by Kevin Allman
When it comes to lists of cities in the U.S., New Orleans has grown accustomed to coming in at either the top (music, food, fun, culture) or the bottom (crime, murder, corruption, ease of pronouncing and/or spelling street names). So I'm not sure if it's good or bad that NOLA is, for once, in the middle of a list -- the list of "America's Manliest Cities," as calculated by some snack food company I've never heard of. Out of the 50 cities surveyed, we came in at a solid #27, right between slightly-more-macho Harrisburg, Penn. and slightly-less-macho Las Vegas. Today's most useless (and entertaining) press release provides the details of this highly scientific survey:
Via the "America's Manliest Cities" study, COMBOS(R) - the hearty, pretzel and cracker snack made with real cheese - examines what makes a city manly and then ranks 50 major metropolitan areas using criteria such as number of professional major league sports teams, popularity of tools and hardware and frequency of monster truck rallies. Cities also lose ranking points for emasculating characteristics like the abundance of home furnishing stores, high minivan sales and subscription rates to beauty magazines.
Dang. One more Ultimate Fighting Championship here and there, one less aromatherapy spa, and we might've bested Grand Rapids, Mich. (#24) or the manly metropolis of Salt Lake City (#16). New Orleans did top the list in one category:
Got chainsaws? What about hammers and power drills? The men of New Orleans do. The "Big Easy" boasts more hardware stores per capita than any other U.S. city.
Yeah, well, hurricanes can do that to ya.