Ok, there’s the darkness and the rain and the traffic and the political gridlock. But, really, Seattle is one of the most miserable cities in the country? That’s the finding of the new “Misery Index” published by Dow Jones, a consumer index which tracks unemployment rates, gas prices and the change in home values. Seattle, unfortunately, ranks as the third most miserable city.
You’d think a city which has spawned so much wealth through companies such as aQuantive, Microsoft, Amazon.com and others couldn’t be this miserable. But money doesn’t always buy happiness. And the Emerald City has taken some body blows in recent years, namely in the drop in housing prices.
Interestingly, Cleveland and Detroit — perhaps two of the most ridiculed cities in America — aren’t that miserable. They are actually at the bottom of the misery index (would that mean the top of the happiness scale?) Boston, meanwhile, is the least miserable city.
I am from the rust belt myself, and spent a lot of time in Cleveland. I made a choice to leave the industrial midwest more than 15 years ago in part because it lacked opportunity for a young guy in his early twenties.
I am not ready to go back, nor am I ready to move to Portland. (It ranked as the second most miserable city, just behind Phoenix).