As Houstonians, we should be proud of being America's 4th largest city without worrying about making it to 3rd place. It's not the competition but the flourishing... we've arisen from the bayou swamp to become an incubator of new ideas for energy, medicine, technology, and space entrepreneurship.
I don't care if we never become as large as Chicago, Los Angeles, or the Boston or the San Francisco area. I love that we continue to strive and to thrive on energy, growth, and exploration.
Houston has its own unique place in the world that isn't "fourth." It's the Capital of Energy. When Houstonians reconnect after weeks apart, we greet each other with the phrase "what are you working on now?" We pride ourselves on the energetic drive to realize our ideas.
In Houston, you're just another energetic citizen until you've executed a big project based on your own original idea. Then you're a civic leader and a hero.