Stories from my 14-month study abroad in Buenos Aires, my 16-month post-college move to Miami, and my get-me-the-hell-out-of-Miami move to Denver

Friday, March 25, 2011

What I Use To Think...

Miami is all about flash, Minneapolis is the complete opposite.

I used to think Lamborghinis and Ferraris were cool cars driven by financially successful individuals. Now, I think they're just an exotic rental from a South Beach dealership being driven by someone wrapped up in a false life of luxury that hasn't come to realize it yet.

I used to think people drove well. Now, I realize that Midwestern drivers possess a level of driving expertise that Miami drivers will never achieve. My hand subconsciously flicks on my blinker when I'm driving. I don't even realize it's on unless I look at the dashboard and see it clicking. I would say about 20% of Miami drivers use their blinker. You'd think the cars here didn't have them.

I used to respect public road construction workers. Now, I've lost all respect for them and their lack of work ethic. It's true that you see it once and a while up north, but usually, road construction is done quickly and efficiently. Road crews only have 5 months (summer) to get the majority of their work done, so they work hard and get results. I swear to you, the road crew working on Biscayne Boulevard's underground pipe installation and blacktopping project does the BARE minimum to get by and not get in trouble with the city. I would estimate that at their current pace, which appears to be roughly 2 feet per day, they'll finish the 15-block project by 2050. Minneapolis crews would have this done by Fall 2011, if not earlier.

Beyond that, I can't tell you how many times I've seen poor work ethic in action. Instead of two guys using two wheelbarrows and two shovels to move a pile of gravel, they choose to have one guy, with one shovel, fill the other guy's wheelbarrow, which he slowly moves to the dumping point. What about the classic three guys watching one guy with a pick-ax. Does it take a brain surgeon to figure out efficient work practices? Why is laziness awarded in our society by never ending public contracts? Financial initiative for rapid completion of public works projects must not exist here. Give this to a private company working on a deadline, and you better believe these guys would get their act in gear or get fired.

I'm sure I'll think of more.

Don't read this like I don't like it down here. There are many positives about Miami. I just needed a little venting time.


Anonymous said...

i think you couldn't have chosen a place more opposite than minneapolis. and you're hitting the nail on the head. from my latin american experience, i feel like people up north are more honest, hard working, and genuine. they aren't flashy, they are confident in what they do and they take pride in something greater. and they aren't loud about it. they do a great job, they are humble, and they aren't trying to scam you at every opportunity. and it's not just b/c i'm a foreigner. people here try to undercut each other on a regular basis.

i read an article about life in miami (maybe you sent it to me?) that said people with strong morals and work ethics often decide to leave.

it's true that you become like the people you surround yourself with. attitudes are contagious. find positive, active, hard working people to spend time with and you will see how quickly you start reaching your own goals too.


Anonymous said...

I hope you haven't abandoned this blog. I'm hoping to continue reading about your ongoing impressions of living in Miami. Have thought a lot about making the move, myself. But, bring from NC, I'm afraid it would be too different for my taste. That's why your perspective is so useful, since you are also from a very different part of the country.