Streets of Philadelphia

‘Life in the Big City’


©The Talon News | Nicholas West

Owen Norkett and Jacob Stroupe

Philadelphia, also known as the City of Brotherly Love (as it is derived from its original Greek translation) is often seen as something that is quite the opposite of a loving place. In fact, many from out of town view the city and its people as well as most other cities in the northeast as somewhat hostile and aggressive rather than kind and loving. When visiting the city, members of the Talon interviewed residents and visitors alike to gain their perspective on the city around them so as to either affirm or deny the common conception of many outsiders.

Surprisingly enough, many within the city actually believed the people to be good people and that the reason they may have come off as rude to others was due to their passion for the city and the culture within it. 

“Our sports teams are definitely passionate,” resident Riley said. “But I don’t think that speaks for the whole city. So, I can see how that could be viewed, but I don’t really think that’s an accurate viewing.”

Other residents believe that the attitude of the city is not a matter of rudeness but that it is rather a sort of form of etiquette. People and residents of the city are busy in the big city and do not really like to be disturbed, so most passersby tend to respect that.

“I wouldn’t really say it’s about being rude, it’s kind of minding your business,” college graduate and resident Jillian said. “It’s almost like a safety thing too because you never know who’s gonna come up to you in Philly. You [southerners] are so much nicer and strike up conversations, but I think it’s more of a ‘minding your business’ type of thing.”

(©The Talon News | Alina Garcia)

On top of all of that, it appears as if many outsiders and visitors of the city also tend to agree with this sentiment of the residents.

“I feel like being here almost every day you definitely get an interesting mix of people and personalities,” cross-state New Jersey worker Juvia said. “People here are very nice and I feel like in any city you’re going to have your mix of people, but it is what it is.”

At the end of the day, the most common consensus overall is that the attitude of Philadelphia is not really either positive or negative. Everyone within the city seems to view the behavior as just people being people who are going about their daily lives with nothing more or less to it. Nobody views it as abnormal or particular to Philadelphia, simply because everyone in the area acts the same way.

“New York, New Jersey, and Philly all just have the same attitude,” Starbucks employee Kirah said. “We’re not friendly, but I wouldn’t say we’re not nice. I think that it’s not really bad or good but it’s just how they are.”