What’s Arizona like? 7 issues to learn about our beloved state
It doesn’t take lengthy to determine that Arizona is not like wherever else.
And we imply that in a great way.
The Arizona Republic’s opinion writers and editors have brains crammed with random bits of knowledge, after years of dwelling in and masking this high-quality state.
Listed here are just some to ponder in the present day as you make that turkey sandwich and do some Christmas purchasing:
As cities go, Phoenix continues to be a child
The remainder of the nation is fooled by our look.
Google will inform you that Phoenix is the fifth-largest metropolis in america, nevertheless it’s actually the nation’s greatest small city.
Like the remainder of Arizona, Phoenix could look absolutely grown, nevertheless it’s nonetheless a child. Phoenix has simply began shaving. It doesn’t but have its driver’s license. Phoenix hasn’t determined what it needs to be when it grows up.
In caricature phrases, if New York is Mr. Wilson (and it’s), Phoenix is Dennis the Menace.
We’re a part of the final state within the decrease 48 to affix the union.
It’s a transitory place, a state and a metropolis crammed with migrants from different states who deliver with them habits, traditions and loyalties from older, extra well-established communities.
It is usually the sort of place that manufactures homegrown iconoclasts, amongst them nationwide powerhouses as diversified as Barry Goldwater, Cesar Chavez and Sandra Day O’Connor. It additionally welcomes newcomers who rework themselves into Arizona icons, like John McCain.
Over my years in Arizona I’ve heard from pals, kin and colleagues in different states who discover it each obstinate and odd that Arizona doesn’t observe Daylight Saving Time.
I inform them our pioneering, nonconformist state chooses to not spring ahead. Interval.
And once we fall again, which we do typically, it’s to the Center Ages.
— EJ Montini, columnist
Arizona, summed up in 4 phrases
Arizona is dwelling to the jaw-dropping Grand Canyon and the saguaro cactus, the slow-growing plant that solely sprouts arms with age.
That’s the vacationer postcard.
What else is Arizona? A Reddit person just lately requested to explain Arizona to non-Arizonans in 4 phrases.
The solutions are hilarious and sort of true. A couple of examples:
- “Reason behind demise: Dehydration.” Water is already scarce on this Sonoran Desert, after which you will have silly individuals who hike in 100-degree climate with no water or these houseless people who perish within the scorching warmth. Actually unhappy.
- “Cactus, nature, crackheads, Filibertos.” The fast-food joint is in every single place if you wish to give these crunchy 5 rolled Tacos a go. I agree that Filibertos is significantly better than Taco Bell.
- “Dusty scorching dry scorpions.” These creatures aren’t any joke. I swear I’ll transfer out of the state if I ever discover one on my mattress. I acquired stung by one a number of months in the past and ended up getting a truckload of photographs. Scorpions may very well be lethal for folks like me, so take them critically.
- “A man known as Rafi.” By no means thoughts who Rafi is or that digital promoting is king these days. Suffice it to say that Arizona’s roads and freeways are blanketed with billboards. Gotta love them.
Arizona is that and far more. It’s a border state with Mexico, a mixing pot of cultures and traditions but additionally a spot the place folks nonetheless segregate themselves both by selection or for financial causes.
It’s a spot the place folks can survive not talking a phrase of English for years and the place some nonetheless imagine they need to go to Texas to get candy bread.
— Elvia Diaz, editorial web page editor
This was the voice of Phoenix
In case you have been going to decide on the voice synonymous with Phoenix or Arizona, you might need chosen one thing earthy and off the ranch, tobacco-cured with a wisp of mesquite.
We by no means thought to do this in Phoenix, so I’ll thank the Lord in his knowledge for the present of Pat McMahon.
Essentially the most recognizable voice in Phoenix in its youth — the latter half of the twentieth century — was loud and sassy, a horn part unto itself. On the nasal scale, it registered someplace between Ethel Merman and Liberace.
Nevertheless it was signature McMahon. And anybody who grew up in Phoenix knew it immediately because the voice of Gerald — that superb little one character McMahon created as a younger grownup to please youngsters and shock their mother and father.
On the children’ TV present “Wallace and Ladmo,” Gerald was mouthy and conniving, probably the most spankable little rat fink on the planet. And each child in Phoenix beloved him. This was not your typical youngsters’s programming.
Later we’d develop to like the person who had created Gerald on the speculation that Jack the Ripper and Attila the Hun should have as soon as been youngsters, too.
