Suburban Life vs. Inner City Living with Aaron Gocs
Most of my life I’ve lived in the suburbs, apart from a very brief three month period of inner city living (which saw the price of my schooners sky rocket). Maybe that’s why I have a love/hate relationship with the suburbs. The suburbs embody who I am as a person – which can be frustrating and comforting at the same time, kind of like those coin operated massage chairs. Footy clubs, shopping centres, fast food restaurants – these are my people and places.
The smell of freshly cooked chicken and chips as it wafts out of the takeaway shop mixed in with the burnt rubber aroma of the local Holden Commodores doing burnouts is a suburban classic. And if you don’t smell the burnout you can either see or hear Gavin as he sticks his head out the window and shouts to his mates to check out his sick burnout.
Only in the suburbs can you have a yarn with a local named Keith who “could have been anything if his knee didn’t blow out during his days in the under 18s”. He usually swears this is the week he’s going to win the meat raffle too. Close but no cigar…again.
Sometimes I look at these things and think, “Is this it??” then other times I think “Hell yeah! This is it!!” But it seems like these days the inner city is where people want to be in most major Australian cities. So I thought I’d share my opinion on which is better.
Mocha vs. Meat Raffle: The Eternal Struggle
What actually constitutes a suburb? After all, it’s all just a combination of residential and light commercial properties (I learnt that one from those Sim City games) Well I’ve created a list of tell tale signs:
Trolleys: Are there a large number of abandoned shopping trolleys? You just don’t see trolleys go walkabouts the closer you get to the city. So the more you see them, the more you know a bunch of old mates have left them countless stones throws from Coles.
Dirt Bikes: Are kids cruising around on dirt bikes? This is another good indicator that you’re in the suburbs. Particularly if said bike is unregistered, belongs to a rat boy and has some kind of home made modification added to it.
Shopping Centres: Do you see a big sign for a shopping centre with a Kmart, Target or Big W? If so then you’re in the suburbs, bonus points for fast food restaurants both outside and in the food court. If you see a Dominos Pizza you’re in the suburbs. Gourmet? Forget it, meat lovers or Hawaiian is what you’re getting. Furthermore, suburbs have more Bunnings than inner cities, yet the cities bang on about how they have everything. If you can’t get a hammer and snag then can you really say you have everything?
Kids: If you see kids, you’re in the suburbs. And if you can’t see them just listen out for “JAYDEN!! GET IN THE CAR NOW!” There are no children in the city, children in the city are actually dogs (both large and small) owned and treated as if they were in fact children. The suburbs have dogs, but they’re usually not riding in the passenger seat of a convertible BMW.
"The smell of freshly cooked chicken and chips as it wafts out of the takeaway shop mixed in with the burnt rubber aroma of the local Holden Commodores doing burnouts is a suburban classic."
So what might you stumble upon if you’re in the inner city. In this scenario, look out for these signs:
The Inner City
Business People: If you can see a businessman of any type, there’s a good chance you’re in the city. Usually he’s trying to seal the deal on the Peterson account.
Cinemas: Can you see an art house cinema showing weird indie films and the freshest foreign language movies out of Eastern Europe and South America? You’re in the inner city. (if you see a Hoyts with 20 theatres showing blockbusters, Then you’re in the suburbs.)
Transport: Public transport is for the city only (we drive ourselves around in the suburbs like real adults.) The public transport also brings with it what appears to be travelling art galleries of graffiti. In the city you may come across a Banksy piece in a laneway with a political message. In the suburbs, Robbo has written his name and a dick and balls.
As a footnote to transport, I would also say that in the city everyone’s got somewhere they need to be. In the suburbs everyone has somewhere they’re supposed to be but is trying to delay it.
"Public transport is for the city only (we drive ourselves around in the suburbs like real adults.)"
Look, if my hand was forced and I had to suggest where is the better place to live I would say the suburbs. You can be yourself out in the suburbs, inner city living is about always looking over your shoulder - either to see who’s looking at you that you can impress, or to see if a parking inspector is near your car. Out in the suburbs they don't care how long you’re parked, I think they’re just happy your car isn't doing burnouts. But in all seriousness it’s that comfort of being able to be yourself that I admire. It feels good to be yourself and not put on an act, who wants to live their life as an actor? Well Bruce Willis is pretty sick I guess…
Illustrations by Cyrus Bezyan.
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