When're you're done reading this, go back to reading about the great state of New Hampshire!
Recently, I had the opportunity to visit Vermont and New Hampshire. My trips again reminded me of the incredible differences between two states many assume are similar.
On paper, according to the census, they appear to be a match: Vermont has half a million people, making it 49th of 50 states in population. The median age for residents is 33. It is 98 percent while and has a 5 percent unemployment rate.
New Hampshire has about a million residents. That places it 40th in rank. It, too, is 98 percent white and also has an unemplyment rate lingering around 5 percent.
This proves beyond doubt that statistics are stupid. As a matter of fact, two states could no be more different.
Vermont is a beautiful place, a postcard. New Hampshire looks like Arkansas with snow.
Vermont was home to Abe Lincoln's son and the von Trapp family. New Hampshire gave us the lunatic publisher Loeb, the theif Sherman Adams, athe perposterous Sununu and a member of the Manson gang.
Vermont passed a Clean Air act before the environment became trendy. New Hampshire wrote a constitutional amendment raising the IQ of its citizens by 50 points so they could communicate with their house pets.
Vermont has several nifty towns like Brattleboro and Montpelier. New Hamshire's largest city - Manchester - has a main street that concludes in a dead end.
First thing you see when cross into Vermont is spectactular foliage and sprawling valleys that recede into picturesque, rolling hills. First thing you see in New Hampshire is a toll booth where the attendent is stumped making change for a $5 bill, followe d by a state liquor store.
They speak English in Vermont. They speak a contorted form of gibberish in New Hampshire, saying things like "Geez-o crow, look 'hup the street, the soldiers are marching down."
Vermont has a lots of extremely attractive women. In New Hampshire, the best looking femals are those who trim their mustaches.
Vermont is a mecca for tourists. New Hampshire attracts illiterate ice-fishermen and motorcycle gangs.
Vermont has two capable United States senators. New Hampshire has Judd Gregg, a complete dope who won the 1993 Anthony Perkins "Psycho" look-alike contest and took great pride in the fact he tried to take a dying woman's money after shw put a down payment on his property and then tried to get it back after she contracted cancer. When Gregg announced for the Senate, they coined the phrase, "The sap is running."
On Saturday evenings in Vermont, residents go out to eat or stay home to listen to that boring screwball on National Public Radio. Saturday nights in New Hampshire there is a debate over whether to bathe for the week ahead.
Vermont has a lot of people who moved from Massachussetts and New York to escape the rat race. New Hampshire has thousands who moved in out of pure selfishness, to avoid taxes or doing anything that might help a neighbor.
In Vermont, if you get sick the take you to a hosptial. In New Hampshire, if you become ill, old or infirm they use you for fertilizer or target practice.
In Vermont, people sometimes complain about the cold of winter or the mud in the spring. In New Hampshire, the most common complaint is the sheep either hav a headache or they lie.
To be fair, New Hampshire does have some good points. Areas like Portsmouth, Keene and Peterborough and places like Dartmouth and Durham get a special exemption beacuse they don't fit in with the rest of the state. In addition, New Hampshire has a lot of funerals.
Vermont is called the "Green Mountain State." New Hampshire has "Live Free or Die" on its license plates and the Legislature would actually prefer three of the words tbe removed so the slogan would simply read, "Die."
Vermonters are urbane and fashionable in a rural-chic way. Granite State natives are a mentally-challenged lot of easily confused white people who think buildings with elevators qualify as tourist attractions and spend enormous amounts of money in tattoo parlors or gun stores.
When people from Vermont take a vacation, they travel to spots like Yellowstone Park or Sanibel Island. In New Hampshire, they get in their snowmobiles or speed boats and go to motels to take pictures of indoor plumbing.
Vermont is comfortable and progressive. New Hampshire is home to oddballs in Day-Glo hast, with a deer tossed on top of their truck who pride themselves in being sour, stingy sociopaths who revel in the economic misery of others.
Vermont is New England. In New Hampshire, even in the Old Man of the Mountains wants out.