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Thread: Observations on cultures and orderliness

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    Cyburbian dvdneal's avatar
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    Observations on cultures and orderliness

    I have some guy pointing out every pile of junk in my rural county. I think he wants me to do something about it, but all he does is file a records request for the use permit for a junkyard on the property. I now also think I live in a county of hoarders. They're not junkyards, just people who collect crap and figure since they're in AG zoning the rules don't apply to them. They should at least follow common decency for their neighbors.

    I know, it's all part of the rural character, but I noticed in my drive through rural Iowa that the farms are in much better shape than here.

    Moderator note:
    Maister: split from RTDNTOTO8
    Last edited by Maister; 12 Jul 2013 at 10:53 AM.
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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dvdneal View post
    I have some guy pointing out every pile of junk in my rural county. I think he wants me to do something about it, but all he does is file a records request for the use permit for a junkyard on the property. I now also think I live in a county of hoarders. They're not junkyards, just people who collect crap and figure since they're in AG zoning the rules don't apply to them. They should at least follow common decency for their neighbors.

    I know, it's all part of the rural character, but I noticed in my drive through rural Iowa that the farms are in much better shape than here.
    what constitutes 'rural character' has long been discussed on Cyburbia but I think you're onto something with the differences in rural character one finds in different areas/regions. A random 'rural' property in West Virginia is more likely to house a junkyard than one, say, in Iowa (not that Iowa doesn't have junky properties - they do - just speaking in terms of statistical comparasin)

    I noticed the farms around Frankenmuth (and all the old German ancestry) tend to be much more orderly than a typical farm from around, say, Lansing. Same thing with Amish farms. One would be hard pressed to find a trashy Amish property (I can't think of one).
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian Planit's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dvdneal View post
    I have some guy pointing out every pile of junk in my rural county. I think he wants me to do something about it, but all he does is file a records request for the use permit for a junkyard on the property. I now also think I live in a county of hoarders. They're not junkyards, just people who collect crap and figure since they're in AG zoning the rules don't apply to them. They should at least follow common decency for their neighbors.

    I know, it's all part of the rural character, but I noticed in my drive through rural Iowa that the farms are in much better shape than here.
    Call Frank & Mike from American Pickers to come by (buy)
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    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    The hippie/crunchy/organic/artisanal farms around here tend to be quite messy, compared to more conventional farms.

    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    I noticed the farms around Frankenmuth (and all the old German ancestry) tend to be much more orderly than a typical farm from around, say, Lansing. Same thing with Amish farms. One would be hard pressed to find a trashy Amish property (I can't think of one).
    There's a similar phenomenon in my hometown, in a way. Poles tend to have immaculate grounds. Their yards may be cluttered with lawn ornaments, but the grass will be healthy, mowed and edged, and there won't be weeds poking out from any curb or cracks. A odd thing: large trees and tree canopies aren't nearly as common in Polish neighborhoods as elsewhere.
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

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    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    what constitutes 'rural character' has long been discussed on Cyburbia but I think you're onto something with the differences in rural character one finds in different areas/regions. A random 'rural' property in West Virginia is more likely to house a junkyard than one, say, in Iowa (not that Iowa doesn't have junky properties - they do - just speaking in terms of statistical comparasin)

    I noticed the farms around Frankenmuth (and all the old German ancestry) tend to be much more orderly than a typical farm from around, say, Lansing. Same thing with Amish farms. One would be hard pressed to find a trashy Amish property (I can't think of one).
    There is a huge difference between even northern Iowa and southern Iowa. It's partly due to terrain, as the north is flat with very few hiding places for junk and the south has more ravines and trees. The difference goes beyond that though. Having grown up in northern Iowa, I notice more peer pressure to keep things orderly than in southern Iowa. Down here in the south, there is a "live and let live" attitude that prevents the self policing that occurs elsewhere.
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    Funny you should mention the Polish. Both sides of my family come from Grand Rapids and I noticed this very thing at a relatively young age (back in the mid 1970's) in certain west side neighborhoods that still had concentrations of Polish. You could pick out the Polish neighborhoods by the prevalence of bathtub Marys and immaculate lawns (that and the popularity of "Polish patios" in garages). Those neighborhoods are pretty much gone now in GR.

