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Why St. Louis Is A Terrible, No Good Place (GUEST POST)

Here’s another guest post from @J_D_P, who previously shared some tough love for Ted Leonsis.

There hasn’t been enough hate of the Cardinals in the discussions of the NLDS series so I thought I’d lend my hand. I lived in St. Louis the past three years and was very happy to escape back to civilization.

Not all of it is bad. The baseball stadium is great, their sports talk generally blows ours out of the water, and the cost of living is cheap as hell. But now that that is out of the way, it’s time to get into the hate.

1. Crime

Any discussion of why St. Louis sucks has to begin with the crime rate. Take your pick of lists of violent crime in America and St. Louis is consistently in the top-three. The latest FBI survey put St. Louis at No. 3 behind Flint and Detroit Michigan. Congrats St. Louis, you aren’t worse than Flint!

I was mugged in St. Louis, and nearly everyone I knew there had either been jumped or had their car broken into. Obviously this happens in any big city, but the scope of it is more in St. Louis. There’s no clear demarcation line between good and bad area. Just bad and worse areas.

Basically, you should never feel safe being in St. Louis. Even more mind-numbing is the city’s response to their crime problem has been to cut the amount of police officers. I shouldn’t be surprised by any of this at this point.

2. Generally Insular Community

St. Louis does not have a central downtown. It would probably claim that the area near the ballpark is. But there is never a collective mass of people there like in any other city. Downtown there are barely any street-level businesses. None of the office buildings have store fronts and there are no convenience stores. There is nowhere downtown to get coffee or food.

St. Louisans don’t find this to be a problem likely because they all flee the downtown anyways. This probably gets back to point one about there being a ton of crime and thus nobody wanting to be downtown.

In the mind of most St. Louisans the pinnacle one can achieve in life is to have some fake store-bought McMansion with cheap vinyl siding out in the suburbs. The term “white flight” must have been invented for this area. They place no value on cultural or aesthetic aspects of their community. Thus the city is decrepit and full of vacant lots.

This isn’t to say the people aren’t nice. They generally are. And you have lots of Cardinals fans who come from the boondocks anyway. But essentially it’s an area of 3 million “Joe the Plumbers.” Why have anything cultural when you can get all you need at the Walmart. St. Louis is too insular and too stupid to realize it, and, worse, they’re complacent and defensive about it. Thus it will never improve.

3. Food

St. Louis has several “iconic” food locations. Or so they claim. First, there’s their barbeque. It is massively overrated. The place that locals point to is Pappy’s which was also featured on Food Network’s Man vs. Food. Their big claim is they don’t put sauce on their meats because it is good enough without. Meanwhile they have jugs of sauces on every table that everyone douses their food in. Purely mediocre BBQ.

But rather than harp on what they claim is their best, its easier to pick out what is easily their worst product: provel pizza. This godforsaken creation is the worst abomination to masquerade as pizza. St. Louis-style pizza’s big claim to fame is that they invented their own cheese, which is so wildly popular that no one outside the city has heard of it.

Provel is basically a combination of the droppings of all other cheeses that is then melted together. Imo’s, St. Louis’ go-to pizza joint, then puts some tomato paste and this sham cheese on a cracker-style crust. Basically, never eat this piece of crap if you value your taste buds of intestines.

Maybe worse than the eating experience itself is when the rubes that live there defend it to the death. If you don’t like it you are some East Coast elitist. Well, if liking real pizza makes me an elitist, then give me my crown and bow down before me, you minions!

This goes beyond food actually. St. Louisans are incredibly defensive about their city and the Midwest in general. Granted, I’m spending my time here writing a post about why they suck, but it would be easier to accept St. Louis if they accepted the imperfections of their city rather than telling outsiders that they just don’t get it. I don’t want to get it.

4. Sports

Hear me out. I get that the Cardinals now have some great fans. They are pretty knowledgeable from my experience with them. They have great bars around the stadium. They win. Etc. But the other sports are insanely neglected.

The Blues made the playoffs last year and I went to games that weren’t even close to sold out. Nobody knew who any of the players were nor the coach that brought them to prominence. I’m sure many D.C. citizens didn’t know the Caps players until they got good too. So this goes beyond hockey.

The football team, which won a Super Bowl as the Greatest Show on Turf, can’t keep fans interested. Again, some interest will come with winning, but even in their near-playoff year when they lost to the Seahawks to miss out on a berth they couldn’t draw fans. All the complaints about their stadium are generally misplaced. It is nice enough and it’s at least in the city. Fans have no right to not go to games.

Don’t worry though, St. Louis has its own version of LaVar Arrington. DeMarco Farr, former Rams player, has a radio show in which he babbles about things he doesn’t know. Basically, outside of the Cardinals, the city is full of mediocre sports fans who don’t support their teams whether they have success or not.

5. Dumb Shticks

If you thought “Natitude” was embarrassing the Cardinals have you covered for a multitude of stupid shticks. They have their “Happy Flight” phrase, a Rally Squirrel, “Torty Craig” (Allen Craig’s pet tortoise), the hometown hero deification of David Freese (he of the two DUIs and public intoxication charges), and forgiveness of steroid user Mark McGwire. Then there’s the fickleness of their fans.

After Game 1 there were calls for manager Mike Matheny to be fired mid-series only to be lauded as a genius after pulling starter Jaime Garcia after two innings and then inventing an injury for him after the game. The Cardinals fans are all about their great tradition with luminaries like Lou Brock and Stan Musial. What do you think they would think about having a cheater as their hitting coach or a stuffed squirrel as their mascot?

Screw the Cardinals. I pray we win so I can gloat to all those rubes about how they suck.

D.C. sports fan and digital media guy that's been doing this since 2004. Once threw a football further than Chris Cooley.



  1. Fresh

    January 21, 2013 at 7:56 AM

    sounds to me like somebody here pissed you off, its ok though and let me correct you , you make saint louis sound like its from the stone ages, but yes wé have à central downtown there are coffee shops on every corner damn near you must bave stages right next to the stadium because you Were to afraid to leave the comfort if your hotel room, and stuck to the main streets LOL next hang out on Washington they have everything, yes the crime raté sucks unfortunately, and please you know damn well you like imos are you made because they mix all the cheese together wierdo, i hate baseball so i cant tell you shit about that but dude prêtre much every city here bas à downtown or a loop area which is beautiful they wit out play jazz catch all the delicious smells free style night for poets and freestylers, its awesome but yea it official somebody must have smelled that you was from out if town and scared you shitless LMMFAO!!!!!!

