1) It doesn’t matter how long you once lived in New York City. Once you’ve returned with a small child and decided what they’d really enjoy seeing is the bright, flashing lights in Times Square, all of your accumulated “New Yorker” cred is immediately revoked and you are reclassified “tourist.”
2) I’m sure there are many lovely, lovely parts of New Jersey. Sadly, none of them are visible from the turnpike.
3) In my unofficial tally of gigantic billboards promoting evangelical Christian causes or gun ownership, my conservative Midwestern home state has both Virginia and North Carolina beat cold.
4) Being refused beer because one left one’s ID in the car, despite being of legal age for more than a decade and a half, is almost flattering enough to cancel out how annoying it is. Almost.