Following up on last week’s post on the “State By State” essay collection, published in 2009, I thought a summary of the addendum might be of interest to Rhody readers, wherein each state is ranked in a variety of categories.
Rhode Island ranks:
43rd in population.
42nd in population increase.
12th in foreign-born population.
29th in population born elsewhere in the U.S.
45th in birthrate.
9th in median age. All six New England states were in the top 10, including Maine (1), Vermont (2), New Hampshire (7), Connecticut (8) and Massachusetts (10).
18th in gross state product per capita.
34th in bankruptcy filing rate at 28 percent. (Tennessee came in first at a whopping 109.9 percent.)
21st in mean travel time to work.
47th in unemployment rate. (From the Bureau of Labor Statistics in Feb. 2008. We all know what happened later that year, when the economy collapsed. Since then, Rhody’s unemployment rate has nearly doubled and ranks consistently in the top five.)
43rd in military recruitment rate.
18th in percentage of population claiming no religion.
9th in public education expenditure per pupil.
32nd in voter participation rate.
42nd in oil consumption per capita.
43rd in gasoline consumption per capita.
44th in violent crime rate.
41st in incarceration rate.
35th in breastfeeding rate.
43rd in population without health insurance.
34th in toothlessness rate at 17.9 percent. (West Virginia is first at 40.5 percent.)
44th in obesity rate.
5th in alcohol consumption. (Only Wisconsin, North Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa drink more.)
26th in cigarette consumption.
43rd in divorce rate.
47th in suicide rate.
47th in highest monthly temperature.
27th in lowest monthly temperature.
Also, Rhode Island is one of seven states with no roller coaster.
Most importantly, Rhode Island was at the top of the list in one category, ranking first in Table 17, “Classic Movie Theaters and Drive-Ins Per Capita,” with a score of 143.1. (Source: Cinema Treasures.)
What does this mean? We drink a lot, but typically aren’t violent or criminal in nature. We stay married. We don’t tend to jump off bridges. We’re thinner than the average Americans. We don’t severely deplete energy resources. We spend more than most on education. We used to have jobs. There aren’t that many of us, all things considered, but those of us who are from here tend to stay here. We miss the Cyclone, the Corkscrew and the Flume*, and we still like to watch movies in places that have a little character.
Leading to this week’s question: What’s your favorite old movie house in Rhode Island?
[Blogger’s note: Starting next week, Half Shell will be burrowing in the sands of Lambert’s Cove, enjoying a Monday-to-Monday beach rental on the Vineyard, which means…look for our return on Tuesday, Aug. 23, when we’ll be rocking some serious surfer tan and clam belly. Until then…]
*Technically, a log ride, not a roller coaster, but it belongs in the discussion of lamented amusement park rides.