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Louisville named the third unhappiest city in America

Here’s some news that won’t be surprising to us: in a recent study, Louisville was named the third unhappiest city in America. The US National Bureau of Economic Research surveyed people who live in cities with a population of more than 1 million as of 2010 about their satisfaction with life, and Louisville came in third, behind New York and Pittsburgh. Here’s the top ten:

1. New York, NY
2. Pittsburgh, PA
3. Louisville, KY
4. Milwaukee, WI
5. Detroit, MI
6. Indianapolis, IN
7. St. Louis, MO
8. Las Vegas, NV
9. Buffalo, NY
10. Philadelphia, PA

Finally, proof that it’s depressing living in Calipari’s shadow. Maybe that explains all the Crown Royal.


Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

90 Comments for Louisville named the third unhappiest city in America

  1. Anyway
    1:35 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Well, considering 50% of the people living in Louisville are UK fans, I fail to see the humor.
    Oh, and the crown royal thing is so played out it ain’t funny. And I’m a UK fan!!!

    • bluemanchew
      2:54 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      First time I’ve seen a lewisville fan admit to 50% of jeff. County being uk fans. But sadly all things lewisville are not related to ul. When someone asks me about lewisville I think of a run down dixie hwy where all the good retailers are moving to the east or south. I think of a downtown where the city pays businesses to come there and then sadly they close down. Anything west of bardstown rd. Is considered a bad part of town until you get to the southern end. Sorry ul fan but its the truth.

  2. itzbadandy
    1:35 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    How is Detroit not #1 followed by Flint? Those places are about the worst places on earth!

    • SemiPro Stuff
      1:42 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Flint started going downhill after the NBA rejected the Tropics!

    • L1C6
      1:48 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Either you didn’t read the part that says “cities with a population of more than 1 million” or you have no idea how big Detroit and Flint are.

    • L1C6
      1:50 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I’ll give ya that Detroit is toeing the line, but Flint…not even close to 1 mil

    • Sister Cities
      2:12 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I think Louisville and Detroit have similar populations in the 700,000 range. I’m not sure where 1,000,000 came from.

    • Sister Cities
      2:15 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Addendum: I see where Louisville’s metro population is over 1,000,000 but it is completely dwarfed by Detroit’s metro pop of over 3,000,000.

    • bluemanchew
      2:56 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      No sense in betting a dead horse. Is my guess

    • ukjaybrat
      7:33 am July 25, 2014 Permalink

      since louisville and jefferson county officially merged, louisville counts its metro areas as a part of its city population. it was a shady move that boosted Louisville’s numbers for funding and tourism.

  3. UKFan
    1:46 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Strong correlation with alcoholism, dirty river water, and pollution problems the river town has.

  4. Facts
    1:48 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Way to keep feeding the stereotype for outside UK fans and other fan bases to keep assuming that everyone that lives in Louisville is a UL fan. Matt constantly tries to dispel this myth on his show but yet his writers of his site constantly fuel this fire by bashing the “city” every chance it gets. Not everything in this city has to do with UL, not even close. Stick to bashing the university but not the city in general. This city is a state of KENTUCKY city, it is apart of the state of Kentucky. Ton of UK fans live here and ton of UK alumni work here. You are making the disconnect worse between the people in the city of Louisville and the rest of the residents worse. And yes it goes both ways and the people in the city of Louisville need to do their part to, to bridge this disconnect but you aren’t helping matters either. I for one am tired of people from both sides disowning the other, we are all one state and need to act like it.

    • Anyway
      1:50 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink


    • L1C6
      1:52 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I must’ve missed the part where Matt wrote the linked article and actually did the study himself. Yeah, KSR didn’t have to make it a post, but they aren’t the ones who did the study. Sounds like you are a member of the unhappy Louisville crowd.

    • L1C6
      1:54 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Also, do you really think many people from other fan bases read this site? It’s mainly UK and UL fans, and a couple of other people from other schools in the area, but come on…it isn’t like the majority of other fan bases read KSR.

    • hell cat
      2:10 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      L1C6 – reading comprehension not your strong suit, eth? ‘Facts’ wasn’t complaining about the study, but about KSR’s constant bashing of all things Louisville.

