Austin: A Geographic Example of Dunning-Kruger
I have lived in this dump for nearly three years and I am counting down the days until I leave. I moved to this dump in the fall of 2017 to attend UT, which is admittedly an excellent institution. It's a world-class university about which I cannot say enough good things. That said, UT is a rose surrounded by a manure field.
This dump is overcrowded to the point of absurdity. Apparently no civil engineer was consulted when "leaders" decided to grow the city at all costs and not consider infrastructure whatsoever. Forget being a bicycle commuter to beat the traffic. You're basically taking a gamble with your life if you are biking or walking due to the recklessness of drivers in this dump. The bus system is not completely awful, but do expect to be crammed into a bus next to the dregs of society, namely hipsters who don't wear deodorant and have their pits smelling like an anchovy's vag. There is a useless rail system which only serves the north side of town.
The cost of living is ridiculous. I have heard asinine arguments about how because the COL is not as high as SF or NYC it is somehow reasonable. It must be nice to have the privilege to make such a contrast. Unless you want to rent in a slum with high levels of property crime and low standards of living, expect to pay around 1K for a substandard studio apartment. The real estate market, which I admittedly have no direct experience with, is, on paper, BS. 350K is the median price. I guess its better than SF, right? Gentrification is a problem, especially in East Dump.
Completely overrated food scene. Disregard anyone making a recommendation in regard to food. I guess to the rubes who move here from Ohio or Missouri the food is exotic, but anyone with a discerning palate knows the food is dog crap. The taco arrogance here is astounding. I can get much better tacos back home in Dallas. Further, the folks I work with from the Rio Grande Valley, who know their tacos, have said the tacos here are a joke. It takes a real piece of work to cook lengua and have it turn out tough rather than tender.
The people are, by and large, rude and pretentious. Yuppie marketing and tech majors who fancy themselves the new elite dominate the city. This ain't the Dump of yesteryear, if it ever truly existed. There is no "down to Earth" element to be found. In fact, the people I've bonded with the most have been those who have seen the decline firsthand and agree that there is a major class conflict undercurrent which permeates society here. The cognitive dissonance here is astounding. Imagine whining about newcomers when you've been here a whopping two years after moving from New Jersey and applauding this dump becoming a "sanctuary" city.
The music scene, which I admittedly have limited interaction with, has nothing I couldn't get back home in Dallas. ACL is now an overpriced yuppiefest and the few venues I've been to were garbage as well. Don't waste your time on Dirty 6th or Rainey St.
Now comes the part where I get downvoted because "I just don't get it" and how I'm "just a miserable hater" because I don't buy into the Cult of ATX. There must be something wrong with me personally because, well, how could anyone not love this crowded, dusty, dump of a "city" that has live music and breakfast tacos? I obviously didn't experience the "real" Dump. If one is coming here for UT to get an education, I say go for it and then GTFO. If you have that "grass is greener" feeling when considering a move here, ignore it. You will only experience disappointment.
Clark | Austin, TX