Social Morris

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Things I don't know.

Today, I present you with a completely random list of things that I just cannot seem to figure out.

1. Summer is coming...will sporting a pair of Crocs raise or lower my MSSR?

2. What is the significance to the references to the Eagle's club in the comments? Should I consider pledging my allegiance?

3. Did the fire department really auction a ride on a fire truck at their recent fundraiser? I overheard this at the park last weekend and don't know if it is accurate or just another leaf on the grapevine. If it is true, those firemen sure do have a sense of humor!

4. Why did Movie Gallery close? And more importantly, how long will it be before a tanning and/or hair salon moves into the vacated space?

5. Has Starbucks really decided not to open a store in Morris? I was counting on my ability to order an exotic coffee drink and elegantly tote it around to various local functions to be an aid in raising my MSSR.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

In search of a bronze glow and the perfect swing.

In an effort to raise my MSSR, I’ve found it necessary to take a brief hiatus from the blog. For the past several weeks, I have been diligently tanning at the multitude of salons in town trying to achieve that perfect bronze glow. (My thanks to a blog commenter who pointed out that tanning is a true passion of the natives. I’ll admit this is something I hadn’t noticed until now.) As I was lying in the tanning bed one evening, it struck me to ponder if there is local significance to the ratio of tanning salons to bars…

In an effort to raise the MSSR of my offspring, I’ve enrolled them in every sports performance program and private coaching I can find, for I’ve realized that athletic perfection is the holy grail to which my children should aspire if they ever hope to achieve local acceptance. Many thanks to the friend who recently pointed out to me that participants as young as 5 years old are ranked by their coaches yearly, in both the MSA and MAA. Silly me, I thought kids’ sports was for fun and learning…especially at the age of 5. Watch out, Morris! Next season when the pro-style draft occurs, my kid’s gonna score higher than your kid!

All kidding aside, what message does this send to our children? Why is it that this town whole-heartedly embraces youth sports programs, complete with secret player rankings and practices up to 5 days a week, yet little or no gifted or accelerated programs are offered in our schools to emphasize and reward academic excellence?

Monday, February 11, 2008

So...when is the next PTA meeting?

So, I was thinking recently that I wouldn’t feel like such an outsider if I actually had some friends in town. As it is now, I find myself driving out of town to meet friends from work or places we’ve previously lived. This touches on two key issues. One is the fact that there is very little to actually do in Morris…. a subject for a future post.

The second and most pressing at this time is that there seems to be no way to break into the social scene in Morris. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to be in the “in crowd”. I know and accept my limitations, at least as they pertain to my Morris Social Status Rating (aka. MSSR). However, it would be really nice to have friends in the neighborhood to get together with for summertime BBQs, a game of cards or dinner and drinks.

I’ve tried to make friends….chit chat at a ballgame, idle talk with a parent at a school event, etc. These end in two general catastrophes. 1) I realize I’ve unknowingly tried to talk with someone clearly out of my MSSR and find myself the subject of odd stares and behind-the-hand whispers by those in the know -- or 2) The object of my attempt at friendship, them self, has previously fallen to the spoils of catastrophe #1 and they’re too gun shy to continue the conversation, fearful that they may also be speaking to someone out of their MSSR.

I’m a college educated professional and haven’t had any trouble making friends up to this point, so I don’t believe I’m a social pariah. This dilemma really perplexes me. Maybe there should be a secret code word for those of us looking for local friends…something that identifies us as being open to accepting new people into our social circle. (Social circle of one, in my case, but open to expansion nonetheless.) I have to find an answer to the dilemma or I may find myself suddenly attending PTA meetings in yet another misguided attempt at making friends.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Still lookin' for the party....

So...where was the place to be seen last night for the big Superbowl game? Clearly not in my living room as I was the only one who happened to be in attendance at that particular location. What do the fine people of Morris do for the Superbowl and other such events? Is this one of those 'gather at the bar' occasions or is the trend to gathering at someone's house?

And speaking of bars? With so many to choose from in town, could someone fill me in on the protocol? Where do I go if I want company? Where do I go if I'm just in it for the booze? Is there a dance bar here? Are all the rumors about 312 true....and will the new owners keep it up? Seriously, the choices (as well as rumors) are overwhelming.

And if anyone wants to share that secret back room knock....

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Hospital Ball, Correspondent Needed

The grand Morris Hospital Auxiliary Ball is coming up. Sadly, I was not able to secure an invitation so I shall have to relive the event through the dazzling pictures and commentary in the Morris Daily Herald for yet another year. Maybe next year my blogsphere popularity will boost me into the ranks of those welcomed to participate in the festivities. I really would like to go...

If anyone is lucky enough to go, keep good notes! I'd love a guest post from you with an update on THE Morris social event of February. Drop me an email at if you're interested in this poorly paid, yet emotionally rewarding guest blogger position.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Social Morris

There are already a number of blogs devoted to the political arena in Morris. This blog, however, has been created to capture commentary on the social climate in Morris.

There seems to be great social divide among the people of Morris, a definite hierarchy based not on income or ability, but rather on whether one is a Morris Insider or a Morris Outsider. An Insider, clearly self-crowned the elite group, is someone born and raised here. An Outsider is someone that was not.

As an outsider, it doesn't matter how long you've lived here, how involved you are in the area schools/churches/activities ... only that you are not a native. This stigma even seems to apply to the children of outsiders, despite the fact that they may have been born and raised right here in Morris. They are still outsiders. Guilty by association.

In the interest of full disclosure, I will say that I am an outsider. I have experienced first hand this social divide. Am I personally offended by it? Not so much, actually. I find it more intriguing than anything else. It's an interesting dynamic to observe.

So, what is your experience with the social climate in Morris? Are you an insider or an outsider? Do you notice the division? Post a comment, share your experiences....