Alex (yakshaver) wrote,
Alex
yakshaver

East is East, and West is West, and the wront one I have chose

I just saw in the Somerville Police LJ "Man stabbed in East Somerville alleyway ... on Broadway near Glen Street" and my immediate thought was East end of Broadway? That's got to be close." So I pulled it up on google maps.

I live, as most of you know, near the west end of Broadway.

I've had this problem since, quite literally, my first hour in Massachusetts, twenty years ago: my mental orientation in the world is deeply rooted in the idea that the ocean is west. That's an instinct that always worked well for me — until I moved to the East coast. I first arrived in Mass on I-84, driving north toward I-90. I'd driven straight through from Ann Arbor, taking I-80 across Pennsylvania to avoid the tolls on the New York Thruway, so I'd already driven something like 750 miles when I crossed out of Connecticut. I saw the signs ahead, and without really parsing them, took the westbound ramp.

To this day, when I'm tired, I'll see an east or west reference, orient myself (or rather, think I've oriented myself) — and draw the 180° wrong conclusion. I guess it's nice to know my mental foibles are reliable. :)
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