I have a secret crush on the state of New Jersey.
I hide my love for the armpit of America well. I joke about the state and the people who live there often, but I’m secretly jealous of New Jerseyites and wish that I lived there too.
You may ask why I would love a state like New Jersey. It’s one of the smelliest states in America (drive through Elizabeth, New Jersey with your windows open if you don’t believe me), you can’t make a left turn anywhere in the entire state, the accents are ridiculously annoying, a lot of the shore towns are beyond trashy, and every summer hoards of horrible “bennies” descend and manage to make the cast of Jersey Shore look classy.
I’m not even going to try to dispute any of the negatives. They’re all true. And not in a charming way. In fact, the unofficial state song, “Born to Run,” is about getting the hell OUT of there.
But New Jersey has a lot going for it that no other state can boast.
For example, it’s hard to hate a state with so many beaches. I love the beach and hate that all Maryland has is Ocean City. For anyone who hasn’t been to Maryland’s Eastern shore, it’s kind of like Seaside Heights from season one of Jersey Shore, but with WAY less hot people. In fact, most of the people in Ocean City, Maryland look like Fat Bastard from the Austin Powers movies.
One of my favorite things about Jersey is that the music scene there is ONLY topped by the music scene in New York City. And it’s close enough to NYC that you can get there easily for other concerts too. I don’t know exactly what it is that makes Jersey bands so good. Maybe it’s something in the water (although even suggesting that jokingly makes me think of Blinky, the three-eyed fish created by the pollution from the nuclear power plant on The Simpsons).
Two of my New Jersey favorites: The Gaslight Anthem and Bruce Springsteen
The New Jersey Turnpike often sucks, especially as you get closer to New York City, but I have to say, New Jersey drivers are WAY better than drivers in most of the rest of the country.
The reason for this is that New Jersey drivers understand that you’re supposed to drive on the right and pass on the left. DC, Maryland, and Virginia drivers don’t get this concept. In Maryland, it’s completely normal to see people driving ten miles per hour under the speed limit in the far left lane. In New Jersey, no one does that unless they’re from out of state. I’d trade our left turns for drivers who know what they’re doing any day.
In fact, if people in Maryland knew which lane they belonged in, I might be able to be on time more often! (Okay, probably not. But it’s possible.)
People in New Jersey may pump their fists, but they DON’T have to pump their own gas.
They’re actually not ALLOWED to. When I started college and met my first New Jersey natives, I found it hilarious that they didn’t know how to pump their own gas.
But once I’d driven to New Jersey and experienced this myself, I started wondering why the rest of the world isn’t as awesome as New Jersey is. I’m not exactly Miss Feminism; I like it when people open doors for me and are extra nice to me because I’m a girl. So do I want a nice man to pump my gas for me? Why yes, I do indeed. And gas prices are even LOWER in New Jersey. On road trips, I tend to coast into the state on fumes, just to experience the joys of New Jersey gas stations. It’s not that I MIND pumping my own gas. It’s just so much nicer when I don’t have to. A gas jockey at a New Jersey station even killed a spider in my car for me one time. That just doesn’t happen in other states.
So New Jersey, I know everyone makes fun of you, but some of us are just jealous. And the rest of the haters just don’t know what they’re missing.
And to everyone who has been reading this whole post expecting me to talk about how my favorite person in the whole world is a New Jersey native, give me a little credit here.
Dr. House is just the icing on the cake. 😉