My name is Natasha and I am from a stupid State. I was raised and educated, and continue to live (despite years away), in this awful swamp of a punch line.
Florida has always been a land of misfits and thieves though, both foreign and domestic: Cocaine Cowboys and Religious Rednecks. Mobsters and Pole Dancers. Grifters and Drifters. Botoxed Belles and Juiced up Guidos. We are very suspicious of one another as a result.
Florida is a place with a lot of money but very little class. It's like a good looking person who gets a pass on their terrible personality and woeful choices. All style, no substance.
There isn't even an intellectual haven in our Red/Purple State, like Texas (Austin) or Wisconsin (Madison). We have a dozen or so Universities and many smart kids go to them but we like to celebrate out football teams more than our Engineering programs.
We try though. In the 2014 Election we almost passed a Medical Marijuana Amendment. We basically have marriage equality now and women can still have legal abortions. So, we're not Mississippi or Alabama (Yay) but we certainly aren't Oregon or Vermont (Boo).
I recently went to an outdoor concert and saw in the faces of the crowd such a longing for more. We want so badly to be cool but we never seem to embrace it. We're like 7th graders at a school dance; trepidations to fly our freak flags, still glancing around for approval.
Maybe it's the heat. We aren't very proactive in our pursuits. Myself included. I would rather sit in my air conditioned home than go outside and make a difference, so nothing interesting or unique ever truly comes together. Even the fancy stuff like ArtBasel or Ultra come at such a high price tag that they aren't really cool -- rich, old guys and tweaked out brats are not the winning formula, guys!
Let's try and be better, Florida. Aren't you tired of the mocking? We have so much that is good: the ocean, the Everglades, the weather in February, the cornucopia of ethnic food, all these new Breweries.
Let's get our politics straight- and to the left- maybe the rest will work itself out? Just think, we might finally be able to hold (and get) our heads high one day soon. Although, did I mention we were also sinking?