    • Cal's Cats
      2:26 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      If you don’t like the constant (and deserved) UL bashing, then…DON’T. COME. TO. THIS. SITE!!!!!

    • DH
      2:33 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      How many ways does it have to be explained before you understand, Cal’s Cats? NOT the UL bashing, the City of Louisville bashing. If you have no reading comprehension, then… DON’T. TRY. TO. COMMENT!!!!

    • L1C6
      3:15 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Yeah ‘hell cat’ I’m pretty good at reading comprehension, you seem to be misunderstanding my post. He is complaining about KSR bashing Louisville, which insinuates that this post is bashing Louisville. However, this post is NOT bashing Louisville, but simply pointing out that an outside study says people in Louisville are unhappy. How is that bashing Louisville? It’s pointing out that the people of Louisville aren’t happy, but it is not bashing the city. Bashing this city would be posting an article that says “Louisville is one of the worst cities in America.” Get it, dummy?

  5. LouisvilleCatFan
    1:49 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    While I am all about ribbing U of L, the mindset that some people have to criticize Louisville as a city is getting old. Louisville is the Commonwealth’s economic engine. Those that root against progress for the Commonwealth’s largest city or taker jabs at its residents (many of which are UK fans and/or graduates) simply because they cheer for UK must fail to appreciate that as the City of Louisville progresses, so does the rest of the Commonwealth. Louisville’s progress benefits the rest of the Commonwealth, it does not come at its expense.

    • Reality
      2:05 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I take a lot of jabs at the “University” of Louisville, but that’s because it’s mostly awful. Louisville as a city is OK even if it is home to most of the UL(ol) fans in the world.

    • Hartline
      3:16 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Please go away, its satire humor. Once you accept that this isn’t a news site then you can live more happily in your life.

  6. Facts
    1:50 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    I especially don’t need someone who isn’t even a Kentuckian bashing my city and state.

    • Reality
      2:06 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Mrs TT is from Danville, even if she lives in Nashville now she’s still a Kentuckian

    • bluemanchew
      3:06 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      She didn’t do the study she just rported the findings. If you have a problem with the results do something about it. Like everytime I’m travelling threw the city and I stop for gas I see garbage everywhere. And there’s always some creepy dude that comes up to me with the I live 40 miles away ran out of gas gimmie some money story. Maybe if metro police would worry about locking up criminals instead of collecting money from speeding tickets on the interstate and east end. P.s. I never see a cop in the western part of the county.

  7. Anyway
    1:51 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    It’s kinda like biting the hand that feeds you!

  8. Shirley Temple
    1:53 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    If the Crown Royal reference is still funny..
    We’ve lost.

    • Anyway
      2:01 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink


  9. L1C6
    1:57 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Man, people are salty here. You guys are taking this a little too seriously. Why so serious? Nobody is rooting against the city’s progress. We’re just having a little laugh at the study that says people who live in louisville aren’t happy. You guys sound pretty unhappy, so I assume you live in Louisville!

    • Anyway
      2:00 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Nah, some of us are just tired of people beating a dead horse.

    • L1C6
      2:03 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      So why read the article? If you see a headline that is a ‘dead horse’ that you are tired on, move along.

    • Anyway
      2:05 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I didn’t read the article. I seen the headline and who wrote it and that’s all it took.

    • Facts
      2:06 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      L1C6″ you seem to be salting about people defending the city of Louisville considering this is your 5th comment about it.

    • Cozmo
      2:19 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      These pretzels are making me thirsty!!!

    • Shirley Temple
      2:19 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I live in southern Kentucky but have homes in Lexington and Louisville.. If it wasn’t for all things UK related… I would take Louisville hands down every single time. I do not live in either city full time.. However I find the dining, entertainment and shopping better in Louisville ..
      Not very important but just my opinion.

    • L1C6
      3:18 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Facts, I’m not salty I’m just having a good time laughing at you cry babies. My job is boring, this is good entertainment. You keep crying all over this post, “Facts” and it’s awesome!

    • Facts
      3:27 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      “L1C6” I’ll show you a grown up.

    • L1C6
      3:30 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      a grown up what? a grown up d bag? No thanks. I’ll pass on whatever you are referring to.

  10. L1C6
    2:03 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink


  11. LouisvilleCatFan
    2:14 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    I think “Anyway” and I are expressing the same sentiment.

