Friday, June 15, 2012

The Manliest Cities

I was watching "Fox & Friends" (on the Fox News Channel) for the first time in ages this morning.  If I ever do watch a morning show, it's not "Today" or "Good Morning America"; it's this show.

Today, the 80's rock band Def Leppard was putting on a concert right outside the studio, and Steve, Gretchen, and Brian (love those guys!) were talking about how the lead singer lives in Ireland but still watches "Fox & Friends" every morning.  You never know where you're going to find Conservative-minded folks.  I would not have guessed that they could be found amongst the long-haired, aging rockers of Def Leppard.

I'm really glad I tuned in today, because I learned much more than the viewing habits of Def Leppard's lead singer.  I was totally amused to see this breaking news story: [drum roll]...Oklahoma City has been named the nation's "Manliest City" for 2012, according to the 4th annual study conducted by Mars Chocolate.  Like me, you probably didn't know that each year, the New Jersey-based chocolate company ranks 50 major U.S. cities on a manliness scale and publishes the results.  Had this been going on when my five sons were growing up, this story would have been of great interest to the inhabitants of my testosterone-filled household.

This year, Oklahoma City was ranked #1, and San Diego was ranked #50, close on the heels of #49 San Francisco.  (Sorry, California.)  Memphis and Nashville were #'s 3 and 4 respectively; that doesn't surprise me, as those cities bring to mind pickup truck-drivin', cowboy hat-wearin', country music-lovin' manly men (not to pigeonhole the type of male who lives in either of those Southern cities).  Miami finished a dismal #36 out of 50.  How emasculating for Miami, which before today I always thought of as a hotbed of uber-macho types.  To quote an on-line article I read, "The Heat are already one game behind the Thunder in the NBA Finals, and now this humiliating blow."  Yes, humiliating indeed.

How does Mars come up with this list, you ask?  There are many criteria upon which the cities are graded.  The manliest cities have the largest number of "manly" establishments, such as steak houses and home improvement stores, as well as the most monster truck rallies and professional sports teams; they also have the smallest number of "girly" establishments like nail salons, fancy shopping boutiques, and sushi restaurants.  (If you're a guy and you love sushi, you're probably asking yourself, "Hey, what's wrong with that?")

If you live in a major U.S. city and you're curious to know where your burg ranks on the manliness scale (or if it even made it into the top 50), you can go to and check out the list.

It's too bad that Mars doesn't rank the small towns and cities in America, because I'm pretty sure ours would have been right up there at the top of the manliness list in 2003.  If you don't believe me, check out this picture of my sons from the summer of that year.
My manly men.
Red Sox t-shirts, muscles, and a monster truck (okay, a monster van).  It doesn't get much manlier than that.


  1. I love this picture! And I am so happy to get back to my daily routine.... a little late maybe..... but ready your blog is one of my favorite things to do!!

  2. oops... I meant reading not ready!!

  3. They can take the brawns, we have the brains. Did you know that Charlottesville is considered the smartest city in the US?! And that little old Burlington/ Plattsburgh is number 18! Pretty good in my opinion!

    Our family may not live in the “manliest” places, but we contribute to making the smartest cities in the USA! (And really, who wants to live in a place without a touch of femininity!)

    Here is the news story: