you know you live in baltimore when…

inspired by an upcoming 48 hours away from “the greatest city in america,” i wrote this list on the stankass megabus to philly last week while listening to yes, “welcome to the jungle.” which makes me wonder: was axl rose in los angeles when he wrote that song? or was he really in…southeast baltimore??

you know you live in baltimore…

when your alley looks like a thrift shop
when you think you saw a squirrel in your yard, but it actually turned out to be a really big rat
when your “yard” is actually a cracked concrete pad
when you find chicken bones in your yard and you haven’t eaten chicken lately
when you discover the “trees” in your yard–and the trees in all of your neighbors’ yards–are just really big weeds
when you get a cat just to catch mice
when every dog you pass on the street is a “pit mix”
when you can’t figure out if the methhead across the street is 30 or 90
when your neighborhood crime listings read like the funnies
when the whapwhapwhap of helicopters lull you to sleep at night
when half your block smells like mothballs & old church basement during open-window season
when scary-ass ice cream trucks circle your neighborhood til midnight–and you’re not sure if they’re really selling ice cream
when there’s an earthquake in the middle of the day in the middle of the week and everyone’s home
when a construction dumpster is a community event
when half the basements on your block flood because someone stole all the copper piping out of rehab
when you roll over at least three plastic mini liquor bottles every time you park your car
when people save parking spots with orange cones in one inch of snow
when someone gets stabbed over a coned-off parking spot in one inch of snow

live in baltimore? recently escape? add yours below…


17 responses to “you know you live in baltimore when…

  1. I haven’t been to baltimore since I was 17, but I just recently started watching the Wire on DVD. It’s interesting to know that the show is a lot like the actual place. What did you think of Philly while you were there? I lived there for a bit.

  2. Man! And I thought my daily game of ‘guess the species of that feces’ was bad.

  3. love philly! can you believe i’ve never watched the wire?!!

  4. Your front steps = people watching lawn chairs… even if you don’t live there.
    no need to learn how to parallel park, hazard lights apparently mean the same thing. And it’s even more awesome when 4 cars are doing it at the same time in one block

  5. hah! yes the hazard lights!! and yeah, dontcha just love when random strangers sit on your stoop??

  6. …when your neighbors treat the “dumps into the Chesapeake Bay” curb warning as an invitation to empty the trash.

  7. In South Boston, instead of cones they save their parking spots with garbage cans and lawn chairs. And people totally get shot over shit like that. Ah, city living. So quaint.

  8. Ha! You always make me laugh … then cry for you … but mostly laugh 🙂 (“pit mix”!!!)

  9. the ‘pit mix’ may be a common denominator… i live in a midwestern suburb, adjacent to some moderate sized cities. when i take my goober-labrador mix to the bark park? there will be AT LEAST three pit bulls / pit mixes frolicing amidst the retrievers and rotweilers. they’ve never caused trouble when i’ve been there… it was the great dane that locked the love radar on my doggie’s sexy arse.

  10. the most awesomest thing I saw while in Baltimore was a ginormous lady in a rowhouse in South Fed Hill getting Chinese takeout through her front window (because she was too tired or lazy I guess, to go to the front door)! And of course the delivery guy had the hazards on on a tiny one way street jammed with traffic & parked cars.

  11. a ginormous lady that accepted chinese takeout thru her rowhome window?!!! and here i thought i saw everything this city had to offer! totally jealous! (daisyfae! a great dane lovin’ on your goober-lab-mix? that sounds like…your dog needs mace 😉 )

  12. I used to work in Baltimore. A few years back my friend who lives in Baltimore was watching the news, and a story about a murder came on. He said, “Hey, that’s my house on the left.” Awesome.

  13. …when people steal the trash can from your curb and the flowers out of your flowerbox.

  14. except baltimore dosn’t have methheads. we have real drugs.

  15. When the girl at McDonald’s curses you out because she gave you the wrong order.

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