to work at UofC and lived up North in Lakeview. It was about 1.5 hour commute either way: El + bus. If I drove along LSD, which was pretty decent at those times because I was going against commute traffic, it sometimes took only 20 or 30 minutes. ...and this is compared to the Red line, which is much faster than the other lines because about 1/3rd of it is underground. That trip I took is analogous to your downtown to Midway comparison trip (Same situation here in DC: driving to work can now take between 30-80 minutes, depending on route and traffic; taking the train+walk is about 1.5 hours, again.)
Of course it was midway. I would honestly rather go to the next nearest city and DRIVE to Chicago than fucking fly into o'hare. It is the biggest piece of shit airport I've ever been to - and thats saying a lot since I've been to LaGuardia too. Fuck o'hare. Fuck it all the way.

It's the only place I've ever been to that we landed... waited 40 minutes for a gate (ok, that happens)... THEN waited an addition HOUR because they couldn't get a fucking gate operator to just bring it to the door of the plane. It's the epitome of human laziness and shit workers.

Anyhow, you get my main point. If I look on google maps and see red on all the highways in the 3rd most populated city in the US - taking a subway/tram/public transit (outside of buses) should be unquestionably faster. If it's not, then your public transit sucks. I don't know why you feel the need to valiantly defend their shit infrastructure, I'm ultimately saying more money needs to be put into it... along with getting more hobos out of it.
 
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IronWing

No Lifer
Jul 20, 2001
61,846
14,981
136
Tucson:

You can trust the food at the roach coaches. Pima County has very strict health code enforcement.

Don't move here if you can't buy. Tucson and Pima County (and Arizona in general) have zero code enforcement on rental properties. If it's for rent, it's a slum.

If you walk, prepare to die. People simply do not care if they run over pedestrians.

Everything has thorns, claws, or fangs.
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
105,788
20,647
136
Of course it was midway. I would honestly rather go to the next nearest city and DRIVE to Chicago than fucking fly into o'hare. It is the biggest piece of shit airport I've ever been to - and thats saying a lot since I've been to LaGuardia too. Fuck o'hare. Fuck it all the way.

It's the only place I've ever been to that we landed... waited 40 minutes for a gate (ok, that happens)... THEN waited an addition HOUR because they couldn't get a fucking gate operator to just bring it to the door of the plane. It's the epitome of human laziness and shit workers.

Anyhow, you get my main point. If I look on google maps and see red on all the highways in the 3rd most populated city in the US - taking a subway/tram/public transit (outside of buses) should be unquestionably faster. If it's not, then your public transit sucks. I don't know why you feel the need to valiantly defend their shit infrastructure, I'm ultimately saying more money needs to be put into it... along with getting more hobos out of it.
Everyone agrees: O'Hare is the worst. It's just...the worst (OK, I put Newark below it). No matter the posted departure time, O'Hare flights = minimum +30min to that time. No matter what. Not sure if that's changed much in the last 14? years since I've been flying in and out of there, but I imagine so.

Also, Midway has the Potbelly right at the primary terminal, so that wins. Always.

Anyway, I'm not sure what it would actually cost, but CTA being primarily elevated, on very old tracks, I think will trap it into that state for a long time; at least the older Brown and Red Line tracks from the Loop north. There's probably also a shitload of NIMBYISM of people that absolutely do not want to aesthetics of the line to change in their neighborhoods, let alone the near-permanent construction that it would mean. Yes, it is indeed very slow and unpredictable but eh, that's part of its charm? It's still a quicker ride to the airports than compared to say, a lot of the Bay Area and trying to get to fricking Dulles, or BWI out here. National Airport is super quick here, but I really hate that airport. My anxiety can't handle the landings and takeoffs, lol.
 
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Torn Mind

Diamond Member
Nov 25, 2012
5,162
494
126
Everyone agrees: O'Hare is the worst. It's just...the worst (OK, I put Newark below it). No matter the posted departure time, O'Hare flights = minimum +30min to that time. No matter what. Not sure if that's changed much in the last 14? years since I've been flying in and out of there, but I imagine so.

Also, Midway has the Potbelly right at the primary terminal, so that wins. Always.

Anyway, I'm not sure what it would actually cost, but CTA being primarily elevated, on very old tracks, I think will trap it into that state for a long time; at least the older Brown and Red Line tracks from the Loop north. There's probably also a shitload of NIMBYISM of people that absolutely do not want to aesthetics of the line to change in their neighborhoods, let alone the near-permanent construction that it would mean. Yes, it is indeed very slow and unpredictable but eh, that's part of its charm? It's still a quicker ride to the airports than compared to say, a lot of the Bay Area and trying to get to fricking Dulles, or BWI out here. National Airport is super quick here, but I really hate that airport. My anxiety can't handle the landings and takeoffs, lol.
Once they get that Silver Line down though, getting to Dulles will be a bit easier for those without cars.
 

K1052

Lifer
Aug 21, 2003
36,579
10,550
136
Everyone agrees: O'Hare is the worst. It's just...the worst (OK, I put Newark below it). No matter the posted departure time, O'Hare flights = minimum +30min to that time. No matter what. Not sure if that's changed much in the last 14? years since I've been flying in and out of there, but I imagine so.
For departures LGA is at the very top of my shit list. One drop of moisture and everything goes to hell there because of NYC airspace. ORD has gotten much better as the airfield reconfiguration nears completion. Southwest just announced service there too.

Also, Midway has the Potbelly right at the primary terminal, so that wins. Always.
Regrettably closed in 2017.
 

pete6032

Diamond Member
Dec 3, 2010
5,313
1,131
136
I'm ultimately saying more money needs to be put into it... along with getting more hobos out of it.
They are putting money into it but it takes a while to see results. It would help if people from a certain political persuasion actually supported using taxpayer money for infrastructure that supports the economy.
$90 million Brown line connector project, 2015
$492 million Blue line O'Hare project, 2014
$2.1 billion Red Purple modernization, 2019

Also your continued assertion that the Orange line to Midway is slower than a Taxi has been disproven before.

If you leave downtown at 3PM during the week it can take anywhere between 30 and 60 minutes. Even with light traffic, downtown to Midway is about 30 minutes, which is the same amount of time as driving.
 
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