CODE OF THE CITY

You may have read about the "Code of The West" which is available from the Larimer County website (hint--it isn't easy to find). That code describes the realities of life in the rural west for city slickers who expect to have paved roads and electricity 24 hours a day. But, just as there are rules to live by in the country, there are also the rules of the city....

1. Thou shalt not know thy neighbor in a city. Neighbors are supposed to be strangers. They might be devil worshippers or even worse, Republicans.

2. Everyone in a city is out to kill you. Whether you are out walking your dog, jogging through the park, or standing in line at the liquor store, someone within a few feet of you is carrying a gun and might kill you. Act accordingly.

3. Guns are evil. All those strangers around you are carrying guns. You don't have one because you are afraid to use a gun. But those other scum are carrying heat. Therefore all guns in a city must be banned, especially the ones owned by those strangers. Rifles are ok, because they are owned by strangers who live in the country far away from you.

4. All vehicles on city streets are your enemies. That car that just cut in front of you, that cab, that smelly smoky bus--all obstructing your quick progress. They must be destroyed.

5. Everyone in a city is after your money and will cheat you and maybe kill you to get it. Don't dress rich. All the criminal looking people must be rounded up and jailed.

6. The noise level in a city is so high, one must always shout to be heard.

7. City government doesn't work. It is controlled by strangers and criminals. Expect nothing from city government expect taxes and excuses.

8. There are millions of kids with spray cans in cities defacing everything in sight and this cannot be stopped. They are making the property you paid for with your taxes ugly.

9. The city is the cultural center of the universe. But you never go to plays or concerts because they are too expensive.

10.The number of derelicts on city streets is constantly increasing. Soon the city will be almost totally filled with bums, except for you and the people you know.

11. City streets will always be under construction, and some projects will not be completed during your lifetime. You will never be able to go from point A to point B without a problem. But the potholes on your street are historic sites and cannot be touched.

12. Cab drivers will never be from a country you have ever heard of. None of them will speak English very well. But all of them will be able to overcharge.

13. As soon as it starts to rain people will be selling cheap umbrellas on street corners. Where the umbrellas and the rain come from is a mystery, but they are obviously linked.

14. Snowfall in excess of two inches will paralyze most cities. Be prepared to live a whole day or two without a newspaper.

15. Unless someone important lives in your neighborhood, your garbage will only be picked up occasionally. Get used to the smell of rotting trash.

16. Utility services are exceedingly expensive. Get used to that, as well, or take your pick which you can live without--water, electricity, heat or cable.

17. While there are numerous medical facilities in a city, they are always seriously overcrowded and you will have to wait for hours to be seen by anyone except a receptionist demanding the number of your insurance policy, which is highly stressful. This is why lifespans are shorter in cities than in the country where there are no medical facilities.

18. When you are a victim of a crime, you can expect the police to show up eventually.

19. The nearest public school is not where your child will be allowed to attend school due to racial discrimination in the 19th century.

20. All people who work in government offices are deaf and blind. You can stand in front of their desks or windows for hours and not be noticed.

Copyright 1998 by Hugh Holub
Back to the Bandersnatch