It has been brought to my attention that Nashville is ranked number 5 on the Angriest City in America list. What an achievement! Nashville usually makes those lists that talk about poor student scores and teen pregnancy. We may be moving up by being on the Angriest City List.
I attribute this success for a few different reasons, and in no real order:
1. Country Music. Considerably some of the most depressing lyrics penned in a single musical genre. Some chick wants Earl to die. Some other guy wants his sweater back, but you get to keep the cat you’ll have to clean up after for the rest of its life. A man’s dog, truck and wife have left him wallowing in his beer at a local bar with a Waffle House waitress named Sue, who is only attractive in the beer-induced fog of a smoky bar and becomes considerably less attractive in the light of day the next morning as she is coughing up a lung from her five-pack-a-day habit and is asking for a ride back to the bar to pick up her truck, which consequently, needs an oil change, and shouldn’t the man do that for her, considering what she did to him the night before? Plenty of reason for anger here.
2. Interstate traffic and/or construction. For about the last fifteen years we have been constructing our interstate system here in middle Tennessee. We’ll do a section on one side of town and stop midway through because the really important people on the Hill forgot to budget the right amount of money to hire those laborers we see taking a break on the side of the road. So, it will be back to the drawing board and we’ll wait around for another year where we’ll gladly elect the same people for the same positions that do the same things… and our interstates will still be under construction. What is that definition of insanity again? OR, perhaps it will be decided that we should work construction on ALL the major roadways AT THE SAME TIME… and we should always begin during rush hour, so as to thoroughly irritate those people whose taxes are funding the construction process anyway. Hmm… nothing to make people angry here.
3. The Tennessee Titans. I won’t stop and brag too much about the fact that I hate this football team and the fact that after their first couple of seasons here, it appears that they have tanked. I won’t mention the horrendous traffic tie-ups on game days. But, that losing streak has got to put a damper on all those tailgating fiends who get halfway through Amazing Grace before they sneak out of the back of church to dash off to the stadium and pull out their buffalo wings, their beer kegs and their binoculars to stare and lust after the cheerleaders doing their high kicks on the sidelines. They’ll skip out of church early so as not to miss the kickoff… but it is doubtful they’ll leave the game early to pass the collection plate or the communion tray for an evening worship service. Yeah, I’ll just let this one go.
4. Fan Fair. Is there anything more enjoyable than pouring tens of thousands of country music fans into a small auditorium with their favorite country music artist? Well… maybe a root canal. Or natural birth. Or a tent peg through the eye. Or being tied to a scud missile and fired into Iraq. Or climbing Mt. Everest without the benefit of an oxygen tank. Or having to endure your period without chocolate. (I think you get the picture). These enthusiasts travel from all over the world to gather in our quaint city for one week out of the year. One. Horrible. Hot. Sticky. Week. More people wear polyester and rhinestones during this June week than at any other time in history. For those of us who are jaded by this occurrence, we tend to pop some popcorn and head over to the Opryland Hotel to play “fashion police” for the people parading by. Note to self: never determine that a sequined leopard print tube top and hip-hugging daisy dukes are a good idea on a size 22 woman. OR a size 46 man.
5. The lottery. You’d think we wouldn’t have a problem funding our school systems now that Tennessee has its very own state lottery. Hundreds of thousands of people cash in their welfare check to stand in line a few hours at a time to purchase a piece of paper that has a one in about a gazillion chances of earning them $5 in return. I can say that anger would erupt for those of us who’d really just want to purchase overpriced gas for our cars, but who have to wait in that same line to pay for the gas. It is no wonder so many people drive away from the pumps without paying. Thank goodness for the pumps with the payment options that keep you from having to enter the store. It may be less social, but it is infinitely more peaceful.
6. Al Gore, Jr. Enough said.