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‘Muricans, we know this is a loaded question, one that might incite some anger (deep breaths East Coasters) and hurt some feelings (stop being so sensitive West Coasters), but with about 40% of the population living in counties that directly border shorelines, a lot of people take pride in the debate. Just as we have Biggie versus Tupac and New York versus LA, buckle in as we brave choosing a winner in the East Coast vs West Coast rivalry.
We start things off with maybe the toughest category in the conversation. Los Angeles is Los Angeles, they have cool points, San Francisco could be the most progressive and aesthetically beautiful city in the nation, and Seattle has a bearded, pretentious coffee-sipping charm. However, the draw of New York is too strong. Worldwide travelers and culture seem attracted to NYC on a scale that may only be matched by Paris. Throw in the Latin flair of Miami, Boston’s history, and DC’s citywide museum feel and the East Coast takes this one.
Winner: East Coast
The Great Outdoors
“Summering in the Hamptons” doesn’t quite cut it when compared to the majesty of Yosemite National Park, giant sequoia trees, and a wildness that stretches from the Pacific to the Mississippi. Not to mention, the culture and quality around California beaches will always trump the shores of gator-infested Florida.
Winner: West Coast in a landslide
Orlando isn’t going to ride off into the sunset all by their lonesome. Disney has their gloved mouse paws on both coasts. Universal Studios is duplicated on each. SeaWorld does their orca thing in both places too. San Diego has Legoland, so does Orlando. We’re gonna call this a draw.
Winner: It’s a draw because after all if we are battling the heat, immovable crowds, and crying children at an amusement park during the summer, aren’t we all losers?
California weather is legendary. Sure the entire coast isn’t San Diego and LA but shoot, even the snow is better, it’s fluffy and fun, not wet and icy. Even the Pacific Northwest, which is known for its gloomy weather, embrace the clouds in an endearing “it’s not so bad” kind of way. East Coasters are just mask their misery with extra layers for at least five months every year.
Winner: West Coast
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If we’re talking fine dining or even traditional “American” dishes then the East Coast may take the proverbial cake… but we aren’t talking about that. The U.S is a melting pot of cultures and peoples. Because of the West Coast’s proximity to Central America and quicker flights from Asia, the diversity of foods and quality of things like sushi and burritos is what gives the West Coast the win. East Coasters, show us a more perfect food than a street taco and you’ll get our attention.
Winner: West Coast
There is something to be said about this rivalry — it’s not a complete runaway as you might think. The Lakers are only one championship behind the Celtics, the San Francisco Giants have one of the best, and usually most filled, baseball stadiums in the country, and the 49ers have the Joe Montana and Jerry Rice years to hang their hat on. But with this being said, the East Coast has an unmistakable delusion surrounding sports that cannot be matched by the West. Until you listen to New England fans list the things they are willing to do or sacrifice to make Tom Brady immortal, or you enter into the collective disappointment of New York Knick and Jets fans, you won’t understand.
Winner: East Coast
Jersey had Springsteen. Seattle gave us Hendrix. Rap was started on the East Coast, but arguably perfected in the West. Jazz and Mo-town belong to New Orleans and Detroit in the interior so they can’t be brought into this, and the same with country music. So, where the difference is going to be made is in unique sounds. The beaches of California, starting with The Beach Boys and evolving with bands like Sublime and Red Hot Chili Peppers, has its distinct own flavor. Also, the grunge movement coming out of Seattle was one of the biggest musical shifts seen in the U.S. As for popular, somewhat geographic theme songs, “California Love” is way more of a banger than “Empire State of Mind.”
Winner: West Coast. No official Tupac/Biggie winner will be announced but remember the words of the late modern philosopher Paul Walker “attitude is attitude, whether you’re a West Coast gangster or East Coast gangster…you know?”.
The West Coast has had its moments; culturally with cinematic history, the Wild Wild West, and surely the tech boom will be thrown in there one day. But as far as history goes, what with the whole founding of our country, the East Coast is a big winner. For travelers especially, the constant history on display on the East Coast from Revolutionary and Civil War battle sites, museums, and historic architecture makes the East well worth a visit over the West.
Winner: East Coast
Some of these are going to be tough for East Coasters to swallow. Yes, surfing and yoga is probably a more positive fitness outlet than throwing ‘bows on the subway. Flip-flops really aren’t that bad either. East Coasters, especially the big city folk, go 1,000mph every day, and we salute you for it. However, for long-term sanity, don’t the “chill vibes” (admittedly these go out the window in traffic) of the West seem just a bit more appealing?
Winner: West Coast and things like kombucha we guess.
It’s official. West Coast takes the prize this time. Final Score: 5-3-1 in favor of the West.