Before anyone gets their panties in a bunch about why Mason grinds my gears, allow my to explain myself.
In case the previous sentence isn’t a giveaway, I’m from the ‘burbs outside of Cincinnati. I’ve lived in Ohio my whole 22 years of life and never had a problem with people comprehending what area of southwestern Ohio I’m from. That is, until, I went to college.
You know the drill: meet someone new (primarily this would occur in freshman year), not sure what to talk about, so you’d ask that person where he or she is from. If you guys are from the same area, on-the-spot bond and you’re no longer in an awkward situation. Presto, instant friendship.
After freshman year, you’d expect this exchange to die down and not have to clarify your hometown every time you meet someone new. Well, for me this wasn’t the case. I come from the suburb of Kings Mills, Ohio. Granted, Kings Mills isn’t that big, and people’s mailing addresses vary as well, it is relatively close to Mason.
However, for years I have been plagued with “Where are you from?” To which I reply, “Kings Mills, outside of Cincinnati.” And I almost always get the retort of “You mean Mason?” No fellow Ohioans, I do not mean Mason.
Kings Mills is the original home of famous amusement park, Kings Island. Seeing as how I grew up down the street from KI, I had a season pass for the majority of my life. Time went on, and I became one of the multiple local kids who worked summers at Kings Island. In the midst of me working there, Paramount no longer was the owner of Kings Island and Mason, Ohio acquired the property.
With Mason now owning the land of which Kings Island is a part of, I can understand the confusion from many non-Cincinnati Ohioans as to why they may assume I am from Mason. Eventually, people would just tell me I’m from Mason — which I most certainly am not — and I would tell people my hometown was Kings Island just so they would get the gist that I do not live in Mason.
Nothing against my friendly neighbors in the city of Mason; Mason is a very large suburban area and because I am so close, many of the places I go on a daily basis are in Mason. But to explain to people that I am not from there, nor did I attend William Mason High School, gets annoying after having to clarify my hometown for about four years.
Eventually, I would get many smart asses who would tell me I can’t be from Kings Island as it’s an amusement park. (My favorite response was “Do you live on The Beast?”) Lo and behold, again I’d have to elaborate I’m from Kings Mills, but because it is so close to Mason and Kings Mills is a smaller area, I just say I’m from Kings Island. Easier answer.
I guess I created my own problem as to why Mason grinds my gears. To get around the fact people would assume I’m from Mason, I had an answer that I thought people would understand I’m not from Mason. Rather, it caused a lot more grief and explaining on my part of where I’m really from. Oh well.
In the end, it’s not the city of Mason that grinds my gears; it’s the people I interact with who try to correct me and assume I’m wrong. Remember guys, we all know what happens when you assume something.
[NOTE: Essentially this post can be renamed to “How many times can Caroline say ‘Mason’ in one post.”]