A-Listed

Pittsburgh was featured in many rankings in 2011, from the good to the bad to the utterly confusing.


Illustration by Wayno

If there’s one list every Pittsburgher worth their Terrible Towel knows, it’s the Most Livable Cities list. Not that we live and die by where we rank, but we wait, knowing what a gem we’ve got here — and we hope that the rest of the world will take a look at the list, hunt for the highest-ranked city in America and then say, “PITTSBURGH?!” Just like that — equal parts exclamation and question mixed with a sprinkling of horror as they realize the Steel City beat Honolulu.

Pittsburgh spent 2011 as the Most Livable City in America, an accomplishment we (surprisingly) didn’t celebrate with a parade or two hours’ worth of fireworks. Conversely, we spent 2011 as GQ’s third worst-dressed city, as I mentioned in this column a few months ago. Now it’s time for us to look at some other lists we made in 2011.

Where can we improve this year? Where are we doing just fine? Where are we so perfect that there’s actually no room for improvement? Where, Pittsburgh, are we on the mustache-friendly meter?

Woo!

Pittsburgh was named the top “Large City of the Future” in fDi magazine, while National Geographic Traveler magazine listed us as one of 20 best destinations in the world for 2012. Morocco, Iceland, Costa Brava … Pittsburgh?!  We all need bumper stickers that say simply, “Yes, Pittsburgh!”

Financially we’re the seventh-best city in which to retire, and Forbes calls us the nation’s sixth-most recession-proof city for real estate. If that gets you thinking about moving here, lucky you: We’re the second-best city in America to buy a home (according to Forbes) and the 10th-most affordable place for renters.

If you want to talk jobs, we’re the ninth-best city in which to find one. In addition, we saw the 10th-largest growth in tech jobs, while coming in as the fourth-best city for working mothers. I think that means working moms in the tech industry have hit pay dirt here.

If you’re a single mother, we’re the eighth-best city in America for you — and better yet, you can feel safe here because Pittsburgh is the 11th-most secure city (of large metro areas) in the nation.

Boo!

Forbes has ranked our air as the fifth-dirtiest in the country. Before you panic and start wearing a surgical mask 24/7, take heart that we didn’t make WebMD’s “10 Worst Cities for Asthmatics.”

(wink) We’re the most flirtatious city in the whole country. (eyelash flutter) No. 1! (“accidental” caress of your arm) In my opinion, this is just fine, as long as you aren’t using that ridiculous “Did it hurt when you fell from heaven?” line — unless you’re talking to Sidney Crosby … because it may have really hurt when he fell from heaven.

We’re the eighth-worst city for dating — in spite of which, we’re ranked third in the nation for casual sex. I blame all that gratuitous flirting we’ve been doing. (wink) On the bright side, it doesn’t look like alcohol is a factor because we’re only the 59th-drunkest city in the nation.

We might not be drinking, but we sure are smoking. We’re the 14th-worst city in the nation, smoking-wise.

While you’re smoking and flirting your way to ill-advised casual sex, check your hair because Pittsburgh is the 12th-worst city in the nation for hair. With a quick scan of a Steelers tailgate crowd where mullets and hairspray-cemented Yinzer bangs refuse to die, this isn’t surprising.

Huh?

We’re the third-most mustache-friendly city in America. So give yourselves a pat on the back — we’re apparently not shouting “GO SHAVE!” at random mustachioed passersby.

I’m shocked that we’re only The Sporting News’ sixth “Best Sports City,” losing out to archenemies Dallas and Philadelphia. I blame the Pirates, the black sheep of professional sports here in Pittsburgh.

Finally, Maxim ranked Pittsburgh as the eighth “Best Man City,” but Men’s Health ranked us a dismal 70th “Best City for Men.”  Let’s allow them to punch each other in their perfect six-pack abs to settle who actually got that one right.

I’d say we’re doing pretty well. We have some room for improvement, but we should be proud of what we are and who we are, and we should be proud that we didn’t make the worst teeth list … or the dangerous driving list …  or, most surprisingly, the worst cities for commuting list.

Right now, the Parkway East is crying, “What more do I have to do?!”

 

Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Best Restaurants 2016

Best Restaurants 2016

Which 33 Pittsburgh-area establishments did our independent Restaurant Review Panel include among its top picks this year? Find them here.
Six Pittsburgh Chefs Who Are Outstanding in Their Field

Six Pittsburgh Chefs Who Are Outstanding in Their Field

In addition to awarding Best Restaurant honors this year, our Independent Restaurant Review Panel also voted to recognize six chefs for their contributions to Pittsburgh’s culinary community in 2015.
Citizen Artist: Vanessa German

Citizen Artist: Vanessa German

German blends a collage of community activism and soul-searching artistry.
PittGirl to Wooers: ‘Not Today Satan, Not Today’

PittGirl to Wooers: ‘Not Today Satan, Not Today’

It only takes one person, one jagoff, one childish, attention-seeking, discourteous jerk to send a woo through PNC Park.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

