Monday, February 20, 2006

The Big News

No, I'm not pregnant. Our big news is that Daddymatic has accepted a job at the University of Utah, so we will be moving to Salt Lake City as of this summer.

I know what you're thinking: But you guys aren't Mormon, are you? No, we're not. But apparently, neither is 60% of the SLC population. So there's that.

This has been a heartwrenching process for the Familymatic--or at least the adult members of the household. Daddymatic's other job offers were in VA and Toronto, Canada. While a HUUUUGE part of me really wants to be back in the South, close to our parents, we both decided that, for now anyway, we need to go where the job seems like it will be the best fit. Daddymatic decided that was Utah, so I'm turning my thoughts away from sweet tea and southern accents and towards learning to say things like "Gooooo UTES!" Also, I am beginning the Convince Bee-bee and Grampy to Move to Utah campaign as well.

To kick off the campaign (and for the sake of my own morale), I'm going to publish a list of the 20 coolest things I was able to find out about Salt Lake City over the weekend. I need your help, though-- if you've heard anything especially funky and/or cool about Salt Lake City (or Utah in general, or heck, even Mormons), now's the time to share. If someone you knew lived in SLC and hated it, I probably don't need to know about that.

Also, if you live in the Far West or California, remind me how much fun it's going to be to be a day's drive or so away from all of you. Also, you could tell me that we *might* get out there in time for me to drive to Blogher, which would be freakin' sweet, as I could finally meet the amazing women in person that I've been so fortunate to ah, "meet" in blogworld. So in the comments, please add stuff I've forgotten and if you have nothing to add, well, some nurturing words of support will substitute just fine.

20 Coolest Things about SLC:

1. The largest parade in SLC is the Days of ‘47 parade, which I think celebrates the day Brigham Young looked at the Wasatch Front and said, “Yup, this is the place. We’re stayin’.” The second largest parade? Utah Pride. I love a city that’s not afraid of its schizoid side.

2. Good football at the U. Plus the view from the stadium is stunning. And the My Cousin Vinny jokes you can do with a team called the Utes is not to be underestimated.

3. Two words: Arena. Football.

4. There’s a zoo, a children’s museum, some great city parks and a fuh-haaabulous public library. Thank you, Mormons, for having many offspring and building a city to accommodate said offspring.

5. SLC is within spittin’ distance of, oh, say, a BILLION national parks: Arches (setting for all Roadrunner/Coyote cartoons), Zion, Bryce, Grand Staircase Escalante, Capitol Reef, etc. It’s right purty in them thar parts.

6. Park City is home to Sundance. And if that’s not indie enough for you, try SlamDance, which is the anti-Sundance. Because you gotta have people for whom Sundance is just, you know, like sooo mainstream and has-been.

7. It’s a dry heat. Plus there will be an approximately 400% increase in Hours of Sunlight, since Central PA, as my friend Jon is wont to say, is “The place where low pressure systems come to stay.”

8. Heavy D will be able to pursue rock climbing, camping, snowboard cross, hiking, cross-country skiing, and snow shoeing, all of which means I get to buy lots of Gear.

9. There will be an IKEA in the area next spring. There is also, apparently, a Roots store. All we need now is a Bojangle’s restaurant, and my retail trifecta will be complete.

10. Donut shops. Plural.

11. Dooce, of course, is from SLC. So the blog vibes are good. Or something.

12. Public transpo that’s not limited to buses.

13. Foods they have in SLC that they do not have here: Thai, Mexican, Moroccan, Afghan, Lebanese, Tibetan, Turkish, Polynesian, Russian, Swiss (are you kidding me? Swiss? OH YEAH.) and Filipino. Thank you, Mormons, for going on missions around the world and being better than the British at bringing back food to spice up your otherwise underwhelming native options.

14. Next week, Motley Crue is playing in SLC. Who’s a has-been now, huh??

15. The state bird of Utah is…the seagull. Bonus points if you know why without Googling it.

16. You can turn around an oxcart on most streets in SLC. Seriously. Brigham Young said so. There are also buckets at each crosswalk with orange flags in them so you can play Crossing Guard EVERY time you cross the street.

17. You know where you are in the city at all times based on the address. For instance, if you’re at 655 East 3400 South, you know you have 34 blocks between you and The Temple. Thank you, Mormons, for being as anal as I am when you laid out your city. (except that in MY city, everything would be relative to MY location. But that’s being nitpicky.)

18. No nonstop flights to Bee-bee and Grampy’s hometown, but there are nonstop flights to a number of Mexican beaches. That takes the edge off of winter (if you’re counting, that’s another TWO reasons why Bee-bee and Grampy need to move to SLC).

19. The Best Friends Animal Sanctuary is in Utah. Having done work with abandoned/abused animals in North Carolina at the Horse Protection Society, this warms the cockles of my heart. Thanks to my friend Elizabeth for remembering one.

20. I can finally train for the sport for which I was born: the art of après ski. The hot cocoa, the silk jammies, the bad mystery novels being read by a fire: what is not to love? In fact, I’m so stoked about this that I’m going to skip the whole skiing thing and go directly to the bon-bon eating part.