Ho Hum …. Another Honor for Pittsburgh

If you know anything about Pittsburgh’s recent sports history, you know the one thing fans in this town do not suffer from is arrogance. While we really feel that we have the best football team in the world ( and the Super Bowl bore that out ), any fan will tell you there was more than a bit of doubt late in that game.

I think this lack of confidence comes from way too many defeats in the AFC championship games of the past … and three straight losses in the 90’s by the then-competitive Pirates in the National League Championship series.

However, that fear of failure may only lie with our sports franchises. When it comes to us as residents of this region, we are getting used to compliments. In fact, we’re not getting excited anymore.

The latest laud comes from The Economist, a magazine with a world-wide following which has more to do with political climate and planning trips. It just rated Pittsburgh the 29th best place in the world to live. Here’s where it becomes impressive: we are the top-ranked city in the United States.

Why Pittsburgh? Let’s assemble all the usual suspects: cost of living, hospitals, technology, the arts and quality of life. Pittsburgh seems to have it all … and while our civic leaders are taking pride and sending out press releases celebrating their hand in helping win us this honor, most residents are quietly unmoved by the news.

Pittsburghers, I guess, don’t worry about the world view. The world, for most of us, is where we live. Sometimes that means western Pennsylvania, sometimes that means Allegheny county and sometimes, that just means the boro or township we call home. Maybe its because our attitude about such designations is similar to way we have weathered the ebbs and flows of economic reality the last 20-plus years. We did not see the economic boom so we did not experience the bust. We did not get too high with the highs so we won’t tumble too low with the lows.

SUNNY 001For me, its the realization that I happen to live in a very unique place. Its a region that has ressurected itself from economic death and – like a phoenix rising from the ashes – found new life. Its not to say we don’t have our problems and our challenges, but we seem to have made it over the hump and now we are that example of what is possible in today’s harsh global economy.

I was running the jail trail this morning and looking at this city. It really is wonderful. The view is impressive and there is so much to like about Pittsburgh. Obviously, the people here know that – and demonstrate that with a quiet confidence about winning yet another honor.

Now, if we could only have that confidence for game 7. Watch the game with both eyes open everyone.

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