    • Duane Kilgore Jr

      April 28, 2014 at 2:41 AM

      At least no one can claim the public education in stl isn’t wonderful. No one here has a reading level above 4th grade. Worst grammar I’ve seen on the Internet. If anyone doubts this town (that fraudulently calls itself a city ) is full of rubes then read the above .

      • Cynthia

        June 16, 2015 at 2:25 PM

        Based on what you have written above. I can conclude that you believe that St. Louis has horrible education and no one has a reading level above 4th grade. However, a large majority of the seventh graders at Ladue have a Lexile that is equivalent to a college or graduate student. Lexile is a test that measures reading comprehension. Ladue has a great middle school Science Olympiad team, and the high schoolers have participated in many international competitions representing America. They have participated in competitions like National Math Olympiad, National Chemistry Olympiad and international piano and computer competitions. Therefore, next time you decide to mock St. Louis’ education, you should research and double check your sources first.

        • Sally

          June 16, 2015 at 2:26 PM

          Ooh, would you like some water for that burn?

          • Wut

            July 3, 2015 at 10:55 AM

            Cynthia/Sally, please don’t compliment your own posts.

    • Mike

      January 1, 2015 at 12:14 PM

      He is right. St. Louis is an awful place. It is the most highly segregated city in the country, very little opportunity if you are african-american, high crime, poor infrastructure, and declining population in the city and in the county. People living here, live in a state of pretense, pretending that everything is sunshine and roses.

      St. Louis is home to Washington University, an ivy league school. For some odd reasons, the graduates of Wash U catch the first plane smoking once they get their degree. The flee St. Louis in droves.

      It is ok to try to fool the public, but let’s not fool ourselves. Major changes are needed in this region to move into the 21st century.

      • Tom

        October 11, 2015 at 12:03 PM

        Just have to clarify. There are eight Ivy League colleges/universities in the USA, and Washington University, while a fine school, I’m sure, is, nonetheless certainly not one of them.

      • Pablo

        September 15, 2016 at 12:23 PM

        wash u isnt an ivy league school, its basically a chinese international college based in st louis

    • Rivka333

      November 6, 2015 at 7:07 PM

      You’re telling this person that he likes Imos? When someone’s just told everyone that he dislikes a type of food, what possible rational basis can there be for telling him that deep down he really does like that food?

    • miggymigmigga

      December 24, 2015 at 9:16 PM

      no it sucks there and saint louis is for bitches

  2. Fresh

    January 21, 2013 at 8:00 AM

    oh and to the people who think wé probably never left saint louis, fuck off, i was raised in georgia lived in milwaukee travelled to other states sooooooooooo what do you have to say now, hell dont visit less fuckin tourist in the fuckin way

    • Rivka333

      November 6, 2015 at 7:08 PM

      Some people would say that Georgia and Milwaukee aren’t that great either, and therefore aren’t the best basis for comparison.

    • Rivka333

      November 6, 2015 at 7:19 PM

      I’ve lived in the Middle Atlantic, Southern California, and St Louis. How do I feel about St Louis? Mixed feelings…mixed feelings…There are some cool things, but there are lots of other things that drive me up the wall.
      For some reason, it’s more fun to write about the things you hate about a place, than the things you love about it, and I suspect the author was doing just that.
      There are many things I do like about St Louis, but in the spirit of the above article, I won’t mention them.
      What do I dislike (in comparing it to other places I’ve lived)?
      Difficulty of finding good vegetables in the grocery stores (contrasted with San Diego county)
      Most restaurants are overrated by the locals. (There are a few good ones, hidden away,)
      Lousy drivers. St Louis drivers are really bad.
      Bad customer service. Really really bad. Not in every place in St Louis, but in enough places to be noticeable.
      Animal abuse. Would rather not go into detail here.
      Dogs not on leashes, dogs running away, getting loose all the time (hmm…wonder why?)
      So why do I live here? Well…it’s not all bad…But the good things aren’t so much fun to write about.

    • Dani Tempest

      November 7, 2015 at 12:42 AM

      Cynthia, you are proof of what makes St. Louis one of the worse places in the country to live. I have never in my life seen or been around more fragrant turds than you and people like you that dwell in that area. Your snobbery is over inflated and trust me, you aint keepin up with the Joneses as much as you and the losers in that area wanna perceive. Most of you can’t afford to leave that miserable town and those of you that can but choose to live there just shows your ignorance. One of the filthiest pieces of shit towns on the planet. You know this right? Oh wait no, people like you that live in Ladue or on the “better side of the tracks ” are better than the losers surrounding you. Ya know like the meth capital of the world Franklin Co.? Anyone that has ever lived in that stinking shit hole place and that has actually made REAL success and lived abroad in the US knows and laughs at you silly people. So based on your silly little comment “I can conclude” that you prove the point of the writer. You are proof why everyone should NOT live or visit that ugly place and the ugly fat people with over inflated ego’s that reside there.

  3. Fresh

    January 21, 2013 at 8:07 AM

    And truthfully if you can make it in saint louis you can make it anywhere beliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiieve me!!

  4. Zach Mourning

    February 1, 2013 at 6:40 PM

    First off I have lived in STL my whole life and went to Washington. Isn’t it rated the most unfriendly place in America, your blog post helps that stigma. I could use curse words or juvenile phrases to put my point across, BUT I won’t. Honestly you have some grudge against Saint Louis.
    Saint Louis is a nice city with the ability to be this massive city or small town. Our downtown does have millions of options to eat.Sorry our downtown doesn’t have a Walmart or Strip Mall. Saint Louis does have crime, but as any educated person knows the top ten rankings of crime rate are indeed flawed.

  5. Andrew Wind

    February 1, 2013 at 7:22 PM

    This hack is so uninformed, I’m not surprised he moved back to DC. Such cocksure stupidity could only be put to use working for the federal government. But I digress… We were talking about St. Louis.

    Let’s talk crime. Yea, it kinda sucks, but if he qualifies car break-ins and getting hassled as crime he must be so dickless I’d sooner choose my sister to back me up in a bar fight.

