Friday, September 4, 2009

Forbes Thinks Chicago Sucks

Does this look like a terrible place to you? First, Forbes named Chicago America's third most miserable city. We were deemed even more miserable than Detroit. Do you have any idea how miserable Detroit is??? Today, I find that Chicago has been named -- again by Forbes -- as the number one most stressed city. Number one. We, apparently, are more stressed out as a combined people than even New York where it costs $1 million to live in a 500 square foot apartment, Detroit where the mayor sex-texted his way to jail and Portland where it rains about 300 days a year. You know what? I'm getting a little tired of the bad press.

Has Steve Forbes or any of his ilk ever BEEN to Chicago? Steve doesn't strike me as the sort prone to relax at a Cubs game with a hotdog and big-ass beer so maybe it's just not his kind of town.

Sure, I'm stressed, but that's because my home has sustained its own mini Hurricane Katrina, I'm living with my parents and two toddlers while my husband gets to vacation in our hometown of Chicago at the fat pad of our well-to-do friends and dine out with abandon as if he has a side gig as a food critic for the Chicago Tribune. OF COURSE I'M STRESSED. But as a whole, I don't think Chicago should rank number one on some ridiculous "stressed out" list compiled by misinformed Forbes reporters. What's with Forbes and lists anyway? The Celebrity Power List, Most Powerful Women, Best Places to Raise Children... How about a list of magazines with the most inane lists? That would be a good one.

I, by the way, met Steve Forbes' less important brother whose name currently escapes me but I believe works for the Forbes franchise. Had I known he had such ill will toward Chicago, I would have veered the discussion away from his ego and toward the virtues of our fine city so as to perhaps negate this bias the Forbes folks seem to have toward it.


PS -- Birmingham, Alabama doesn't rank on this stress list. Who could be stressed when you dress your kids in airy poplin one pieces and get to gaze at firemen while your kids gleefully teeter totter?

PSS -- Curious how stressed out Forbes thinks your city is? Click here. New York and LA -- you people are very stressed too. Go take a Xanax or something.


  1. I've spent most of the "summer" cursing Chicago and its infuriating weather, but now I'm outraged. Only WE can talk smack about our fair city. Bastards.

  2. This is just stupid when San Diego is number 16! San Diego is a very delightful place...what's to be stressed out about if you live there!?

  3. Their Methodology is off. Number of sunny days per year? What does sunshine have to do with stress? How about number of days over 100? Number of days you have to lather a toddler in sunscreen? Seriously this alone should make Dallas a lot higher than 36th.

    And where's the traffic stats? Now there's something stressful. I think Forbes made a list out of the 6 stats that they could quickly lay their hands on. Accurate reporting, eh, speed is where its at.

    And I've always had a lovely time visiting Chicago, except for the time my luggage got lost at O'hare coming in on a late night flight for my beloved Aunt Heidi's funeral. (And for that I blame the airlines).

  4. Forbes is full of shit! They say that Seattle only has THREE sunny days all year?! They don't what the hell they are talking about?! And air quality?! It's GREAT in this area! Seattle is #11?! Arrgggg and a half.

    Forbes must just be jealous. Stupid Forbes.

  5. Chicago. Finally number one at something. Most stressed. We'll take it!

  6. Worse than Detroit?!?! That is nonsense! I live ina suburb of Detroit,and I make it a point to not even drive through it let alone visit it. And I know I'll catch shit for that because we are suppose to rally around that decrepit city because there are a FEW improvements?!? Please! And that whole thing with Mayor Kwamee was embarrassing, and I don't even live in the city!! I think Chicago is awesome!! I went there on my first girls' weekend after my daughter turned a year. It's a great city!!

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  8. Well I, unlike others who commented here, used to live in Chicago --and before that New York.
    There are the usual stressors in the city of Chicago itself. It is a clusterf*ck as far as daily commuting, many don't even bother. Chicago has the 2nd or 3rd worse traffic snarls in the country. The L train is available, but its often late these days and most L stations are outside, so you have to wait in sub zero temps in winter.
    There is the big kicker, the weather. It's not so much the cold, but it's grey and dismal most of the year. There are nearly as many overcast/rainy days as the Northwestern US. Check out the stats!
    The summers can be nice but perfect days are few and far between. Many people feel like slaves to their homes in the winter which can last up to 6 months. Some don't think this causes stress. I disagree.
    Chicago is also very pricey compared to a place like Detroit and might have more overall ghetto than Detroit. Sales taxes and other costs of livng are worst in America. But unlike NYC, the wages/salaries in Chicagoland are not high enough to match that cost of living. The crime is not the worst, but Chicago officials have been reported to give incomplete crime records as well. Corruption in Chicago? Noooo. Chicago has its nice areas like most big cities around the globe, but it has all the stress of a big city without the number of big city paychecks of NYC or L.A. The best thing I can say about Chicago is that the food is good. But then again, it was better in New York, and San Fran is better as well. Both more expensive, but also better jobs to be found in better local economies.

  9. Chicago is the fat kid at recess.

  10. Like any city in the country, Chicago has its issues. I live in Denver, and in many ways, it's miserable, too. Dry heat, horrible infrastructure, and more and more crowds. Lists like this make no sense to me, as there are good and bad things about every place on earth. Detroit, for example, is extremely economically depressed, but in recent times, folks have been re-investing (slowly) in that city and there is some new activity happening. I suppose we can hope and pray that our economy continues to grow, and that our cities will experience growth and vibrancy in future times.