So asks Paul Simon on his 2006 album, Surprise. Not one of Simon’s classic songs, but the title inevitably pops in my head 1,000 or so times during winters like these.
This is a tough question to answer when you’re shoveling out your car for the third time in a week and there’s nowhere left to toss the snow. People in warmer climes must look at the photos of Northeasterners surrounded by 10-foot mounds of snow and think we’re insane. And if I were in their shoes, I’d suspect the same thing.
How can I live in the Northeast? Honestly, I’m kind of stuck here. Most of my family resides in Greater Boston, and the same goes for my wife. You’d be a fool to turn down all those free dinners and babysitting sessions.
On a professional level, there’s an equally strong pull to be right where we are. You can’t run a copywriting firm just anywhere. Sure, we get some business from random states throughout the U.S. But you can’t beat being in a city with all these colleges and universities, tech companies, world-class hospitals, biotechs, etc.
Where else in the country could we have such a diverse and deep group of potential clients? San Francisco, New York, maybe Chicago. I might be missing a place or two, but you get the idea.
So, as I suffer through one of the most miserable winters of my lifetime, I try not to complain too much. Because living in the Northeast — or Boston, anyway — isn’t so bad, at least if you run a copywriting firm.