    The community… He thinks St. Louisans are nice?! Did he talk to any? Were they sober? Was he? I’ve never found a greater concentration of homophobic, neo-con segregationists anywhere else. Again, way off.

    Food… I live in New York. My friends are from all over the world. Those who’ve visited St. Louis with me are floored by how good the restaurants are — especially those downtown and in the old city neighborhoods. Maybe the author had a bad experience at Applebee’s on Kingshighway or couldn’t squeeze enough cash out of his crippled blogging gig to foot the bill at Blood & Sand, Farmhaus or Niche.

    While we’re on the topic, I’d love to see DC take the Pepsi challenge with its restaurants. Talk about a wasteland. Every time I visit, I come back looking like the ghost of Karen Carpenter because I can’t even find a good cup of coffee, let alone a good meal. I’d have better luck in Haiti.

    Last but not least, sports… Fuck yea.

    And fuck you.

  6. Anna

    February 1, 2013 at 7:22 PM

    There are no places to eat sownt

  7. maya

    February 1, 2013 at 7:27 PM

    No place to eat downtown?…rosalitas, Lucas park grill, rooster, papa johns, wasabi, sansai, panera, jade, jimmy johns, mosaic, jiving whale, culinaria, Starbucks, baileys range, some irish pub (o’malleys?) and not to mention tons of cafes/small places on Washington.
    Yup, no where at all.

  8. Andrew Wind

    February 2, 2013 at 2:06 AM

    Al’s, Blood & Sand (if you can get in), Copia, Blondie’s, City Diner, Tony’s, Buck’s, the Tap Room, Pickles, Morgan Street, Everest, Broadway Oyster Bar, Mizu, Eat Rite, Sen… the list could keep going and going.

    Anna, whoever you are, do you know what food is? Rather than list places to eat it, would it help more if we copied and pasted the definition of the word “restaurant?”

  9. huSTLer

    February 2, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    You sound like a real douche bag, please don’t come back to this city.. we don’t want you.

  10. Yes Man

    February 2, 2013 at 2:04 PM

    Fucking loser. I’ve lived all over the world and St. Louis is one of the greatest cities I’ve called home.

  11. MG

    February 6, 2013 at 12:14 PM

    Having lived now as a transplant for a year here now (lived in SF Bay area, Boston, Philly) I agree with some of the posts the author makes.

    Imo’s is absolutely disgusting and when I can make a better pie or Italian food at home it kind of defeats the purpose on eating there. Ditto anything Anheuser-Busch puts out although there are finally some decent microbrew companies starting to emerge that actually use good ingredients and really care about the quality of their products.

    Restaurant scheme here in general kind of sucks too. There are a few good and innovate restaurants but they are far and few in between. Limited decent ethnic food restaurants too. Your have to make a point of searching out for good food here and for places that sell good produce and ingredients.

    I can’t believe the author didn’t mention the single worst thing about living in St. Louis which is the weather. It might be one of the worst places in the U.S. Even crappier than living in Pittsburgh or Buffalo.

    Crime here is a real issue too but it is in Philly too. You just have to pay attention, use common sense, and know what parts of town to generally avoid after dark.

    As for the sports fans, I find them to be pretty much like most fans with the exception of the Cards’ fans. When the team is winning, people are interested and when they aren’t people are largely indifferent.

    Downtown does have a few okay areas but it is really lacking compared to most cities of its size. Baltimore, Providence, and several other smaller cities I can think of similiar size have a focal downtown area point that is nicer and a better destination point.

    St. Louis does have plenty of things going for it though. Cost of living here is cheap, housing is ridiculously affordable, and other costs are within reason. People are a bit insular but also friendly, polite, and affable. I loved going to school in Boston and living for a while afterwards there but there is a reason they invented the term ‘Masshole’

  12. smalltownguy

    March 13, 2013 at 4:05 AM

    I stumbled on this by accident…after living in STL for almost 4 years, I thought I’d give it a whirl and read it.

    So Jamie Mottram (and some other posters) hate St. Louis. …ok. and?

    Been downtown Chicago…was a neat city and would like to go back but won’t because of IL’s ridiculous gun control aka people control laws and the idiotic politicians and Liberalism in that state.

    Been to D.C and surrounding area half a dozen times. …there’s so much to do / see it’d take a year! Diversity sucks. Speaking of crime, family friend (Sheriff Deputy) told me he and his coworkers from back home were in DC for training, got lost, called the local police department for help. Local dept heard where they were and said “You’re where?! You need to get out of there now…WE dont even go there”.

    San Diego is cool (zoo, weather, etc).

    Miami is a neat town.

    Etc, etc etc. My point here is that I find it interesting how folks feel compelled to bash on STL like no other and then, try to argue that you’re dumb if you like STL pizza, I dont care what you say there isnt anything to do there, blah blah blah. I havent had Pappys BBQ but everyone I know (either local or out of state visitors) that eat there say its great. No where downtown STL to get food? Really? Ummm…did you ever go to Wash Ave or any of the other side streets downtown? The Landing? So everything is Jamie’s opinion, you’re entitled to it…doesnt make it right. (just as you or others that hate STL wont think I’m right)

  13. Mike Henry Jones

    March 23, 2013 at 4:28 PM

    D.C. Is ghetto. Nats blow…you’re not even a real city, but a barnacle on virgina and leech to Philly and new york. You probably got mugged because your an east coast homer who doesn’t understand the county and city populations. Baltimore (you know this as another east coast city that blows the doors off in comparison to fucking DC) is the same way city and county. Try doing some research before spouting off some ominous observation based on you degengerate opinion.
    The Washington caps, the wizard sleeves, and the Nats…Playoffs bitch. At least we have barbecue and pizza. You may not like it, and that’s your opinion…a shitty one but an opinion. DC is famous for?????? Oh yea food trucks. Nothing like blending carbon monoxide with a dog while you wait for a bus to get you out of this district and to a real city.
    DC is a bunch of can’t hack it new york wannabe’s….always will be. I’m glad I never met you in STL, cause I would slapped your whinny, self loathing ass over to East St. Louis, and you could express the segregation vomit speech over there. It that with some provel. This is the best reply you’ve gotten.