The 412

5 Reasons PyroFest Will Light Up Your Memorial Day Weekend

5 Reasons PyroFest Will Light Up Your Memorial Day Weekend

PyroFest will also include live music, food, a Kids Zone and more.
8 Things You Might Not Know About Kennywood’s Jack Rabbit

8 Things You Might Not Know About Kennywood’s Jack Rabbit

When you compare what it cost to build the coaster in 1920 to what it would cost today, it's obvious Kennywood's owners got their money's worth.
Second New Restaurant Moving into Union Trust Building

Second New Restaurant Moving into Union Trust Building

The upscale seafood eatery is expected to open in late 2016 or early 2017.
Local Filmmaker Celebrates Pittsburgh Food

Local Filmmaker Celebrates Pittsburgh Food

Artist David Bernabo creates a series of films that track various aspects of Pittsburgh's food culture.

Sign Up for the 412 e-Newsletter

 

Our new, daily e-newsletter is curated by the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine and is designed to give you the very best Pittsburgh has to offer -- delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign me up!
* Email
 First Name
 Last Name
  * = Required Field
 
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Best Restaurants 2016

Best Restaurants 2016

Which 33 Pittsburgh-area establishments did our independent Restaurant Review Panel include among its top picks this year? Find them here.
Six Pittsburgh Chefs Who Are Outstanding in Their Field

Six Pittsburgh Chefs Who Are Outstanding in Their Field

In addition to awarding Best Restaurant honors this year, our Independent Restaurant Review Panel also voted to recognize six chefs for their contributions to Pittsburgh’s culinary community in 2015.
Citizen Artist: Vanessa German

Citizen Artist: Vanessa German

German blends a collage of community activism and soul-searching artistry.
PittGirl to Wooers: ‘Not Today Satan, Not Today’

PittGirl to Wooers: ‘Not Today Satan, Not Today’

It only takes one person, one jagoff, one childish, attention-seeking, discourteous jerk to send a woo through PNC Park.
Daytripping: Canonsburg is a City of Antiques

Daytripping: Canonsburg is a City of Antiques

Nearby Canonsburg is a rare find for antiques collectors.
U.S. Open at Oakmont: Will The Town Finally Be a Player?

U.S. Open at Oakmont: Will The Town Finally Be a Player?

The U.S. Open is returning to Oakmont — and unlike previous tournaments, this one could make the community a vital part of the action.
Edit Module

Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

On the Blogs


5 Reasons PyroFest Will Light Up Your Memorial Day Weekend

5 Reasons PyroFest Will Light Up Your Memorial Day Weekend

PyroFest will also include live music, food, a Kids Zone and more.

Comments


Pittsburgh, only cooler
PittGirl: How You Should Grade A Squishy Tongue

PittGirl: How You Should Grade A Squishy Tongue

Kennywood Park opens soon and new this season is the return of the famed whale at the entrance of Noah’s Ark. In the name of science, PittGirl paid an early visit to test the squishiness quotient of the whale's all-important tongue.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Richard DeShantz Plans Two New Restaurants at Salt of the Earth Building

Richard DeShantz Plans Two New Restaurants at Salt of the Earth Building

DeShantz owns three other Pittsburgh restaurants and is about to open a fourth.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
The Best 6 Places to Get a Cup of Tea in Pittsburgh

The Best 6 Places to Get a Cup of Tea in Pittsburgh

The quiet rise of Pittsburgh's tea scene gives us a few favorite gems.

Comments


Highmark Stadium Pub Wants Your Attention

Highmark Stadium Pub Wants Your Attention

The in-house tavern at the Riverhounds' home stadium is now welcoming guests during weekdays. But is it worth a dedicated stop?

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Resurrected Penguins Writing Their Story Their Way

Resurrected Penguins Writing Their Story Their Way

These Penguins have been downright unrecognizable, individually and collectively, on the way to the Stanley Cup Final.

Comments


Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
Flip the Switch: Industrial-Style Lighting Made in Pittsburgh

Flip the Switch: Industrial-Style Lighting Made in Pittsburgh

An electrician by trade, designer Thomas Verscharen creates custom lighting out of repurposed pieces.

Comments


Sean Collier's Popcorn for Dinner

The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
The X-Men Would've Done Better in Wonderland

The X-Men Would've Done Better in Wonderland

Reviews of "X-Men: Apocalypse," "Alice Through the Looking Glass," "A Bigger Splash" and "Love and Friendship."

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Get with the (Wedding) Program

Get with the (Wedding) Program

Have you ever considered making programs for your wedding guests? If not, think again and get creative.

Comments


The latest tips and trends to refresh your home.
A Tiny House that's Big on Energy Savings

A Tiny House that's Big on Energy Savings

Spread out across the city for these upcoming events, including a “Tiny House” exhibit at the Carnegie Science Center displayed by the FIY Network.

Comments


The hottest topics in higher education
Duquesne University to Host Small Business Networking Event

Duquesne University to Host Small Business Networking Event

The event will connect hundreds of small business managers and owners and provide useful information to help them take their enterprises to the next level.

Comments