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February 26, 2020
Big cities seduce. Big cities are multicultural tolerance and broad-minded acceptance of difference. I grew up in Grimsby and Leeds. The former was a miserable, violent midden of casual racism and ingrained sexism. An insular dump; the streets and pubs stank of complacent ignorance and social stagnation. Leeds was better, but still heaving with racism and the sort of smug, phoney regional exceptionalism Yorkshire is renowned for, but enough of an improvement on Grimsby to make me understand what I needed. Big, dirty, throbbing, tolerant, exciting, progressive London. I am a city boy, and damned glad to be so.