Missouri may be one of the most diverse, most beautiful, most interesting states in the country, but no one outside of the Midwest would probably know it. Here are some of the questions we might get when dealing with outsiders.
1. How do you get to the top of the Arch?
You wait in line to ride to the top in a claustrophobia-inducing pod. You look around a while, then take the pod back down.
2. Does everyone in Missouri cheer for the Cardinals?
Heck no! Missouri baseball is polarized between the Cardinals and the Kansas City Royals. Most in the eastern part of Missouri are Cardinals fans, while in the west they are more likely to be rooting for the Royals.
3. Why would you burn your meat?
Because it’s so delicious that way. A staple of Kansas City barbecue, burnt ends are flavorful pieces of meat cut from a beef brisket and served up well done.
4. Are the Rams leaving?
No. At least not right away.
5. Why is it called the Show-Me State?
There are a number of stories and legends behind Missouri's "Show-Me" state origins. Although it’s not an official slogan, it is adopted across the state and is used on Missouri license plates.
One story is that a U.S. congressman who said at a naval banquet in 1899, “"I come from a state that raises corn and cotton and cockleburs and Democrats, and frothy eloquence neither convinces nor satisfies me. I am from Missouri. You have got to show me."
Whether or not he coined the phrase, his speech contributed greatly to its popularity. Whatever its origin, it now is used to describe the unfaltering, conservative, hard to convince character of Missourians.
6. What on earth is frog-gigging?
A gig is a long pole tipped with a multi-pronged spear and frog gigging involves hunting bullfrogs at night with these tools. It’s one of the southern-type things Missourians do.
7. What’s with all the tractors on the roads?
Farming is a big part of Missouri life, and it's not uncommon to find yourself caught behind a slow-moving tractor, unable to pass. Be patient with them, they need the road to do their job.
8. What is Provel cheese?
It is a white processed cheese that is a mixture of cheddar, swiss and provolone and frequently used on St. Louis-style pizza.
9. How do you pronounce Missouri properly?
Depends. Missouree or Missouruh pronunciations vary throughout the state, to such a degree that politicians might use both in one speech in order to please everyone.
10. Why are there so many Mark Twain related things?
He grew up in Hannibal, and based his famous books Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn on his childhood experiences there. We are proud to claim him.
What are some other questions you might be asked about Missouri? How do you answer? Share in the comments below.