The author's posts are entirely his or her own and may not always reflect the views of Movoto.
1. Waterbury is "Jersey Shore"--without the, ya know, shore
Source: Courtesy of MTV
Waterbury is the most heavily populated Italian-American city in Connecticut today with more than 18 percent of its population claiming Italian heritage. It is definitely not unusual to see the hair gel, white tees, and gold crosses, or Snooki's bouffant hairstyle while you walk around Waterbury. We could argue about this stereotype all day, but the fact remains: There are a lot of Italian-Americans in Waterbury. Whether or not they're all Snooki-look-alikes is still up for debate.
2. At least half the people you know went to UConn and are proud of it
Source: Flickr user Dannel Malloy
This is just true. Go Huskies.
3. Everyone knows what blue laws are, but wish they didn't
If you're from Waterbury (or any other city in Connecticut, for that matter) you've probably made the hour drive to reach the border of Massachusetts to buy alcohol on a Sunday (Super Bowl Sunday problems, anyone?). The laws have recently changed, but most places are still closed on Sundays. So, off to "Mass" we go.
4. Everyone in Waterbury is Catholic
Source: Flickr user nick see
Ok not everyone, but a significant percentage of Waterbury is Catholic. There are approximately 40,000 Catholics in Waterbury (about 35% of the population). Which explains the plethora of Catholic schools (St. Mary's, St. Francis Xavier, Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Holy Cross High School, and more) as well as the infamous gothic-style cathedral, St. Anne's, which is a landmark of Waterbury.
5. Driving here is not for the faint of heart
No one likes to admit it, but it's pretty true. Because we're right between Massachusetts and New York, we are a combination of the two stereotypical drivers from each state: Imagine a high speed New York City taxi driver and a Massachusetts-slowpoke all rolled up into one, and that's what you'll get in Waterbury.
6. So, naturally, everyone has deer problems
About 49 deer are killed per day on Connecticut roads (18,000 deer per year) and about $28 million is spent annually on motor vehicle repairs for deer-related accidents. Pretty much all of I-84 is littered with dead deer, even by cities like Waterbury. The only explanation is that they appear out of thin air just to get hit by your car on I-84. And then you'll be like, "What. Just. Happened?"
7. You've definitely said the following: "I don't understand why people call Connecticut the richest state--I don't have any money"
The stereotype of the Connecticut, cookie-cutter family living in their mansions in the suburbs holding margaritas while floating around on giant pool floats is only half true. Yes, Connecticut is the wealthiest state in the country and, yes, it is super-expensive to live here (particularly in the suburbs). But it's important to note that certainly not everyone is rolling in cash. Connecticut has vast economic diversity with many of its residents living below the poverty line, particularly in the big cities. The stark contrast between the haves and have-nots is very obvious in all Connecticut cities, and Waterbury is no exception.
8. Everyone in waterbury says they're from "just outside New York"
If you're from Waterbury, you will say this. Many times. Over and over. Forever. And not just if you're from Waterbury, really, but pretty much if you're just from anywhere in Connecticut. How else will anyone know where you're from if you can't claim that you're from NYC?
9. Your neighborhood is your family
Waterbury is a city of neighborhoods, and each one has its own history. With so much diversity in the city, the neighborhoods reflect the heritages of different ethnic communities. Depending on where you are, the clusters of shops, restaurants, grocery stores, bodegas, bakeries, etc. will definitely reflect your community's majority heritage. While everyone shares the downtown, each community is really its own little borough.
10. Everyone--everywhere--knows each other's business
When two strangers meet from Connecticut, they probably know at least a handful of the same people. This is true of Waterbury, and many other Connecticut towns and cities. Even the largest cities are still small-town enough so that you know everyone's business and everyone knows yours. But this can be really nice--you feel like you're in a tight-knit community wherever you go. At the end of the day, all that gossip is really just because everyone and their mother loves you like family.
Featured Image Source: Flickr user Nick See