  14. skips

    April 8, 2013 at 4:40 PM

    In truth this became a fantastic indepth article even so as with every excellent writers there are some items that may be proved helpful upon. But never ever the particular a smaller amount it turned out exciting.

  15. chico williams

    May 9, 2013 at 4:47 PM

    I use to engage in the I hate St.Louis rants.After realizing how I sounded doing so,I decided to channel my energy toward getting out.I have enjoyed a lot of success in the 13 years I’ve been here so I wont diss.But I will disembark.

  16. Paul from San Diego

    May 9, 2013 at 7:55 PM

    Yes, I grew up in San Diego, and lived in Los Angeles. I’ve lived in St. Louis for a number of years, and I like St. Louis better.

    Number One Reason: I don’t spend 2 hours trying to get home every evening. After 2 hours every evening of having 20 million illegals illegally cutting you off, stalling in front of you, and illegally spewing fumes in your face that you know couldn’t pass at one of those smog checks, you have to scream and hit something, and it usually ends up being your own steering wheel while you are stuck, going nowhere on I-5.

    Beaches: In the summer, the beaches where the Mississippi and Missouri rivers meet are every bit as good as the beaches in San Diego, and they are never closed due to the Tijuana sewer backing up.

    Park: Now let’s compare Forest Park to San Diego’s equivalent, Balboa Park. At Forest Park, you have all those young, tall, skinny college students and nurses jogging around it due to all the colleges and hospitals that are around it. When you take all the tourists away at Balboa Park, all you have at the end of the day is a bunch of homeless people taking baths in those fountains, and fat, foreign nationalists who don’t want to date you since you are a white guy. I made out like a bandit in St. Louis, and now I have an extra 2 hours in the evening to enjoy those skinny legs at my condo in Clayton.

    Jobs: Ouch! Jobs for white/black guys are equally hard to find between St. Louis and San Diego.

    Sports: St. Louis is dedicated to the Cardinals while San Diego prefers to use their stadium parking as the Saturday Swap Meet. No one cares about the Padres because they are a bunch of slackers who just hang out at PB or OB and drink more Bud than the Cardinals even though the Bud Plant is much closer to the Cardinals.

    Food: San Diego has plenty of shark restaurants, but who wants to eat shark? Isn’t that some kind of dangerous, cancerous second-hand meat? I prefer an Elwood at Fast Eddy’s. Nowhere else in the world can you get brats as good as you can at Fast Eddy’s, because no one else has the Anheuser-Busch family recipe for beer brats. I’ll take that over shark any day.

    Have I said enough…Those 2 hours wasted in the evening in other cities is horrible…

    • pkm

      August 31, 2014 at 10:05 PM

      We left SoCal to get away from the millions of illegals. You are right about most everything in your post. I would add that if I tail gated cars
      like the redneck pickup driving rubes here I’d expect to get shot in LA

  17. Jhon

    June 19, 2013 at 1:38 AM

    I was born and raised in St.louis and lived there until I was 25. I find it to be one of the most stubborn, self-righteous, racist, knuckle dragging cities in America. I couldn’t wait to leave. When you do finally escape it’s closed minded contraints, you realize even more so how backward and hoosiery (St.Louis slang) it really is. Even the wealthy there have no real class. If you aren’t white and Christian and preferably Catholic, you really don’t belong. There are tiny pockets of interesting people but for the life of me I can’t understand what keeps them in this cesspool of ignorance. Good Riddance. I will never return. Incidentally, Imo’s is NOT pizza. It’s Cheez Whiz on a Ritz cracker. It sucks, just like St.Louis does.


      August 22, 2014 at 4:03 PM

      We’re glad you’re gone. You were stinking up the place.

  18. Jack Mehoffer

    August 26, 2013 at 7:09 AM

    Somehow I missed the local outcry over this idiotic rant until now. Ironically, I found it after I searched for “I hate DC” and thought to myself, “I wonder what people said about my city, St. Louis”. I can’t say I was too bothered since I’ve heard all of these criticisms before. Well, at least I wasn’t bothered until I learned that the author was originally from Washington, DC.

    I’ve traveled a lot in my lifetime, and I haven’t found many cities that I like more than St. Louis, nor have I found many cities I loathe more than Washington, DC. You want to talk about crime? It hasn’t been that many years since DC was the murder capital of the nation. And don’t get me started on the amount of white collar crime- the crooked politicians in both parties and the lobbyists are screwing over this entire nation. So we have your city to thank for that as well. You don’t have to wander far from the touristy parts of town to find some of the worst ghettos in America. You can talk about sports when you actually support your pathetic teams. Natitude? Seriously?

    But the people of Washington, DC are absolutely the worst. New York and even Boston are kind and gentle by comparison. DC people suck because they are smug, supercilious, narcissistic, and completely rude. They will stare you down, mow you down as you get on and off Metro, they cannot drive, and everything they do and everywhere they go is better and more important than whatever you’re doing or wherever you’re going. Oh, and then there are the politicians and lobbyists hell-bent on destroying our national way of life for their own personal enrichment and power. Yes, everything odious about DC can be traced back to its people.

    Meanwhile, the observations the author made about St. Louis were exactly as superficial and absurd as I’d expect from a DC native. Crime is bad here, just as it is in many major cities, but I live in the City of St. Louis and spend a lot of my time in many city neighborhoods, and I don’t feel unsafe. Downtown is not even close to what the author described. Over seven billion dollars have been invested in downtown over the last decade, over 10,000 residents have moved in, and many restaurants and specialty shops have located in downtown as well. Streets that were admittedly desolate years ago are now thriving.

    This renaissance has also taken place in other neighborhoods like The Loop, CWE, Soulard, South Grand, and Lafayette Square. These areas are also home to excellent restaurants and great local businesses. Whatever the St. Louis food scene lacks in quantity, it makes up for in quality. If the author focused on pizza and BBQ, obviously he didn’t look all that hard anyway. Never mind the wonderful and traditional Italian food on The Hill or the wide array of African and Asian restaurants on South Grand- there is a wide variety of excellent food throughout the city and inner suburbs.

    Like I said, you can talk about sports when they become more relevant than your admittedly irrelevant blog. In the two-plus decades since Washington had its last national championship, the Rams have won the Super Bowl, and the Cardinals have won two World Series. Blues fans are long-suffering but fiercely loyal. We don’t have an MLS team (yet), but the enthusiasm for soccer is incredible. Fans are knowledgeable, passionate, and unlike DC, committed to their teams.

