East coast, beast coast: Going back to where it all started


Esha Gohil

The Gothic revivalist spires of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan contrasts with its surrounding skyscrapers.

by Esha Gohil, Humans of Harker Co-Editor-In-Chief

What makes America, America? Is it the rich natural diversity, from the glorious gorges of the Grand Canyon to the flourishing floods of the Niagara Falls? Perhaps it’s the melting pot of communities that integrate to form an intricately interwoven quilt of cultures, cuisine and creations? And maybe still, America could be defined by its assorted architecture and artistry, buildings and brushstrokes that pay homage to our, quite literally, colorful past. All in all, America is unparagoned.

Though this simple characterization applies to each and every one of our 50 nifty states, one cluster of 14 stands out to epitomize this American ideal: the place that started it all, the East Coast. 

Simply put, the East Coast is everything the West Coast wishes it was, the cool big brother that the latter can never live up to. Sure, I could be a typical Harker kid and bring up the “US News Best National University Rankings,” but that’d just be unfair. I mean Massachusetts alone beats the entirety of the West Coast. Instead, let me point you to the World Population Review’s “Best States for Education.” The East Coast states make up a whopping 70% of the top 10 states with the best school systems list. Not a single state on the western seaboard makes the cut. But, of course, the East Coast isn’t all work and no play.

Truly, whoever said “less is more” was kidding themselves. With 11 more states, the East Coast trumps its western counterpart by sheer quantity alone, satisfying pretty much any travel craving you may long for. Ready for a wild spring break after a long semester? Head down to Key West or Daytona Beach in Florida. Trying to find a mecca of music? Take a trip to good ol’ New York, New York, where you can immerse yourself in every style from reggaeton to showtunes. And, if such scenes are a little too fast paced for your taste, don’t fret. You could always go fishing in the cool waters of Cape Cod, Maine, or live out your best “Gilmore Girls” dreams as you observe the changing leaves and small town festivals of a Connecticut fall.

Speaking of fall, we can’t ignore the East Coast’s beautifully distinct seasons and the absolutely iconic fashion choices that come with them. Having lived in California for my entire life, I can say with conviction that our perpetual summertime is overrated. As I always say, too cold is better than too hot (but that’s an opinion for another time). There’s no better feeling than bundling on some chunky boots and a thick jacket, putting in directions to the nearest ice skating rink and stepping out from the heater into the brisk, snowy winter air as Nat King Cole croons in your ear tales of chestnuts and Jack Frost. On the West Coast, the only thing nipping at your nose is wildfire smoke.

So, really, West Coast, best coast? All I can say to that unoriginal and frankly untrue rhyme is East Coast, beast coast.