Could Your Town Convert a Grinch?

This will be my last post of 2012, so I’ll leave you with something merry to chew on (besides Grandma’s fruitcake). The Martin Prosperity Institute at the University of Toronto has come up with a mathematical formula for calculating the cities with the highest potential for Grinch conversion. Specifically, which metropolis is most likely to grow a Grinch’s heart three sizes bigger?

The variables they take into account include density of population (assuming more people means more merriness), number of costume rental stores where Santa suits can be easily procured, number of retail stores for gifts and butchers for roast beast, and number of music-makers. They also measured nighttime illumination levels – because, apparently, lights are required in order to catch the Grinch’s attention. And they even counted the hospitals, assuming the Grinch would need serious medical attention after such an accelerated change to his heart tissue.

The study only looked at American cities, and I guess Whoville isn’t on any U.S. map because even though it’s a sure thing, it didn’t make the top ten. The community that did take the top spot for Grinch-heart-growth potential was Trenton, New Jersey. Other towns that were tapped include New York City, Pittsburgh, New Orleans, and Detroit.

Such a complex research project… I would expect no less from the world’s leading think-tank on the role of sub-national factors in global economic prosperity. But I don’t care what any numbers say. I know my own community scores high on holiday cheer, and I’m looking forward to sipping some of it over the next few days. I hope that you, too, enjoy special time with those you love. All the best.

My friends, we will meet again in January. Joy to the world.

My friends, we will meet again in January. Joy to the world.

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