    I’d also like to say that St. Louis has some of the best people I’ve seen anywhere. Sure, you can find some classless and oafish sports fans and make stereotypes based on them, just as you can in other cities. But there is something to be said for Midwestern friendliness. People are unfailingly polite when you greet them, because, you know, we greet strangers and don’t sneer at them like they do in DC. Some will point out racial and class divisions, but as someone that lives in a diverse city neighborhood, I simply don’t see that in my daily interactions with friends and neighbors. Approach the world in a hostile manner and judge everything by race and class, and that’s what you’ll see no matter where you live. The remark about culture is also ridiculous- people support St. Louis’ many top-notch cultural institutions passionately. And speaking of public support, St. Louis is the 19th largest metro area, yet it consistently ranks in the top 10 metro areas in philanthropy. This is a city that cares about others, as well as the institutions that make living here a pleasure for those of us that are willing to open our eyes and not judge everything and everyone superficially, which is exactly what I expect from someone that calls Washington, DC home.

  19. private

    September 20, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    I’m really just going to mention the crime and location (everything else is the original poster personal opinion). Lets get some things cleared. Crime rate: yes, St Louis crime is always in the top 5. If one knows anything about crime status understand that it’s based off population. On top of that please understand all cities have good and bad. No centeral downtown: correction, St Louis MO has two central downtowns. Downtown St Louis & Downtown Clayton (which is also located in St Louis). I have no clue about the comment on stores and others.

    I lived in a loft Downtown St Louis from 2004-2012. St Louis Macy’s headquarters is located in Downtown St Louis. Which happens to be across the street from a convenience store and down the street will be another. There are plenty of bars, clubs, restaurants, boutiques, etc located Downtown. However, Downtown St Louis is a business city in the day and a party scene at night.

    Research St Louis as a whole and you will find very interesting facts. This is a city of old money. With that being said, the old saying “it’s all about who you know” really does apply to this city. St Louis is not a show boat town that becomes ghost at night (ie. Downtown Chicago).

    Based off the posters views it is understood that the poster automatically had a pre notion before coming to the city, the poster must have stayed in a rough neighborhood (what city doesn’t have one of these), if not stayed in one stayed near a rough neighborhood, and if $2,000 for a 1bedroom that may or may not have a washer and dryer in unit is cheap in this economic crisis then go ahead with your bad self.

    This city comes to life at night. Take a ride downtown on a weekend night and then come back and post what you witness. Please pay attention to poster’s post at your own risk. It is very, very incorrect.

    To give background on myself: I am party of the old money. With property in St Louis, Chicago, and Miami Beach (in the same price range)

  20. Sam

    February 4, 2014 at 3:58 PM

    I grew up in STL and lived there for about 25 years. I have a lot of good memories. I had many fun times at Cardinals games, the zoo, The Magic House, Blues games, and other attractions. That said, I am SO GLAD to be out of there. Naturally if you live there and haven’t lived anywhere else you will be defensive. You don’t see it from an outsiders perspective and you want to make the best of what you have. But seriously, it does kind of suck. :-) My family & friends that still live there mostly want out. The ones that do like it are comfortable there b/c they’ve never lived anywhere else and don’t know any different.

    #1 (Crime) – yeah it sucks. Even the suburbs get their fair share.
    #2 (Insular) – This is so true. Seriously, people who don’t live there consistently describe the city as “segregated.” White middle-upper class? West County. Hoosier? South County or St. Charles. Black? North County or East St. Louis. There is a reason everyone asks what high school you went to.
    #3 (Food) – Maybe Imo’s isn’t the greatest, but The Hill has amazing Italian restaurants. There are good restaurants in every city anyway.
    #4 (Sports) – I still love the Cardinals & Blues, but the Rams suck.
    #5 (Dumb schticks) – Eh, some people think they’re fun.

    I’d have to agree with Chuck, ravenhairedmaid, and Mike’s comments. And to the commenter that said, “People are unfailingly polite when you greet them b/c you know, we greet strangers and don’t sneer at them…” Really??? Somehow I’ve completely missed this friendliness. The city is chock full of insecure, rude & judgmental people who put on airs. Now, it’s always risky to say the WHOLE city is like that b/c of course there are nice people (I’m from there haha), but that’s the feel overall. STL thinks it’s east coast. LOL

    The whole city is unorganized and the streets are in crappy condition. It takes them YEARS to do any sort of construction project on the roads. And downtown is awful. It’s old, ugly, and dirty. Is all of this harsh? Yes. Is it true? In my opinion. It’s all a matter of perception…

  21. Dave

    February 14, 2014 at 11:02 PM

    Your article hit it right on about stl. It is a shithole full of highly segregated areas, thinly veiled racism, a sense of supremacy coming from God knows where. I had to live there for 4 years but only for career advancement. Arch? Eww soo impressed. Being from KC where tailgating is the best thing to do in my opinion, trying to tailgate at a rams game was an embarrassement. Hope you like drinking a beer in your car in a parking garage. I liked Pappys, Imos occasionally and the Hill did have good Italian. Other than that, I think Monsanto has poisoned the water to get people to act so weird compared to the rest of the U.S. And I should know, I travel for a living! Weird people, very unfriendly to “outsiders”, and really, who gives 2 shits about “what high school” you went to. Really? Hahahaha I always laughed at that question.

  22. Lori

    February 25, 2014 at 2:09 PM

    The city is old, ugly, very ragged. IMO it’s quite uninteresting in that there are no mountains, no no beaches, no palm tree’s etc…The supposed low cost of living is really not true, because for the lower cost you end up with an old outdated apt, or home. It just sucks in alot of ways. Anyone who would choose to stay in STL that has the means to leave is crazy.

  23. Marissa

    March 10, 2014 at 1:27 PM

    OK, there are better cities and worse cities. But St. Louis has plenty of great restaurants. There are a lot of parks. Always free outdoor concerts all summer long. A free zoo, lots of museums, including the City Museum which is unique and really cool. All kinds of outdoor festivals. Plenty of bars and clubs. I see plenty of diversity on my job. Forest Park has all kinds of things. There is a central Downtown. I admit, it used to be better than it is now, but they are working on bringing it back. It’s not as good as it could and hopefully will be, but better than it was. There are plenty of apartments and houses that are nice and not raggedy. There are good and bad neigborhoods, some just block away from each other. It happens. There are friendly and unfriendly people. I live in the city where I cant walk to bars or restaurants if I want to. I hate the suburbs and urban sprawl.

