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Old 10-15-2002, 06:51 PM   #26
Kevin Wilbanks
Location: Seattle/Southern Wisconsin
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 788
I wouldn't say it's almost anyplace. I've been all over the US, and I'd say that this is the most culturally vacuous place I've ever been - especially for the size. I have talked to many people who have lived here or in nearby Gainesville who agree: there is something terribly wrong with Jacksonville. There are two segments of the population here: poor and military/ex-military. Any city in California has to be a whole different world.

To give you an idea, in terms of participation in Aikido, there was roughly ten times as much activity where I used to live, in a city of 1/10th the size: hence, cultural defecit factor = 1:100. I would say in terms of live music, the factor is more like 1:1,000,000. I got so desperate that I recently drove a total of 750 miles and spent over $300 just to attend one decent show (Neko Case) at a nightclub. Roughly 5% of the interesting films I hear about from fellow film geeks online actually hit theaters here. Blockbuster is the only rental option. There are no independent bookstores or music stores. There is no 'entertainment/nightclub district', and I have been unable to find any kind of bar that is not either a strip mall sports bar/pool hall or something along the lines of "Chili's". The last statistic I saw rated Jax as one of the ten worst cities in the US for violent crime. The city's sole claim to cultural fame is that Lynard Skynard came from here, and if you notice, many of their lyrics are about shootings, barfights, and anaesthetising oneself into oblivion, or some combination thereof. I'm just getting revved up here. Did I mention that complaining has become my principal hobby?
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