Florida: Really? Grief?

Tom in Nevada asks, “Given the amount of grief you give the well deserved Floridians, is there an disproportionate number of subscribers from Florida or maybe a disproportionately low number that might be turned off from the constant, once again well deserved, coverage of their exploits? Just curious.”

Well first, I don’t give Floridians (or, really, the Floridiot subset) grief; they bring it on themselves. As for your question, though, California has about 2x the population of Florida; California has about 3.5x the Premium subscribers of Florida. So I guess I would have to say the latter, if either one must be chosen.

Plenty to Choose From

Some subscribers in Florida complain if I don’t have a Florida story in an issue, so clearly at least some Floridians have a sense of humor! Bottom line, though, I skip a lot of Florida stories because some of them are, well, repetitive. I could probably do an All-Florida issue about once a month, if I really wanted to. Florida is, by far, the weirdest state — much more so than California, which a lot of people assume is weirdest.

Floriduh?So When The Above Ran in the free edition Friday, it brought some response — but at least, not outrage! Walter in Florida was first:

Your answer is 100% correct about the Great State of Florida. I have lived here over 60 years and proud to be living in the weirdest state. Some of the great things we are noted for should not be mentioned. Especially if you live in the South Florida, Hialeah area.

But George (“in Florida with a northern accent”) complains:

Please keep in mind that not everyone who lives in Florida is a Floridiot or even a Floridian. Many of us are transplants from colder climates. I have lived here 13 years and do not consider myself to be a true Floridian (or Floridiot). During those 13 years we’ve only met about a dozen ‘native’ Floridians. If there was a way of checking, you would probably find most of the Floidiots are natives while the majority of your subscribers are transplants. Keep the stories coming.

Well first [grin], you’ll notice that I separated “Floridians” and “Floridiots” to make it clear that not all Floridians are Floridiots. But second, I think part of Florida’s weirdness is specifically due to all the imports: not just them Yankees, but also the Cubans, the Haitians (especially those who practice Vodou [aka Voodoo]), the (gasp!) Californians, and the many other cultural immigrants that make up the mélange that is the Florida population.

Weird does not equal obliviot (Florida-tinged or otherwise)! I think it’s far better to be like Walter and embrace the weirdness, rather than fight it. Fight obliviocy, sure, but when you really get down to it, we’re all weird to some extent. And if you’re not, well, that’s really weird!

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9 Comments on “Florida: Really? Grief?

  1. As a former Floridian and long time “This is True” fan, I enjoy the stories about Florida, and have an opinion about the source of Floridiots. I noticed my fair share while I was a resident there and quite often people that were newly arrived there tended to act in a weird manner as soon as they settled in. Some even acted weirdly when only visiting. Others just slowly sank into oddity. I put the blame often on the sun, which was particularly uncomfortable whenever the humidity pushed toward triple digits. And the preponderance of vacationers out to enjoy themselves, irregardless of the cost or legality, adds to the strange behavior.

    People I met ran from cowboys, doctors, authors, drug addicts, outlaw bikers, multi-millionaires and tourists. Pets often ran to the exotic due to the tropical environment, as a way for people to express themselves.

    I found Florida to be fun and the people mostly very friendly, but in the end I had to escape the climate for somewhere cooler.

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  2. A guy I follow on Live Journal runs a semi regular “Guess the State” poll, based off the headline. The choices are Florida and Hawaii. Unless it involves jet skis or snow, it can be really hard to tell.

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  3. Having lived in Florida for the past 34 years, I’ve come to the conclusion that we have earned our reputation for weirdness because of the stupidity of our politicians. Even the corrupt ones (all but one or two) are so stupid, they get caught. With examples like that, how can we be any different?

    Well, someone is catching the crooked pols! -rc

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  4. I grew up in Florida and moved to California. Now I live in Washington. Am I a Floridian? A Californian? A Washingtonian? I don’t feel like any of those are right. I’m gonna go with “American”.

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  5. Speaking of Florida, my friend who I worked with at The Daily Campus (UConn’s student newspaper) had a summer internship last year copy-editing for a bunch of papers across the country who had outsourced that operation to the office where she worked. Apparently all the interns would fight over who got to handle the Florida police blotters because they were so weird and everyone wanted to read them. (She’s not from Florida, in case you’re wondering.)

    Interesting! -rc

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  6. I’m most definitely a native Floridian, raised in a log cabin in a citrus grove in a swamp. Florida is by far the strangest state, however many of the residents including top politicians, are from elsewhere. It’s hot here and things tend to get a bit crazy when it’s hot. But the citrus is great.

    Good to have the perspective of a life-long native. -rc

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  7. Gotta love Florida. We’re so much fun to watch.

    Where else can you have the modern equivalent of the wild wild west with just a very thin veneer of civilization.
    We wouldn’t want to spook the tourists, now, would we?

    Maybe we should open a floridiot theme park simulating that wild and crazy day to day life here on the big sandbar?
    Just think of all the amusement rides you could come up with. Mr.crackheads wild ride with police in pursuit? Jack that tourist? Drive-by tourist hunting with full auto weapons?

    More fun than a carnival full of low lifes scamming your quarters and dimes!

    The possibilities are endless.

    I’m an easygoing Floridian but I laugh at all the uproar over our “stand your ground” law.

    You really can’t understand why that might be necessary unless you lived here among the Floridiots. Violent, drug and alcohol crazed Floridiots that is.

    And don’t forget our contribution to politics: Electile Dysfunction! Hey, no laughing…just because we can’t count…..

    If you really want to laugh at what happens here check out Grant Peeples on Youtube, particularly the tune “Sunshine State”. He nails the dark side of Florida.

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  8. Can’t say I have been to Florida, but my money goes to Salt Lake City for being the second weirdest place I have been to. A conservative bastion, the heart of Utah is fairly liberal. Salt Lake City streets are huge and underused by Seattle standards — and yet they have a serious problem with pedestrian/car accidents and fatalities. In a city founded by Mormons and strict liquor control winos are common, sacked out on the street. Notice I said ‘weird’, not ‘crazy’. Just weird.

    Absolute, weirdest place I’ve been? Vegas.

    Vegas is indeed an intense concentration of weirdness, and indeed they’ve been featured in many TRUE stories. -rc

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  9. I’m 5th generation Floridian. Yea…I’m weird like most people are in one way or another. I have seen more than one This is True containing pretty much all Florida articles. If you have a lot of people in your state, someone is going to be news worthy! Some of them are obliviots. Some of the articles are Floridians, some transplants. Either way, if you do something stupid, it should hurt. It should remind you not to do it again or that you should not have done it the 1st time!

    An excellent attitude, if I may say. As I recall, there has only been one or two all-Florida issues, but indeed others have had …”several”. -rc

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