    I understand it’s a slow time in sports-related news. While the survey itself does not take a jab at Louisville, posting it on this site is done simply to create a forum to perpetuate animosity towards the City as a whole. Its pretty juvenile and gets old after a while. Perhaps I am just getting old, but I would hope we could evolve as a fan base and differentiate between the way KY fans feel about U of L sports and the City as a whole.

    I get the impression that way too many people who come to this site do not like Louisville simply because they cheer for UK. Posts like this simply add fuel to an antiquated, juvenile, and overly simplistic perception of an entire city.

    I’m not saying people must like Louisville as a City. Certainly, Louisville has its shortcomings, and there are probably legitimate reasons people don’t like the city. Some like city life, some don’t. But to simply hate a city because one doesn’t like their university’s sports program is ridiculous.

    • bluemanchew
      3:14 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I don’t like the city. Its corrupt, its educational system is to worried about other things beside educating, unless you are in the eastern half it smells, it has nothing to do with the university. I just don’t like that city.

  12. sports related?
    2:14 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    MTT you must be unhappy yourself to feel the need to try and bash a city you don’t live in versus focusing on the cool things in the city you live in. I try to find your articles amusing, but they aren’t. Stick to sports related information…

    • bluemanchew
      3:16 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      She didn’t do the study

    • Moose
      3:21 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      bashing the city? lol how is this bashing the city? its talking about the people in the city, but not bashing the city. Sounds like you need someone to change your diaper.

  13. Commando
    2:16 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    If we were to get rid of the Card fans, Louisville would be a pretty nice place to live. I’m being serious. As it stands though, Rubbertown and essentially everyone who lives west of I-65 really stink up the place. And yes, I know, there are a few decent people who live on that side of the city.

    • bluemanchew
      3:15 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      No it wouldn’t. I could not live there regardless of the university.

    • DH
      4:01 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I’m curious, blueman.. Where do you live that is so much better than Louisville?

    • bluemanchew
      5:49 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I’m a farmer(as stated before) I live in a town with less than 1500 my nearest neighbor is half a mile away. I don’t like cities. I do visit for business reasons Lewisville, nashville, lexington, bardstown and etown often. I was once a resident of jeff. County but left shortly after the merger.

  14. beavis
    2:20 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    If Mrs T T lives in Nashville and has to drive in that city,,,,well lets just say I don’t know how Nashville did not make the list. Next to Philly, the most God awful drivers and highway system I have seen.

    • Mrs. Tyler Thompson
      2:24 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Actually, Nashville was ranked the eighth happiest city in that study. But yes, the traffic sucks. Working from home does not.

    • Reality
      2:27 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Beavis has apparently never been to Ohio

    • beavis
      2:31 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Yep,,,,Ole Beavis has been in Ohio. Evidently you have not been in Nashville at rush hour. The amusement never ends.

      2:35 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Shoot if my town had TT here we would be on the top 10 happy list too

    • Butthead
      3:22 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      perhaps some people know how to navigate around the rush hour traffic, genius.

  15. Drew
    2:22 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    I believe this was all in good fun. I’m okay with that because stuff like “Lessington” and what not is played out by Louisville people. Also the notion that Louisville is the best thing since sliced bread and sex is played out. It’s a good city. Kentucky is a good state. Lexington is good too.

    While I’m all for defending Lexington to those who put it down (and I think Louisville people should too) we probably need to bond together more, in terms of respecting each other. The growth of Louisville will help but so will the growth of any city in Kentucky. Lexington is next on that list.

    Also, it’s apparent that many rubes on here didn’t read the article. The study was also showcasing how people will stay in a city despite being unhappy for the trade off of higher wages or lower cost of living ( both of which Louisville has).

    Though, if there’s one thing I would love Louisville people to accept from this article that being ranked “the new Portland” by Travel Planet or Lard Muncher XL magazine dot com ranking it the #1 best city for ice cream or whatever. Please stop taking these opinion polls and rankings as gospel. They are purely opinion.

    • Reality
      2:28 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Sliced bread and sex… that’s about to become a thing in some of the seedier corners of the web.

    • bluemanchew
      3:19 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      UK is not just a lexington university it is the states university. You can take classes and not be in lexington.

