Michigan May 07, 2017
11 Foolproof Ways To Make Someone From Michigan Cringe
We Michiganders are a pretty welcoming bunch. Sure, we take our sports teams seriously and will defend the natural beauty of our state to the death, but we try to adhere to classic Midwestern values of kindness and understanding. That said, there are a few surefire ways to make us cringe — and while this might come across as judgmental, we’re only doing it because we care. Here are eleven things that will always be cringeworthy to true-blue Michiganders.
1. Calling it "soda" instead of "pop."
There's no better way to put a Michigander on edge than by referring to pop as "soda." We’re sure you have your own name for fizzy beverages back home, but you’re in Michigan now — and we stand strong in our belief that it will ALWAYS be "pop."
2. Asking us for directions to "Macki-nack" Island.
Ooh, yikes. Sounds like you didn’t quite do your research before planning your trip to the Great Lakes State. Every Michigander has come across this scenario before: someone finds out you’re from Michigan and proudly exclaims, "Hey! I went to Macki-nack Island as a kid!" Close, but no cigar.
3. Claiming that your state is the Mitten State.
Rumor has it that Wisconsin recently tried to refer to itself as the true Mitten State. Um, not so fast — have you SEEN the shape of Michigan? It’s painfully obvious that we’re the ultimate mitten-shaped state, and any claim to the contrary is just plain wrong.
4. Ordering a "pay-stie" while in the Upper Peninsula.
We’ll be forgiving about this one because we can understand the confusion. But there’s something undeniably awkward about standing in line while someone excitedly orders a "pay-stie" to go. We take pasties pretty seriously around here, so it’s probably a good idea to learn the correct pronunciation!
5. Failing to properly make a "Michigan Left."
We’re only cringing because we’re worried about you, out-of-state driver! Michigan lefts can be a little confusing to those who aren't accustomed to them, but we promise they aren’t too tough. Just don’t hold us up on our drive to work. Those Michigan potholes are frustrating enough without a delay as you figure out how to navigate our highways.
6. Eating your coney dog with ketchup.
I just… I mean, why? WHY?
7. Asking us if there are sharks in Lake Michigan.
This might be hard to believe, but there are people in the world who truly don’t realize that the Great Lakes, despite their massive size, aren’t actually oceans. While our beloved bodies of water rival oceans in awe-inspiring beauty, they’re comprised of freshwater and are 100% shark free. We like it that way!
8. Telling us all about your trip to "Salt" Ste. Marie.
Ah, another common mispronunciation. We get it, the spelling is pretty confusing on this one. But you’ll quickly give yourself away as a non-Michigander as soon as you say misspeak while describing our beloved Sault Ste. Marie. They’re not called the "Soo" Locks for nothing, friends!
9. Throwing a fit over a few inches of snow.
When you’re from Michigan, heavy snowfall is just part of life. We could be buried under ten feet of icy slush and we’d probably still manage to shrug it off without a second thought. So it’s especially tough for us to listen when non-Michiganders have a cow over two or three inches of snow. You don’t know how lucky you are!
10. Slipping on a patch of unsalted ice.
Few things are more cringeworthy than watching someone fall, and it’s especially difficult to deal with when we know the fall could easily have been prevented! Michiganders are all too familiar with the necessity of salting the sidewalks after a bout of subzero weather — and we just want you to be safe!
11. Wearing an Ohio State shirt in public.
There are two possible reactions when a Michigander runs into an Ohio State fan who isn’t afraid to show it. The first is pure anger. I mean, how dare you wear that atrocious red get-up in our sacred land? The second is concerned cringing. You’re in for a rough visit to Michigan with that Buckeyes shirt on, buddy.
Alright, fellow Michiganders: it’s your turn. Are there any other cringeworthy occurrences that should have been included on our list? We’d love to hear your thoughts and stories in the comment section below.