When you’ve got non-Nebraskans coming to visit, you’re bound to run into the some of the same questions over and over. We think we’re pretty easy to understand, but it seems that not everyone feels the same. These are some of the most common things you’ll probably end up having to explain to those not fortunate enough to be Nebraskan.
1. Those friendly strangers don't want anything from you.
They're not trying to mug you or convert you or sell you a used car. We just really like chatting with people, even if we don't know them.
2. If someone raises a finger or two at you when you're out driving, it's not an insult.
That's a friendly thing we do, and you can consider it a compliment if you get more than the perfunctory single finger.
3. You really can't get by without a car here.
When you live in the country, you need it to get literally anywhere. When you live in a small town you'll probably need one to get to the grocery store a town or two over. And if you live in the city, you can forget about public transportation.
4. Even if you have a car, don't take it near Lincoln on game day.
If you do, pack snacks and water because you'll be moving at about .5 MPH forEVER.
5. That roadwork is never going to be done. Ever.
know there's a good reason for it. That doesn't make it any less annoying.
7. Sometimes the traffic jams will be caused by wayward animals.
You'll occasionally have to stop to let some wild turkeys, a family of deer, or maybe even an escaped cow or two cross the road.
8. Nebraskans take care of each other - to the extreme.
Some of the most heartwarming tales to come out of Nebraska have something to do with neighbors caring for each other. Like when a farmer gets sick and can't harvest his own fields, so his neighbors step in and take care of it - and they wouldn't think of taking anything in payment for their services. I'm getting a little misty-eyed just thinking about it.
9. It's probably a little cliché, but we live on sweetcorn during harvest season.
10. There are very, very few perfect weather days here.
If it's not the blowing snow and paralyzing low temperatures, it's the blinding heat and stifling humidity. Or the wind. Always the wind.
11. New York did NOT invent the Reuben.
Don't let anyone tell you they did. That baby is 100% a Nebraska creation.
12. Lake McConaughy is our beach.
I mean, we have other lakes to swim in, but Lake Mac is THE beach.
13. Professional movers are for quitters.
I've seen pickup trucks piled so high with possessions that I'm positive it was illegal...but that's how we do moving here. Unless you're going out of state, you find a couple of friends, load up the pickup, and then reward yourselves with cold beer and hot pizza.
14. It's ok - the hot dogs and the beer are
supposed to be red.
Fairbury hot dogs are heaven on a bun, even if they aren't actually made in Fairbury anymore. And that red beer may look a little odd, but it's a delicious Nebraska specialty.
15. The sky touches the ground here, and we'll drop everything for a great sunset.
I know I've pulled over plenty of times to watch a colorful sunset, and I'm not the only one.
16. Pilgrimages to the other side of the state are a rite of passage.
The eastern and western parts of Nebraska may as well be different states, and if you live on the extreme end of either side, you have to make that trek at least once to see - literally - how the other half lives.
17. County fairs - and especially the state fair - are perfectly legitimate reasons to miss a couple of days of work.
Hey, if I'm showing livestock I've got to be there. Sorry, boss, but I'm using that vacation day.
18. When you're craving Runza in the winter, wait until Tuesday.
Temperature Tuesdays are a thing of beauty in January and February. Whatever the temperature is at 6 am, that's how much a Runza will cost you all day (when you buy a drink and fries, but still).
19. Not flat, not flat, not flat.
I feel like I'm beating a dead horse here, but it seems like we still have to remind people all the time - Nebraska is not nearly as flat as everyone thinks it is.
I could actually go on and on – we’ve got a lot of cute little foibles and customs that out-of-towners find a little baffling. But they’re ultimately endearing, of course. What other things do you find yourself explaining to people who aren’t from here? Tell us about it in the comments!