  16. Francis's Everywhere
    2:23 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Good grief lighten up people. Fans of rival universities lob insults at the respective towns. It happens nationwide and carries little to no significance. It’s just a friggin’ joke. Plenty of panty ironing needs to be going down this afternoon. Yeesh.

  17. joey b
    2:24 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    As a lifelong Louisvillian and a lifelong UK fan, I echo all the rational comments that question the utility of the city bashing posts. Intellectually, the connection between city and college in general is always tenuous. Do Georgia fans uniformly hate Atlanta? Do most KU fans live in Lawrence? Which part of LA do you burn down to rid yourself of Southern Cal fandom?

    Perhaps most damning, this faulty line of reasoning fits into the lumping of other people into other territories that fuels fascist racism. Perhaps we need a ghetto for UofL fans in each of Kentucky’s hamlets so you’ll know precisely where to launch your grenades?

    • Plain Truth
      5:15 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      You got all that from a study that says Louisville is an unhappy city????

  18. joey b
    2:25 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Francis, if you aren’t in Louisville, the attack wasn’t aimed at you.

    • Francis's Everywhere
      2:50 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      We just got a reference to “fascist racism” but probably people don’t need to lighten up.

    2:29 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    People from Louisville tend to talk there own town up way more than they should. Then they get butthurt when the truth comes out lol. Maybe yall would be happy if you got off your high horse and drop the ego.

  20. Blue Jesus
    2:30 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Surprised NYC is #1. I’ve never lived there but that’s certainly not the impression I got of it.

    Thought DC would be on there, too.

  21. James K
    2:37 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    As a young single person I could see NYC wearing on you. I personally love living in Louisville. People act like we are on enemy turf — not really. We own the entire state. There are a TON of UK fans here.

    • sports related?
      2:47 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      -Bats are better than the Legends
      -Churchill is bigger than Keeneland, and hosts the Derby
      -Traffic is not nearly as bad as Lexington
      -The night life in Louisville is much more broad than Lexington
      -The YUM Center is an incredible venue, even though it plays host to the dirty birds
      -Thunder over Louisville is the nations largest firework show
      -You can gamble at the boat (even though it’s attached to that crap state up north)

      Nothing against Lex Vegas, but Louisville is a cool place.

      2:54 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Regarding your Churchill and Keeneland comparison, bigger does not mean better or nicer, which Keeneland definitely is.

    • Moose
      3:28 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      yeah Keeneland is much better and nicer than Churchill. I give ya the Derby is a nice event, but that doesn’t make Churchill nicer, it just makes it popular for a day.

      Who gives a crap about minor league baseball and fireworks?

      Louisville is nice in some parts, Lexington is nice in some parts. Louisville is bad in some parts, Lexington is bad in some parts. Everything is a matter of personal preference. Some people don’t care about night life and gambling.

  22. UKBlue1!
    2:56 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Life long UK fan, grad and I live in Louisville. It is a great place to live for the most part except for certain area’s. The city brings in a little less than half the states tax dollars. However, only about 35 cents for every dollar collected in Jefferson County and surrounding counties stay here. When I see this type of crap written on this site I want to puke. Hate UofL but not this area. We are a huge part of Kentucky and this where the largest alumni base for UK is located in the Commonwealth.

    • UKfan
      4:09 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I’m guessing that your stats are the Louisville Metropolitan area statistics and not the city of Louisville statistics. Please clarify so that readers understand the difference. (In other words, no way that the city of Louisville brings in half the states revenue).

    • UKBlue1!
      4:27 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Jefferson, Bullitt, Shelby, Spence, Hardin and Oldham counties all have people who work in Louisville. I don’t have exact number in front of me but it was something in the mid 40 percent range in the 2010 census.

    • UKfan
      5:15 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      I would be interested in seeing where those numbers are coming from. Roughly 73% of Kentucky’s tax revenue comes from either individual income tax or sales tax receipts.. Approx. 610,000 people live in the actual city of Louisville (not the Metropolitian City-County or Greater Metropolitan) area. Roughly, 4.2 million live in the entire state…making Louisville roughly 14.5% of the entire state population. Your numbers say that the city of Louisville generates roughly half the states revenue (roughly $9 billion per yr). That means that the average Louisville resident/business generates $14.754 in tax revenue per year. Bullshit. I think someone is doing some creativity accounting or double/triple accounting. Post the link of where you are getting your statistics.

