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Townie’s Lament

Irena Zajickova | Friday, January 16, 2009

I spent most of my life in South Bend hating it.

I was born in Prague, and I’ve lived in two other states besides Indiana. Every time we moved, it seemed like a huge downgrade over the place we lived in before. South Bend, however, was the absolute worst.

We moved here in March, which falls under the huge part of the calendar that is considered South Bend’s “cold season.”

Also, we were supposed to move to Galveston, Texas, instead. After actually arriving in South Bend and experiencing the cold, I must have thought my parents were the dumbest people alive, even at the tender age of six.

No matter how good of a job Notre Dame was giving my dad, how could they possibly have picked this place over Texas? Texas was warm.

As I grew older, my complaints about the city multiplied. There was nothing to do, the mall in Chicago was better, the people weren’t as nice as the people in other places, and so on.

I developed an immediate dislike of anything that had to do with Indiana – sports teams, cities we traveled to -basically, nothing in the state was safe from my scorn.

I didn’t want to go to college here, either. I had many other places in mind, but my parents finally laid down the law (“You’re going here. It’s free.”). And to be honest, by the time senior year rolled around, I had pretty much made my peace with South Bend.

I had liked Notre Dame football for a while (it’s pretty hard to live in South Bend and not get caught up in all of it), and the campus was pretty nice too.

The city itself wasn’t bad either. I decided that even though South Bend wasn’t the most action-packed place, it could always have been worse.

However, this isn’t an admission that South Bend is a remotely exciting place to live. If I had to compile a list of potential places to move to when (if) I graduate and get a job, South Bend wouldn’t even crack the top 10.

But it has grown on me enough that I get somewhat offended when my college friends make fun of it.

An anonymous Notre Dame athlete once told me, “Any bowl game we go to would be better than the South Bend bowl.”

People complain about the weather, the lack of things to do (although I hear Fever is pretty fun), the residents, and pretty much every other aspect of life here.

Just like I did when I was younger. I usually just roll my eyes and laugh it off, but I have to admit that I kind of get annoyed.

I mean, no one forced them to come here.

So the next time you want to complain about whatever in South Bend is annoying you today, think about this: at least you get to leave during breaks.