The time has finally come to get some siding up on our bathroom/tower extension. Keeping it local is what living in a small town is all about, so we made the 4-block drive to our local lumber yard and found our options for siding that matched our 114-year old clapboard cladding somewhat limited, but satisfactorily within our ways and means.
The fella who helped us wasn't from 'round these parts, as articulated by his dialectally discernible accent, punctuated by his pronunciation of his home state of New "Joisey."
His tale of pomp and circumstances of how he, his son, and old yeller lab made it from the boardwalks of Springsteen, Bon Jovi, and the Sopranos to our little corner of middle Okie heaven involve the 8.3% unemployment rate in his home state (something like 1.6 million jobs lost), and the opportunities for a fresh start, employment in a field of familiarity, and lower living costs.
My entire realm of experience and knowledge of the Garden state comes from listening to Springsteen songs, watching Kevin Smith flickers, and undertaking marathon sessions of Diners, Drive-In's and Dives on the Food Network, yet we communicated on a level unique to immigrants everywhere -- of things missed from back home, and the pluses and minuses of where we are now.
When asked how he's coping with going from New Jersey, which has the highest population density of any state to Oklahoma, which ranks 36th in terms of people per square foot, Joisey Joe commented, "a guy doesn't have to drive very far to be alone with his thoughts out here..."