    Now I have the urge to google drive Hamtramck....
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Funny you should mention the Polish. Both sides of my family come from Grand Rapids and I noticed this very thing at a relatively young age (back in the mid 1970's) in certain west side neighborhoods that still had concentrations of Polish. You could pick out the Polish neighborhoods by the prevalence of bathtub Marys and immaculate lawns (that and the popularity of "Polish patios" in garages). Those neighborhoods are pretty much gone now in GR.

    Now I have the urge to google drive Hamtramck....
    Hamtramck? Not so Polish anymore.


    In the 2000 census, major ancestry groups reported by Hamtramck residents were as follows:

    Polish 22.9%
    Black or African American 15.1%
    Yugoslav 10.5%
    Arab (Excluding Iraqi and Lebanese) 8.2%
    Asian Indian 5.4%
    Ukrainian 3.2%
    German 2.9%
    Albanian 2.8%
    Bangladeshi 2.7%
    Irish 2.2%
    Italian 1.8%
    Russia 1.4%
    American 1.1%
    French (excluding the Basques) 0.8%
    Lebanese 0.7%
    Scottish 0.7%
    Mexican 0.6%
    Pakistani 0.6%
    Macedonian 0.5%
    Iraqi 0.5%

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamtramck,_Michigan
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    Cyburbian Rygor's avatar
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    I noticed a similar phenomenon in my travel expoilts in central Texas this past weekend. There was abundance of junky yards and properties in the area I was staying in but then I took a trip down to the town of Fredericksburg which has a very German influence (originally settled by Germans and the boyhood home of Admiral Nimitz, Fleet Admiral of the Pacific fleet in WW2). The farm and houses in Fredericksburg were noticeably cleaner and well kept. Dare I say immaculate, even. Same with the other smaller Texas German settlements in the area.
    "When life gives you lemons, just say 'No thanks'." - Henry Rollins

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    Cyburbian dvdneal's avatar
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    I always love when my pointless rants have a thread split worthy point - even if it's not pole worthy.

    Quote Originally posted by Planit View post
    Call Frank & Mike from American Pickers to come by (buy)
    I just want to post of list for every crack addict so they can steal the junk and sell it to the recycling centers. My problem gets solved, the power company doesn't get as much theft as the addicts are stealing someone elses "valuables", and the junkies get their fix. It's a big win.

    Quote Originally posted by giff57 View post
    There is a huge difference between even northern Iowa and southern Iowa. It's partly due to terrain, as the north is flat with very few hiding places for junk and the south has more ravines and trees. The difference goes beyond that though. Having grown up in northern Iowa, I notice more peer pressure to keep things orderly than in southern Iowa. Down here in the south, there is a "live and let live" attitude that prevents the self policing that occurs elsewhere.
    I think that peer pressure is part of it. There seems to be very little peer pressure in Kansas except in some towns. Rural areas seem to be more of a leave me alone prop-tee rights kind of place.

    Quote Originally posted by Rygor View post
    I noticed a similar phenomenon in my travel expoilts in central Texas this past weekend. There was abundance of junky yards and properties in the area I was staying in but then I took a trip down to the town of Fredericksburg which has a very German influence (originally settled by Germans and the boyhood home of Admiral Nimitz, Fleet Admiral of the Pacific fleet in WW2). The farm and houses in Fredericksburg were noticeably cleaner and well kept. Dare I say immaculate, even. Same with the other smaller Texas German settlements in the area.
    I think there might be something to cultural backgrounds as well, but my county might be an exception. I talked to me public works guy who grew up in Kansas and tells me that the nearby counties were all settled by Germans just like ours, but for some reason the pride in ownership didn't take hold in our county like the others.

    Everyone has their junk property and I'm okay with the people that just shove some crap behind a barn or mostly out of sight, but I seem to have a bunch or hoarders. They pile up railroad ties, metal, cars, anything, but they have a use for it or plan on doing something with it. I have one guy who I swear has an agricultural museum on his property that he plans to sell for parts or something. My coworker said it comes from growing up in a depression mentality that nothing goes to waste. Maybe that value sticks longer here in the dust bowl area than other places.
    I don't pretend to understand Brannigan's Law. I merely enforce it.

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