When I first started reading this article in Vogue magazine, written by expat Kirby Marzec, I thought to myself, “Uh-oh… sounds like a chapter straight out of Buffalo ’66.” As I delved in to the article, I was getting prepared to defend Buffalo on a number of fronts. But suddenly, and unexpectedly, the tone changed. It went from a very dismal and unforgiving slant, to a wistful longing to get to know her hometown once again. Marzec spent most of her time in Buffalo looking to get out. And after a decade of being away, she has seen her city grow up from afar.
“I’ve since learned in the decade that I’ve spent away that it’s better to love something—or someone—for exactly what it is, instead of wishing it were something else.”
It’s funny. I’ve heard similar scenarios time and time again over the years. People would tell me that they never even gave Buffalo a chance – all they wanted to do was “get away”. Others stuck it out and waited for Buffalo to turn a corner, which it finally did. Still others decided to dedicate themselves to the city that they always loved, early on.
Buffalo’s not for everybody. You have to like the four seasons, for one. Sports? There’s still hope. Just ask Philadelphia. As for the arts and culture, it’s always been here – it was the glue that held everything together when Buffalo was struggling. The food… the diversity… the opportunity… it’s all getting better. Have we arrived yet? No. Are we still on the runway? No. We’ve left the tarmac, and are heading for the skies… and we’ve got a lot of passengers onboard who are excited to see where we’re heading next, Marzec being one of them.