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fat-friendly cities and towns?
thirtiesgirl wrote in fatshionista
Hi fats. I come to you with a question. Based on your experiences, what places, cities, towns do you consider fat-friendly?
By "fat-friendly," I mean the town or city has a fat community with some knowledge of and experience with fat acceptance and health at every size; the dating scene is generally good for fats; and there's an overall friendliness and not much negativity towards fats from people of every size, gender and ethnicity. ...Or am I asking for a tall order, here?

I've lived all my life in Southern California, growing up in a touristy beach community, where beach bunny bodies were the norm. I've lived in Los Angeles for the past 12 years, where I moved to ostensibly start a new life that included a romantic partner, good friends, a job I loved and a neighborhood I was fond of. I've managed to find a few of those things in LA, but it's been a real struggle. For the past several years, I've been considering finding a new place to call home. I'm just not sure where that might be, so I'm asking for your knowledge and experiences to help develop my search.

I should mention a few things: I don't do well with cold winter weather when it drops below 40 degrees farenheit (meaning, very little to no snow). If I could handle snow and cold, windy temps, Chicago would be my go-to city. A fat friend of mine from LA moved to Chicago several years ago and couldn't say enough about the cute men who frequently hit on her and the general attitude difference she experienced, in comparison to LA. But sadly, I have circulation issues, so temps below 40 degrees in winter are not good for me.

I'm also not good with extreme heat or humidity; extreme to me meaning any temps over 105 degrees farenheit. I lived for several years in the San Fernando Valley where it can get as hot as 108 degrees in summer, which is a wee bit too hot for me, but just barely manageable. Thank goodness for A/C.

Places I've considered living include Portland, OR; Austin, TX; and Sacramento, CA. Portland is now off the list because it's apparently extremely difficult to find jobs in education there, especially if you're moving from out of state. I work in education, so that's not good for me. Sacramento's still on my list as a potential city for me to check out if I want to stay in California, but I know next to nothing about it. Same with Austin, aside from the great music scene there.

So now that I've given you my list of nearly impossible to meet standards (big surprise), what do you say? What cities and towns do you consider fat-friendly?

Thanks for reading.

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Austin is an amazing city. How can you find bad in a city who's motto is "Keep Austin Weird"? The cost of living is high when compared to the rest of TX but tremendously lower than CA. Austin has pretty great weather and if you're into outdoors they have amazing parks and you're also close to lots of rivers with good floating (if you've never inner tubbed lazily down a river you haven't fully lived). The live music scene is unrivaled. I've found that the general population is very diverse. As with most places in Texas you have to drive cause the mass transit is not very reliable.

I'm planning a relocation to Austin in the next couple years as most of my friends have already migrated there.

I'm a native Houstonian and I've enjoyed living here. Though it gets oppressively hot from June-Sept so that take it off your list.

Austin gets pretty oppressively hot during that time, too. :)

I spend my leisure time during the hotter months in Austin to get away from the heat here.

Austin's lack of rainforestesque humidity makes it feel like heaven.

The humidity is definitely lower here, I'll give you that! The record number of over 100 degree days this year hasn't made me feel like it's any cooler, though.

I experienced Texan tubing this past summer for the first time. I chuckled when I realized that the extra tube was for the cooler.

Yeah, a friend of mine from high school lived in Austin for six years and absolutely loved it. She told me a little about the climate and the driving issues. She said it's a very spread-out city, kind of like LA, and traffic is the norm, so, basically, if I'm hoping to get away from LA traffic, Austin's not the place for that. But otherwise, she said it's a great city.

Having driven in both places, I can tell you that Austin traffic will seem like a piece of cake compared to LA. It's crappy, but not nearly as crappy.

Good to know. I'm actually kind of a driving freak (meaning, I like to drive) so my first few years in LA, I kind of had this "bring it on!" attitude when it came to traffic. Having lived here for 12 years now, I'm absolutely sick of it. It's one of the main reasons I want to get out of here. That and the ridiculous cost of living.

then Chicago has another strike (or two) against it. The cta(public transit) is great if you live in the city, but traffic driving-wise is just as bad as LA.

The cost of living is about the same as LA as well. Sales tax in cook county is 10.25%, food is more expensive, and gas prices are just as high, if not higher at times.

I'm looking at SoCal for the end of this year, to get away from the stupid politics and the crappy weather! (I realize the politics in CA are just as bad.) :)

Yes, and with the economy as it is right now, California is not a great place to live at the moment. California's state economy has not recovered in the least and the job market sucks, at least from what I've heard for those looking for jobs. I work in education and fortunately managed to keep my job last year; I was displaced from the school where I worked, but the school district found me a new and better school. I'm not so sure about my job for the upcoming 2010-2011 school year, though. There will be even more major budget cuts to education (as well as other helping professions), so I may not be able to keep my job. That's part of the reason I'm looking to get out and try someplace new.

That's actually not the city's motto. It's the slogan of the Austin Independent Business Alliance, and was intended to encourage people to support local, non-chain stores.

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