This is a selection from Jennifer Kimes’s great essay, “Community =/= Widget.” If you like this, you’ll like the whole book. You will. Honest and for true.
How people feel about a place runs in cycles. A community’s pride or self-deprecation could be drawn on a chart, I’m sure of it.
Here’s how that cycle goes. First, something changes and everyone feels good. A unique new business opens and the community wraps around it and takes a little piece of it as their own pride. But a month later, when an older business closes, the public begins the old refrain:
“Someone needs to do Something about this town…”
That continues for a while, until the next big event where thousands gather and the moms and kids chat endlessly about how fun it was to be downtown. Pride is temporarily restored.