Do you ever get in a conversation with someone and, once they learn you’re from Illinois, they ask you the same predictable/stereotypical questions? Yeah, we totally get that. Here are 11 of the most common/annoying questions people ask.
1. So you're from Chicago?
Actually, no. Chicago is a huge city and many people live here at some point of their lives. But think about how small Chicago is compared to the rest of the state. It is the minority, contrary to what people in Chicago like to think.
2. Do you only eat deep dish pizza there?
No, you're thinking of the fact that we are famous for Chicago-style pizza, which is deep dish. But we also have a great thin crust style that many people go for over the deep dish. And I take it you mean deep dish over other forms of pizza, because if all I ate was deep dish pizza, my lifespan would be 18 years.
3. Do you root for the Cubs or the White Sox?
So that question actually leaves out a huge portion of the state that roots for the (choking as I write this) St. Louis Cardinals. People in Chicago sure are divided about whether they are Cubs or Sox fans, but the rest of the state bleeds red (that was a double entendre, BTW).
4. Have you ever been to the "Home Alone" house?
Actually, I totally have, and it's awesome to visit around the holidays.
5. Why do you guys get so stoked about Abraham Lincoln?
Uhhh, because arguably Abraham Lincoln was the best president ever. Think about all he did in his short tenure as president. While he wasn't born here, he has huge ties to Illinois and we think of him as our native son.
6. Is it really windy there?
So, yes, Chicago is called the Windy City. And because it is situated on the shores of Lake Michigan, there is wind. But that's actually not the reason behind the nickname. It was a reference to politicians and speakers in Illinois back in the day who were full of hot air. Hey, I guess the term sticks now, too!
7. Isn't Illinois really flat?
Yeah, parts of it are really flat, like in this picture. You can see for miles. It's gorgeous. BUT if you hold this opinion, you probably haven't driven down south, where there are tons of hills, cliffs, and beautiful rock formations.
8. Why do you get mad if people put ketchup on a hot dog?
If you want to put ketchup on a hot dog, no one will beat you up. But that's not true to the Chicago style hot dog, which calls for mustard. You do get the tomato taste from--get this--actual tomatoes.
9. Doesn't it get really cold there?
Yikes. Yeah, it definitely does. Winters can be harsh, and the combination of snow and traffic can cause a lot of stress on people. But we manage.
10. Why are you guys such hot heads about sports?
Until I went to Solider Field, I never heard booing that loud. Illinois sports fans are passionate, and if things aren't going right, they will try to notify management (although, guys, I'm pretty sure they know things aren't going well when the score is something like 45-0). But Illinois sports fans care immensely. Don't interpret it as being a fair weather fan.
11. How often do you get to Chicago?
You won't believe this, but some people who live in the suburbs that are half an hour away don't get into the city. It's incredible, but it happens. And if you live at the bottom of the state, trips to Chicago are pretty rare. It is a great city with tons to offer, but it's important to realize that a lot of folks in the state live very far away.
But hey, rather than getting mad at people, invite them to Illinois to see what it’s all about. That should answer their questions even better than this guide could.