— Phil Boas, columnist
Milk is totally different in Arizona
I’ve discovered that milk has a “terroir,” just like wine. Arizona milk has a definite taste, with a drier end and extra minerality than the sweeter, extra herbaceous milk I grew up on in Indiana.
Why? Effectively, consider that well-known saying: You might be what you eat. The style of Arizona milk, very like the grapes we develop into award-winning wines, is closely influenced by the surroundings during which it’s grown.
You would possibly say our milk helps give Arizona a way of place.
Oh, and one other enjoyable truth about milk? The bulk of what’s produced in Arizona stays in state, so to totally perceive the distinction, it’s important to style it right here.
— Joanna Allhands, digital opinions editor
Do not miss Fall League baseball
Baseball followers in metro Phoenix welcome the autumn ideally with a postseason look, like this 12 months’s miraculous run to the World Sequence.
Even when not, we usher it in with the Arizona Fall League.
Six squads, representing the highest prospects of all 30 Main League Baseball groups, play within the league across the Valley.
The Arizona Diamondbacks assist area the Salt River Rafters, whose stadium is within the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Group exterior Scottsdale.
Not solely will we get to see future Main Leaguers in motion — Ronald Acuña Jr., Aaron Choose, Mookie Betts and a number of others performed within the league — however we get to take action at a discount. Particularly when you think about younger’uns below 12 get in at no cost (with a paying grownup).
Not even Florida, which hosts the opposite half of spring coaching, can lay declare to what Arizona has within the Fall League.
It’s an final deal with for the (actually) truthful climate fan.
— Abe Kwok, deputy opinions editor
The great work that occurs right here
As you collect ‘around the Thanksgiving desk with kin and pals who aren’t from round right here, be ready for The Query:
What’s unsuitable with Arizona?
OK, our politics are wacky. That’s been our means for lo’ the final 40 years. And social media? It’s a mine area.
However right here in the true world inhabited by common people, Arizona has a lot to supply past politics and sunshine.
Sure, we’re in all probability finest recognized today for being the birthplace of Turning Level USA. However do you know that ChildHelp was based by a pair of Arizonans? So was the Make-a-Want Basis.
Sure, Arizona gave the world Kari Lake. However we additionally declare Alice Cooper, who just lately opened his third Stable Rock Teen Heart, giving children a free place to seek out inspiration by means of artwork, music and dance.
Positive, we’re the house of Kyrsten Sinema. However we’re additionally the house of Derek Brown. He’s a fifth-grade trainer at Alhambra Conventional Faculty, the place he and his college students have launched Operation Secret Santa.
They hope to boost $5,000, then hit the streets to provide it to individuals who need assistance.
“The aim is easy. It’s to show the children to understand the artwork of giving and to make a distinction within the lives of others … ,” Brown just lately informed 3TV/CBS5. “We’re going to make as many lives higher this vacation season as we probably can.”
All throughout the state, you can find good folks going out of their strategy to make life just a bit higher for these round them.
What’s unsuitable with Arizona, your loved ones would possibly ask?
Inform them, completely nothing.
— Laurie Roberts, columnist
Why we speak about survival
Phoenix is the one place on the earth I’ve been the place excellent strangers speak to newcomers about survival as quickly as they hit city.
“Drink water,” they are saying.
“Does the AC work in your automobile?” they ask.
“The warmth sneaks up on you, don’t exit if you happen to don’t need to,” they are saying.
They’re proper, in fact.
Newcomers are inclined to underestimate the warmth, particularly the primary time the temperature hits 100 levels, which might occur in April.
“This ain’t so unhealthy,” they’ll say, in all probability sporting pants or lengthy sleeves.
Newcomers quickly be taught that it’s not the primary 100-degree day that causes issues however the tenth, fifteenth or twentieth — in a row.
The sidewalks maintain warmth, turning the town and its suburbs into a large oven, baking from the solar above and the bottom under.
Folks get cranky. Canines want little sneakers to go do their enterprise. And automobile tires explode just like the overinflated balloons they turn into in these situations.
Then folks begin getting airlifted off Camelback Mountain. (My guess is that they’re almost ALL Midwesterners who don’t notice what a foul concept it’s to hike when it’s so scorching that rattlesnakes shed their pores and skin simply to placed on tank tops and quick shorts.)
In 2023, we had about 5 months of 100-degree days, together with a brutal string of 31 days in a row the place the temperature hit 110. The warmth wave got here with deaths and hospitalizations.
And it’s why Phoenix is the one place the place excellent strangers speak to newcomers about survival as quickly as they hit city.
— Greg Moore, columnist
What bits of random knowledge have you ever collected about Arizona? Share your tales at email@example.com.