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This write-up is quite subjective, because the only thing that would make a write-up by me on my hometown objective would be looking up and copying statistics. Oh well.

I live in Oakland, in Bergen County, New Jersey. It is not a very fun town. Writing in 2000 AD, the arcade and second-run movie theatre of my youth have closed, years ago, and the shopping center they were in has been completely consumed by the Shop-Rite. There were at least two different comic book shops in Oakland during my life, as well as a neat little paper role-playing game and sci-fi book store called "Off-World Booksellers". They all closed, but I've still got Off-World's business card in my wallet.

There are a few things in Oakland that are nice to have, though. The town's not completely dead. We've got a pretty well-stocked Blockbuster Video, although the ones in Fair Lawn and Teaneck are better for old movies, especially classic horror, kung-fu, and Hong Kong gunfight movies. For fast food, there's a Chinese restaurant, four pizzerias (Junior's is my favorite), a KFC, and a Burger King. I don't know of any especially good non-fast food, though. I also like having a dollar store in Oakland, becuase it's a good place to find bootleg toy robots. The 35 to 40 mile per hourspeed limit on most streets is also nice, because it's reasonable to drive that fast safely on mostly-empty streets.

Oakland isn't a very fun town, but it could be worse. For instance, Pompton Lakes, which is just over the county line from Oakland in Passaic County, has nothing in it but a few pizza places, and the speed limit there is 20 MPH, and the police enforce it strictly. Oakland is also better than Fair Lawn in many ways, because of Fair Lawn's hellish traffic patterns.

So, it's a small, boring town, but it's not that bad. The worst thing about Oakland is that it might turn into another Franklin Lakes soon - a couple of years ago they flattened a huge expanse of forest by the river to build a few huge, expensive houses and a lot of small, less expensive houses with a few feet between them and front lawns the size of a postage stamp.

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