One night while my friends and I are were hanging out, we started to do something a bit crazy and really funny – we started describing the cities we were from as if they were boys we could date. What was good about them (he’d always dress well), what was wrong with them (they always care more about their money than you), and the downright ruthless (they still live with their parents).
By the time we’d gotten through half a dozen cities we couldn’t stop laughing and I suddenly thought, “we’re on to something here, why is this so funny?” So here are personifications of your favorite American cities from the people who know them best, their residents…
If a guy has ever insisted you call him “Papi,” odds are he’s from Miami and for that, I’m sorry. They exclusively wear bro-tanks to a state school they have a die hard connection to, despite never attending, to show off their upper-arm cross tattoos. When they aren’t deep in a conversation about how Ultra should really be considered more of an “out-of-body experience” than a music festival, they can be found frantically googling Pitbull lyrics and shopping for gold chains.
They most likely live at home, but it’s totally cool cause their parents don’t mind when they bring girls home, and his mom will most likely make you cafe con leche in the morning. They speak exclusively in Spanglish (pro tip: they do not speak actual Spanish) and will most likely spend 6-8 hours a day in the gym. When they aren’t at the gym or the club, find them at Church pretending they didn’t spend all night doing lines of coke. A date typically consists of meeting his entire family, having his grandma plan the wedding and asking why you aren’t pregnant yet.
He’ll tell you he wants to see you again, forget who you are, then match with you on Tinder a week later and message you at 3 am “u up.” He’ll pretend to be into art, but he really just goes to Wynwood to pick up girls posing in front of the graffiti walls. Most likely majored in Communications or Business, definitely was in a frat, and never missed the opportunity to make a guns show joke when in said bro-tank. You “date” briefly, your parents hate him and say you can do better, but you love his mom so much you don’t want it to end. You eventually call it quits and have to avoid eye contact at the cuban bakery, but still text his mom on occasion.
His dad most likely went to Hopkins on a lacrosse scholarship and theres a 67% chance the latest residence hall the university is putting up is paid for with some of his family’s money. Played lax in high school but didn’t start because 30 years ago the coach and his dad got into a tiff that neither of them have plans to get over. Listens to frat rap for fun, but you try not to think about that because he comes from a good family and knows everyone in the tri-state area.
Takes you on a date to the aquarium and you aren’t really mad because the tickets were free, so why not? Puts his arm around you in the jellyfish exhibit so you’re convinced it’s something serious. Still wears mid-calves even though he’s approaching his mid-twenties, hasn’t cut his hair in a while but girls are suckers for “flow” and he doesn’t want to fight that logic. His best friends are the guys he went to private high school with, and they all testify that he’s a “pretty chill dude.”
Not too into art, but knows a lot about the ravens and doesn’t hesitate to tell you fast facts even though the last football game you saw was on Remember the Titans – you keep this to yourself because he mentioned his family is going to the lake sometime soon, and you’re trying to get an invite. Lives at home right now but just got a nice spot in fells point. Majored in business at either the University of Maryland, University of South Carolina, or Hopkins. Was in a frat and was into it. You “date” him for 6 months and your mom loves him, but he breaks up with you and 2 months later he’s engaged to the girl he dated all through high school.
Here we have our typical Philly “pop punk trash.” Basically all the scene kids grown up sad-boys, listening to Alex G in Vans and cuffed jeans, smoking mavericks, and riding fixies up their ass. They’re Quaker, know a Quaker, went to Quaker private school. They’re Catholic, used to be Catholic, went to private Catholic school.
They either grew up in the city, are grimy af, and live for it or they grew up in the rich suburbs, are still pretty grimy af, and honestly still live for it. They’ve tried every drug in vogue (even those kind of off the beaten path ones that you hear about in slightly less mainstream rap songs), but hey they’ve also tried all the drugs that aren’t popular and “honestly could stop whenever they felt like it.” They’re proud of their city, of being from the East Coast (even though that’s not what they’ll first identify as), and all the mixed up, messed up parts of them they got from being from Philly. Oh, and chrome bags, so many chrome bags.
The most culturally refined out of the southern gentlemen you’ll meet. He’ll surprise you with his knowledge of art, science, and history but will also get hammered on the weekend and float down a river on an air mattress with his friends.
Has a Bernie sticker on his car and constantly gets shit for it. Smokes weed on a daily basis. Has ridden the metro train five times and thinks he’s #urban. He knows all the best eccentric four star restaurants that are directly next to a dive bar. Would probably let you pay for yourself on a date, but would not let you open the car door. Has noticeable road rage. Works for a startup company that ends up making millions. His style is very metro and he probably has a man bun. He’s bi-sexual and hiding it from his parents. Also thinks he is a rapper.