    All you haters can go to hell. Buh-bye.

    • Marissa

      March 10, 2014 at 1:32 PM

      I meant where i CAN walk to bars and restaurants. BAD TYPO!!!

    • Shock Girl

      April 25, 2014 at 3:12 PM

      Marissa: “All you haters can go to hell. Buh-bye.”

      LMAO. Classic.

      But the bad news is this: St. Louis IS hell. West County is purgatory.

  24. Matt

    April 14, 2014 at 1:56 PM

    And any discussion that starts off with (here we go again) the crime rate proves that the person making the argument is an idiot with an agenda. Anyone with half a brain could see that St Louis, unlike Chicago, New York, LA and Detroit is not in a county. All of the burbs are in a county. The burbs’ crime numbers (or lack of) are not factored into the overall crime numbers like they are in the other cities. If you really think you would rather be in Detroit, or South Central LA, or East LA, or West Chicago or South Chicago, or Harlem than ANYWHERE in St Louis, you are either lying or a complete retard. Period.

  25. joe klein

    April 21, 2014 at 5:49 AM

    St. Louis catholic De Smet Washington U.

    Dirtiest White people rich or poor i have ever known, “nice” there not nice there surviving if you insult someone you end up dead or beat. The Black communities are the only thing that keeps this town alive.

    My mom is a former Urban Irish racist my Dad is a cold
    german farmer.

    Belgrade Serbia is paradise compared to St.louis even after a 10 year civil war.

    good luck St. Louis the longer you stay the more dysfunctional you become.

    Croatia Sea is for god you do not know good Europeans live even the poor.

    St. louis makes you tough buts its not worth it if you pride your self on your toughness you don’t have much thats the truth.

    good luck St. Louis go easy on the blacks

  26. Shock Girl

    April 25, 2014 at 3:07 PM

    Did you mention defensive? LOL…reading through the comments proved that one right.

    I’m unfortunate enough to live in one of the burbs of this foul city. St. Louis is a complete stinkhole. I enjoyed reading this post…hahahaha.

    I’m not a native, although am from rural buttfuque Illinois. Even a watering hole like Kinmundy, Illinois beats St. Louis. The people are cleaner and smarter.

    Love the Cards, though, rain or shine. So many Cards fans are fair-weather fans. They start off the season jabbering about how much they suck, and by the post season they’re slobbering all over themselves.

    • Dani Tempest

      November 7, 2015 at 12:52 AM

      You described St Louis and the people that live there perfectly!

  27. JAred

    June 25, 2014 at 6:27 PM

    I don’t know what part of downtown you were in, but you are crazy lol. There are gelato shops, many reatuarants, coffee shops, and shooed downtown. St.louis is the mother state of many flourished businesses. I agree crime is crazy. Not many cities have a close knit area such as how close SLU is I the CWE and Downtown. Not to mention, you can get luxury apartments, lofts, condos, and homes way cheaper than other states. Our public attractions are mostly free to the public, medical practice here is well known across the nation. Schooling is excellent, SLU, Wash U, UMSL, etc. even high schools, most are now college prep, including the one I graduated from. Continuous growth in the city, especially the CWE. We will be having an IKEA in our city next year, not everyone can say that. That says a lot in itself. More hotels being built, Clayton and Downtown are the staple for businesses in our city. This guy is insane, and probably never left his home/apartment. I have a friend who moves here from Minnesota within the last 2 years, and I bet she has more knowledge about the city than this numbskull.

  28. Big Lee

    October 15, 2014 at 3:57 PM

    Love the States, was in St Louis recently for NFL game, from tourist point of view St. Louis isn’t really on the map but it has a NFL team so it was on my USA bucket list. Been lucky enough to have traveled to fair number of places all over States and St Louis gets a bad rap. There were some really nice bars downtown, ate some great food, met some friendly locals. Now here’s the balance, from outside point of view can also see St Louis has challenges and it would be wrong not to say from a limited snap shot that could see there are some real issues. Why is it that a city like Pittsburgh, that lost it’s major founding industrial base can successfully really rejuvenate itself but St Louis hasn’t managed to do this to the same level? Wish St Louis all the best for the future and hope the bits that are wrong with St Louis improve for the locals, they deserve better.

  29. Joshua

    December 4, 2014 at 12:05 PM

    I spent a great deal working in St. Louis, and living near the area. St. Louis has a lot of great places to visit for tourism. Although I would’nt recommend visiting these places alone, the crime rate is bad and of course cannot deny that. However, I lived away from the city in a small rural community which was not so bad. I was not happy at first about moving to St. Louis, but overtime I knew I had to do my part to make the best of it, and for the most part it was not so bad. I did have some good times there, I do now live in Charlotte North Carolina area and like it here a lot better, but there are things in St. Louis I also miss being able to do. St. Louis sucks only really if you have a really bad attitude I had that attitude and found out some of it was me. You have to go and get involved.

  30. april

    February 5, 2015 at 2:04 AM

    I agree with it all. St Louis, MO sucks! I want to die young if I’ll never have a chance to leave this God forsaken place. The people are ignorant, rude and selfish. I always have to watch my back no matter what neighborhood I’m in. I have to deal with west county assholes who want all the benefits of a big city but not deal with any of the problems. The Midwest is the heartland of america and saint Louis just might be the butt.

  31. lucille

    March 2, 2015 at 1:14 PM

    I’ve lived in st Louis mo for four years now and this city truly sucks for black people, I wish I had researched more before I moved but I still have a chance to get out….Yes i cant waste my energy trying to convince the people here that it sucks coz they so defensive, I’d rather use my energy trying to get out of this hole…

  32. Ray

    March 31, 2015 at 8:58 PM

    Lived here since 1958. I can truly agree this city had changed where I live. So don’t debate with me about the truth . Seeing is knowing. South area is now full of migrated trash.

