Each and every Michigander is different. We all maintain our own beliefs, ideas, and habits — but there are a few traits that seem relatively universal among residents of the Great Lakes State. Here are 11 undeniable unwritten rules that Michiganders abide by.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Never trust an Ohioan.
Every Michigander knows that Ohio is simply the worst state ever. I mean, we can barely stomach the bright red of Ohio State’s logo, so how can we be expected to keep our cool when chatting with someone from Ohio? Sure, this rivalry is all in good fun, but it’s an integral part of being a Michigander.
2. It’s called "pop." Period.
If you live here in the Great Lakes State and you’re craving a fizzy beverage, you should always order pop. Not "soda," "Coke," or anything in between — just pop! Any other word choice will get you plenty of strange looks from fellow diners.
3. Great Lakes should always be chosen over oceans.
Michiganders know that beaches are better when they’re unsalted, and nothing beats the stunning beauty of our Great Lakes. Oceans have plenty of perks, but the Great Lakes are beautiful, refreshing, and completely free of sharks. What’s not to love?
4. When a Pure Michigan ad comes on, stop talking and listen.
Nothing chokes up a Michigander quite like the soothing tones of a Pure Michigan ad. Whether you’re listening on the radio or tuning in on the TV, it’s an absolute unwritten rule that you stop chatting and bask in the beauty of our state’s most celebratory ads.
5. Continue rooting for the Lions, no matter how hopeless it feels.
We just can’t quit the Lions. No matter how many times Detroit’s NFL team lets us down, we Michiganders continue to attend their games, spend our Sundays watching them play, and hope that "this is the year."
6. If someone asks where you’re from, show them on your hand.
What’s a map? People from Michigan might as well be required by law to point out our hometowns on their hands — that’s how often it’s done in the Great Lakes State! Then again, why shouldn’t we? With built-in maps right on our bodies, this one is a no-brainer.
7. When you’re feeling sick, reach for the Vernors first.
When a Michigander has a stomachache, the cure is obvious: grab a bottle of Vernors and take a few sips. This tasty ginger ale seems to cure maladies of all sorts, and it’s impossible to switch back to "real" medicine once Vernors has been added to the realm of possibilities!
8. There’s no such thing as "too much beach time."
Our beaches are magnificent, and we could easily spend all day lounging along the waterfront. When summertime rolls around, there are few places a Michigander would rather be than the beach — and don’t ever try to tell us that we’ve overstayed our welcome!
9. Regardless of whether it’s necessary, add an "s" to the end of store names.
Meijer’s. Kroger’s. The list continues. Whether or not it’s grammatically correct, many Michiganders have the habit of adding a possessive "s" to the end of various business’ names. When you live in Michigan, it’s just something you do!
10. Never depend on the accuracy of a Michigan weather report.
90 degrees at the end of September, snow in May, balmy weather in the midst of January followed by six inches of snow. Here in Michigan, Mother Nature seems to be unpredictable, and that means it’s unwise to completely trust a forecast. When you live in the Great Lakes State, you learn to dress in layers!
11. When the going gets tough, the tough head up north.
When life gets stressful, few experiences are more relaxing for a Michigan resident than journeying up north. Of course, "up north" takes on a different meaning for each and every Michigander, but everybody’s "up north" has a few of the same traits: relaxation, natural beauty, and plenty of family togetherness. What’s not to love?
Are there any other unwritten Michigan rules that should have been included on our list? Share your thoughts and suggestions in the comment section below!