Yay I have experienced now the place up north that I'd never been to but that has produced lots of people that I know. In Minneapolis but leaving early tomorrow morning. Went to Dinkytown by the University of Minnesota and then checked out Uptown, looking through Cheapo records. Wanted to check out Electric Fetus too, but not enough time. Anyways, what I've discovered is shocking: Minneapolis is almost as hip as Seattle, and pretty much as sophisticated. We're more cutting edge in certain ways it seems, like having Thai restaurants on every block, but Minneapolis holds its own. While the two cities aren't quite comparable, it seems that the University of Minnesota kicks the University of Washington's ass academically. UW is at best a good regional school, while UM is a major research university. There may be lots of readers in Seattle, but from certain stores I went to it looks like some folks in Minneapolis read deeper than folks in Seattle.
I'm not trashing Seattle, I'm just suggesting that it doesn't walk on water as some godlike city on a hill in each and every aspect--and that other cities have things going for them as well.