  23. Ray O'Sunshine
    3:12 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    I knew that from the get go; that’s why I spent 18 years trying to get out. Not sure why you all post that photo of Rick and the Card getting their butts handed to them by Providence. He let that happen. And, after that, UofL got it together and won the NCAA. If NYC is the unhappy Big Apple, then Louisville is the unhappy little brother. Pitts burgh is somewhere in between.

    • Sudden Downpour
      4:07 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      They probably post that picture because it’s actually from the Cardinals’ first round loss to Morehead State in 2011. A year the Cards most definitely didn’t win the tournament.

  24. Mxyzptlk
    3:13 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Makes sense that NYC is at the top of the list. That’s the saddest piss-hole on the planet.

  25. J in Orlando
    3:24 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    With 40% of the population (yes, it’s 40%) being UL fans who have to constantly come up with justification for being the most corrupted University/Athletic Dept in the nation, this result is not surprising. I mean, they still have to invent excuses for not firing Pitino, re-hiring Bobby Petrino until a better offer comes along, and supporting a school that is bilking them out of millions for an arena. 3rd place is a conservative estimate.

  26. goukgo
    3:28 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    According to Google, Louisville has less than 300,000 people not 1 million

  27. Stat Man
    3:41 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    The only way to say that Louisville has 1 million or more people is to include the entire metropolitan statistical area (MSA). That MSA includes several counties in Indiana as well as Jefferson, Bullitt, Shelby and Oldham counties in Kentucky. Jefferson county which contains all of metro Louisville only has a population of about 650,000.

  28. Knoxville
    3:55 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Louisville is the butthole of America

    • Juanny Jnoxveel
      5:41 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      So Knoxville is the shit?

  29. Cardz4Lyfe
    4:13 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Louisville invented happiness in 1826, so this report is invalid.

    • You Owe Me a Round
      4:38 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      But the charring process was recommended by a Lexington grocer so put that in your pipe and smoke it. Now for the history of burley…

  30. Freethrow
    4:29 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    How can LA not be in the top 5 cities. I lived there for over a year and other than the weather it sucks big time in almost every other category you could have for a city. Someone above mentioned “certain areas”, IMO, there are only a “few” certain areas you would want to live out there and most are way out of a normal persons income range. The smog, everything is desert except where watered a bunch, a wrong turn from almost any location will guide you right into some very risky neighborhood. The weirdo’s and the gang bangers and the trafficcccccccccccccccccccc. I Hate it there. Visit again sometime, maybe and that is a small maybe. Live there again, no freaking way.

    • Rick Pitino
      5:42 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

      Thanks Denny Crum.

  31. St Ronnie was a moron
    5:31 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Detroit’s new City motto:
    It could be worse you could live in Louisville

  32. matt
    6:41 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Studies are only as good as the people taking them, I didn’t take the survey. Also Matt Jones lives in Louisville, UK fans love louisville, best city in Kentucky by far.

  33. GFY
    6:54 pm July 23, 2014 Permalink

    Louisville just had Forecastle and it was one of the best weekends of my life. Unbelievable food, bourbon, and beer scene. Nothing in the state can touch it.

  34. This blog was… how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally I have found
    something that helped me. Thanks!

  35. James
    9:39 pm July 24, 2014 Permalink

    I can believe it. I’m a transplant from a more southern state to Louisville for work. I can definitely see why and understand why people are so unhappy. The taxes are outrageous, the traffic is terrible, I actually have allergies now due to the pollution in the Ohio River Valley since everything settles here. Did I mention how terrible the traffic is? Definitely a big mistake to move here. Currently i’m working on fixing loose ends and setting myself to move back to my home town back south. Man it’s just too much here. Too many people, taxes are insane compared to other states. Too many people. Too many wrecks. The seasons are too crazy ( I made it through the winter last year). BIG BIG mistake. If you love Kentucky i’m not trying to take anything from you i’m just not liking this state too much. I’ll be on my way.

  36. schmowzow
    1:17 pm July 25, 2014 Permalink

    You do realize why Louisville is unhappy right? It’s because it’s the only real city and because we have to share a state with the most hated fanbase in the country.