In a State of Boredom

STATEWith all the excitin’ headliners these days, you may have missed some big news about the Beehive State. We recently ranked as the second most boring state in the union.

Zzzzzzz…

Oh, sorry I dozed off because I got bored looking out my window at the majestic mountain range I frequently hike and ski, and the open roads I bike, and the rivers I paddle, and canyons leading to lakes, and highways taking me to the big city, national parks, and professional sporting, cultural and entertainment events!

How can the state named after nature’s most busy buzzin’ ecosystem be considered boring? And how can you trust a ranking system that didn’t even place Wyoming in the top ten? (Though Idaho did rank first, which makes sense.)

I happened to hear about this sorry status inflicted on our state on a local radio talk show the other day while flipping through the channels trying to find one that wasn’t playing a Taylor Swift song. The topic piqued my interest so I tuned in to find out what measuring stick was used to calculate state boringness.

The evaluation came from a popular website AreaVibes.com which provides detailed statistics, information and rankings about communities around the country as a resource for people who are relocating, shopping real estate investments, or just curious to know if they live in one of the “Top 10 Snobbiest Small Towns in America.”

After clicking around the site a bit, I will concede its resources would be quite helpful if I ever lose my head and decide to leave my little piece of paradise to face the cruel outside world. I typed in my zip code to find out my community’s “Livability Score” which is factored by employment, housing, education, weather, amenities, cost of living and crime rates. The score of 71/100 for my quaint hamlet seemed quite stingy.

Okay, so I have to drive twelve minutes to get a Coke, but how can you put a score on watching my neighbors and sweethearts of 50+ years Dick and Flora stroll hand-in-hand up my road every day? Or hearing sandhill cranes calling in the nearby field, which also contains a hobby herd of exotic lamas? Or watch all the little girls of the community dance around Maypoles in matching dresses every spring at our annual May Day celebration? Apparently none of that counts.

So what does count?

Well, for calculating how boring a U.S. state is they used the following criteria:
Percent of married households (higher being boring).
Percent of households with kids (higher being boring).
Percent of population over 65 (higher being boring).
Population density (lower being boring).

Apparently we’re too married with too many kids and dividing our subdivisions too generously to be interesting. The only thing that spared us from beating out the Spud State for the #1 spot was our high youthful population average and low geezer ratio, which is only 10% (probably with bonus points for containing them mostly in St. George).

I guess we’ve just got to stop being such a committed, selfless and responsible people. If only they would have included “percentage of people with driving etiquette” in the criteria (higher being boring).

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