  33. Kelly

    April 6, 2015 at 2:23 PM

    Joe Klein is an idiot. The black community is keeping St. Louis alive? Carjackings, break-ins, rolling shootouts, hatred for the police, and nightly murders: these are its contributions to the quality of life in St. Louis. The black “community” destroyed the Northside and is now doing the same to the Southside. The few areas that are trying to move forward are under siege by “youths” (e.g. the Loop, Washington Ave). The number one worst thing about this city is the black “community”. No wonder white people left. Who wouldn’t?

  34. Hater

    April 12, 2015 at 2:25 PM

    I grew up in NJ and have lived here for the last 15 years. My wife is from here and she wanted to move back home. I must have been drunk because I agreed. I absolutely hate living here. Terrible food, Imos is so disgusting! I have never seen more white trash in one place in my life. I am Italian and the hill sucks! I wake up every morning that I am stuck in this hell hole.
    Cardinals fans are beyond annoying. I can’t take it.

    • Laura

      October 29, 2015 at 5:12 AM

      You can Move, really! I grew up in St Louis, couldn’t believe it when my fiancée told me in no uncertain terms that we were not going to stay. Best decision ever. Moved to Florida, love the locals, love the weather, love the water, flora, and fauna. St. Louis was good, has some great aspects like anywhere. But my uncle who had left as a young man, would occasional come back to visit would say, ‘The world is a big beautiful place. You really need to see it!’ He was right. St Louisians are like any other people anywhere. I’ve met people from all over and many people won’t consider leaving their town of origin because of family, friends and memories tied to a place. I packed up my memories, kept in touch with some friends and family and set out to try something new. Never regretted it. One other thing, women from St. Louis make the best wives. Hemingway married three, and Gretsky is still on his first!

  35. Wut

    July 3, 2015 at 11:18 AM

    I don’t know what people who say St. Louis is friendly are talking about. I’ve lived in North and Mid-County and people there are happy to give you the cold shoulder. People in my apartment complex were actually surprised and borderline scared when you greeted them.

    However, if you go to the more affluent areas like West County the people there are polite and much more likely to say excuse me if they bump into you.

    • MG

      December 3, 2015 at 12:24 AM

      People in St Louis aren’t friendly at all but oddly natives who grew up their get very offended when you mention this observation.

  36. Owen

    August 12, 2015 at 2:15 AM

    i’ve been here all day and i can’t believe how HORRIBLE St Louis’s downtown is; ridiculously bad. Just came from Louisville; 1000x’s better (yet smaller…). St Louis reminds me of the (also) AWFUL Cleveland downtown. I couldn’t imagine living here; any time spent in a ‘good’ city would turn you off this place REAL quick. Sad, depressing, mostly BORING.

    • Tink

      February 9, 2016 at 5:47 PM

      Had you gone to the City Museum at 16th & Washington, you’d probably feel differently. If you’re stuck in our terrible city again you might find some redemption for it at the City Museum. It truly is a wondrous and unique find – certainly not BORING.

  37. Current transplant, cute things abt STL but leaving

    October 5, 2015 at 3:17 AM

    Actually the OP was spot on. I moved to STL from a large west coast city in 2013 and now I know it was a mistake.
    Yes, this town has its cute characteristics…*possibly blind* devotion to sports,. and certainly dirt cheap cost of living – but the ridiculous ‘where’d you go to school’ – refers to high school – REALLY?

    • Tink

      February 9, 2016 at 5:55 PM

      You’re right, it is ridiculous. But St. Louis cut it’s teeth as a blue collar town. Advanced education was not all that common. Instead we went to work. Personally, I haven’t heard anyone say it in years except as a joke.

  38. Sir Count

    October 23, 2015 at 1:31 PM

    So I take it that nobody hads nothing else better to do with there time than to talk about there past St. Louis experiences first and far most let me let everybody in on a secret I was born & raised in s t. Louis the bottom line is it’s all in what you make it out to be in your own experience so a lot of people who had a problem with that need to have a psychological check-up meaning you need to go get your head examined cause just about every state associated with the U.S has some kind of crime problem

  39. 4365145

    October 28, 2015 at 12:24 AM

    I lived in STL from 1959 to 1981. I am so happy I escaped to a better life elsewhere. I am white, but the racist environment in STL doesn’t do any good for anybody. It’s just “the way it is”—a cycle of pain that no individual can stop, apparently. I had the misfortune of returning once for a business trip and traveling through my old neighborhood (a mile from Ferguson). I can say that Calcutta India (which I also visited for business) easily has more economic vitality.

  40. Megan

    November 1, 2015 at 3:24 AM

    I have one serious regret so far in my life and that is living in St. Louis for 4 years. It is truly awful. I’m so happy to be back home in Chicago. St. Louis could disappear off the face of the earth for all I care. There is nothing good there.

  41. Acantha

    December 15, 2015 at 8:36 AM

    Worst city ever. At least so far, Atlanta wasn’t that great either. But heaven forbid you need a package delivered or keep your money in your pocket or your belongings in your house. Scratch that. Just don’t work. There is no point, you’ll work and someone low-life will take it from you one way or another. Never used to be racist. Sure am now, Thanks St. Louis.


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  43. Tink

    February 9, 2016 at 1:44 PM

    I’m homegrown St. Louis. There are definitely points in the author’s article. This city is very segregated and thus largely racist. Blacks don’t like whites and whites don’t like blacks. We complain about Bosnians or any new group of immigrants to take up residence in our city. To the person who said we were a bunch of homophobes, they got that wrong. The reigning comment (be it stereotyping or not) is that when the gays move in, property values goes up. Really, the culture of racism is the big issue & probably the root of all the issues with this city.
    Crime – yes that’s a biggie too. Statistically, more crimes against persons are committed by black males, thereby reinforcing the racism. I can’t say I have the answers to resolving race issues. It bothers me that in the 21st century it still exists. If we can ever get neighborhoods mixed I think we can progress beyond the 19th century.
    Weather – someone commented about the weather and they were spot on. If you don’t have allergies just move here.
    Food – I’ll disagree with that one. I like Imo’s, even though I was in my 20’s before I ever had it. I like Pork Steaks slow cooked & smothered in BBQ sauce (the good stuff with acidity that makes them melt in your mouth delicious). I like the many farmers markets around town and the home grown restaurants throughout our area. We’re still all about a heart attack on a plate though so we could be a whole lot healthier.
    Downtown – when I was a little girl, my grandma would take us on a bus to look at all the storefront windows with the Christmas decorations. It was a bustling place back then. It went through a deadly decline. BUT it’s been on the upswing for a while. Washington Street is hopping, the City Museum is always packed, the Gateway Arch is going through a massive transformation, Union Station is making grand improvements which include a giant Ferris wheel & Ballpark Village is busy even when there isn’t a Cardinals game.
    Roots – St. Louis is a multi-generational kind of town. We grow up here and we stay. We are mostly Catholic and we’re family oriented. Don’t bring the hate for that. We’re proud of it. I’m friends with the cousins I grew up with. I hang out with my sisters all the time and have connections with nieces and nephews that many would envy. We rally for those in need and have Trivia Nights and Mouse Races at our church gymnasium to help raise funds for someone in need. This is the best part of our community.
    And because of this we have pride and why we’re insulted when people insult our town. But the truth is, when people don’t like us we feel misunderstood and don’t look at ourselves to see what we could do better. And frankly, St. Louis could do better by asking themselves that very question.

  44. Saint Louis Born + Raised

    February 22, 2016 at 5:09 PM

    I have lived in Saint Louis all my life I love it. Is it perfect? NO. but no city is.
    I’m not here to say my city is the best but I am here to give it a fair chance for position.
    the comments about the crime I went to new York and constantly checked my pockets to make sure my phone and wallet was still there. I went to Memphis and there are signs all over about locking you car door for auto thief. Everywhere there are house break-ins and thief’s all over the place in America so that’s not relevant.
    The food: you must not have walked outside at all or went anywhere. Imo’s is not the only thing we are know for how was the St. Paul. I love Imo’s but you usually love what you grew up on so I cant say that is really is nasty or not my opinion is its good.
    as for downtown I heard it was better when I was a child but from what I see they have come up adding in new things all the time I see this was made in 2012 so I don’t fault you for your ignorance.
    the sports fans in Saint Louis are incredible no matter how many times the rams lost their were people buying their jerseys and going to the games. I for one will always be a Rams even though left. which a lot of people are mad about which further shows their dedication to the team. Anytime there’s a Cardinals game you can’t get downtown by car your better off using the Metro Link just too many people.
    I walk by myself a lot during the night time and I feel safe as ever I live in North county and I have never had a problem with crime done to me. saying this anywhere you go you have to watch your back no where you go is the crime rate 0%.(sorry)
    to say the least Saint Louis is home

  45. Christina

    September 6, 2016 at 4:26 PM

    I know that this is an old story, but I have to absolutely AGREE with the writer. I am a transplant from Cincinnati, Ohio. You know what they say, You don’t know know what you have until its gone. Relocating by way of proposal, I am trying to find any and every opportunity to get right back to Cincinnati! Looking for a progressive city? Its not St. Louis. The people here (mainly the african american population) still live like they are 2nd class citizens. They still walk around as if they are still oppressed! Insular?! Absolutely! The author is right, those who live here (and love it) defend the city as if their lives depended on it, but St Louis does not need any defending, it needs a major face lift and a push into the 21st century. Diversity? Nope. Not at all. I live in North County (north hood) and if I see another ethnicity other than African American, I have to look twice to make sure my eyes haven’t deceived me. Who wants to live in a city that doesn’t celebrate diversity? Take a trip to South County, and they are still racially profiling (and yes, I have witnessed it with my own eyes AND was told by a Caucasian resident this truth). Really? The salaries in St. Louis. Ridiculous. I am making about $15K LESS than what I could make in Cincinnati on the low end of the scale. Scary. Needless to say, I will only be in St. Louis for as long as it takes for us to sell the house that we have in a declining neighborhood that we are more than likely to take a $100K loss. Oh well.

  46. WESLEY

    January 8, 2017 at 2:48 AM

    I was born here in Saint Louis, not something I often brag about. I have traveled the world, and have been to every state in the Union (I drove an 18 wheeler.) St.Louis is, by far, one of the worst citys I have ever been to….it’s packed with ignorant people who have no or low education. it contains a plethora of narrow minded racists. every single cop is a crooked asshole who will bend the law as he sees fit. most women in stl walk around with a tree branch stuck up their ass. the food is good, so is imos and elicias. there is absolutely zero places to eat after 10pm, and I still can’t figure that one out. crime is everywhere, not just stl.
    nightlife is pretty much non existing and the weather/humidity is nearly unbearable.

    on the plus side, there is a pretty good bike seen if you like 100mph + and wheelies!

    saint louisian’s could really help themselves out by dropping the whole “where did you go to high school?” umm, who the fu*k cares? why is it relevant? small town, narrow minded, conservative, assholes

  47. Cashmeousside Howbowdah

    February 3, 2017 at 1:42 PM

    This is such a poor representation of Saint Louis, with little sprinkles of truth. So much of this anecdote is totally unfounded. I have lived in Saint Louis my entire life, and have never experienced any crime. Obviously the crime is there, and it is sad. However, LARGE areas and neighborhoods in Saint Louis are not only safe, they are very much aesthetically pleasing. I do not know how anyone could seriously insult a school like Washington University. Or what is even wrong with SLU, Webster, or UMSL? Saint Louis is one of the cheapest places to live, and dozens of free activities and establishments are open to the public (all of our museums, the zoo, pretty much anything in Forest Park). There is a lot of history and culture found in Saint Louis, as well. It saddens me that someone would not at least research a topic before presenting such a biased article, while having a chip on their shoulder. There are many flaws in Saint Louis, but there are also many positives, as well. I wish I could take the person who wrote this article, and show them Saint Louis from a local’s perspective. Then again, this person seems awfully angry and full of contempt.

  48. Calvin

    February 14, 2017 at 8:19 PM

    Lol right on point!! I wonder what the average IQ is around this place, I have under 60 days left here and I’ve never in my life wanted days to pass like I do right now!!:St. louis sucks, dumb asses!! Go cubs!!

  49. Glenn A Youngman

    April 18, 2017 at 5:01 PM

    Great article. White flight was invented in East St Louis, so you are correct.

    As for not filling stadiums, why risk your life going to and from?

    That place is a crap hole where everyone thinks they are a high level business exec or a rapper driving Bentleys when it is really full of dumbtards driving recycled american brand rental cars purchased at a buy here pay here lot on weekly payments.

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