Boy from LA is the name-dropping opportunist wearing a black or white t-shirt w/ ambiguous phrasing from his friend’s lifestyle start up. Considers his vintage plaid as outerwear. Child of divorce and has a favorite dad hat. Probably used to skate or surf, but definitely loves Mexican food.
You’re introduced to him through a mutual friend and you flirt all night, but things get confirmed when you both swipe right on tinder the next morning. He attempts to find a connection with you through who he knows and it actually kind of works because he’s got 50 mutual friends with you on Facebook, has 1k followers on Instagram, and Eric Andre retweeted his pic on Halloween.
He loves to smoke weed to chill beats reminiscent of the 80s and 90s on soundcloud. Started going to Coachella when he was 13 but swears it hasn’t been the same since Paul Mcartney headlined so has been exploring other festivals. Has high standards for women, but very little experience. Pays for your uber home. Owns yeezys.
Claims to be an SF native but moved from somewhere else in the Bay Area (most likely Marin County). Works in tech (Apple, Google, or Facebook). Doesn’t own a car because he gets free rides to work on the Google bus but owns an expensive bike. Claims to support public transportation but doesn’t recognize the controversies surrounding the Google buses that are making access to public transportation more challenging.
Takes Uber to your date and doesn’t pay for you because he’s a “feminist.” Describes himself as “socially liberal but fiscally conservative.” Always talks about starting a business with his friends but never gets it together. Probably has ironic facial hair if he can grow it. Wears a North Face jacket and most likely wears glasses. Takes you to an upscale farm-to-table restaurant with exposed brick walls and fancy cocktails. Orders craft beer. Insists on playing E-40 at every pregame but also secretly loves G-Eazy.
An alcoholic who loves to eat, but who will always come with me to Sunday Mass after a long Saturday night of partying (as long as their isn’t a Saints football game playing at the same time). Football and Catholicism are his two religions.
All his contradictions concerning everything drive me absolutely crazy, but he always pulls me back with his southern charm and gracious manners. As much as I like to say I want to get the hell away from him because he’s a fundamentally-flawed southern boy, I know I’m just like him – always looking for the strongest Sazerac to complement my Sunday prayers.
A very nice Italian, or Polish, or Irish, or Greek D-bag. He’s an apprentice at an electrician or plumbing company and will eventually join the union and get a job for the city because “school isn’t his thing.” He owns a pair of knock off yeezes and one real Hermes belt that he got for Christmas from his uncle. He comes from a huge family who all live within 5 blocks from his childhood home, which he still lives in with his parents.
He loves his grandmother more than he will ever love anyone else. He’s well groomed, good looking, charming, and smooth and he’s damn well knows it. He can charm your mother and complain about the mayor or Obama with your father, so your family loves him. You’re not technically his girlfriend because he doesn’t like labels but you’ve been dating for 3 years now.
On the weekends he will take you out to the bars in Streeterville, or Wrigleyville, or River North where he’s friends with the bouncer. You’ll end up leaving hours before him, and when you go to his apartment the next morning you’re greeted by the bartender from the bar who he managed to charm back to his apartment, but you’re not his girlfriend so it’s ok.
His daddy got him a job at an oil and gas company. His favorite thing to do is Sunday-Funday which essentially means he likes to sit at a patio bar for six hours and drink all Sunday while socializing with his fellow oil and gas employees.
Describes himself as a “southern gentleman” but isn’t really that southern (he owns, like, one pair of boots and visits his family ranch a couple times a year) and isn’t really a gentleman either. He graduated from UT or A&M and goes on bi-annual trips to this place called New Orleans with his frat boys from college. Takes himself less seriously than someone from Dallas but still a little too seriously.
Brooklyn is ‘damaged.’ He’s sure you’ll never truly understand what challenges he had to overcome in life to end up where he is now. He complains he has no money and will definitely let you split the check on the first date, but he has a $2,000 tattoo on his arm, and his parents still pay his rent (he’s 26).
He’s pretty sure he’ll never find ‘the one.’ He’s just a lot harder to understand than most guys. This is probably because he is a self proclaimed feminist, but has spent more time mansplaining feminism to you than asking you what you think about it. Or maybe you just notice it more because of how often he brings up how progressive he is?
He’ll make sure you know he’s okay with you having a better job than him. He reminds you that he could have just as good a job (if not a better one), but he’s taking one for the team, because he is comfortable with his masculinity.