North Dakota December 26, 2016
12 Things People From North Dakota Always Have To Explain To Out Of Towners
North Dakota isn’t necessarily the most popular state, and outside of misconceptions brought on by a movie and now TV series, a lot of people don’t really know much about it. I’ve even heard of a fellow North Dakotan being asked if we live in igloos up here! There are some things out-of-towners just don’t understand, and we constantly get stuck explaining them.
1. It's bison, not buffalo.
Those things that roam our national park and that we've named an entire college athletics team after are called bison - NOT buffalo - and yes there is a difference!
2. We do have other seasons besides winter.
It's not a winter wasteland all year long, really. We have quite a nice summer!
3. Everyone in North Dakota isn't a farmer.
We have lots of farmers and farming community, that's true, and it's thanks to them the rest of the country gets a lot of their food supply, but we DO have urban areas and tons of people with jobs completely unrelated to farming.
4. Don't be surprised if you don't hear everyone saying "yah you betcha."
Certain movies exaggerated certain accents to an extreme. You'll get the occasional "uffda" here, but a "yah" after every sentence? No.
5. The whole state isn't flat.
Sure, you may drive through stretches of fairly flat fields, especially on the eastern half, and we don't have something like the Rocky Mountains, but we do have some pretty dynamic landscapes.
6. And it isn't just corn fields here.
There's also soybeans, wheat, sugar beets, sunflowers...
7. We don't drive tractors everywhere (and certainly not horses anymore either).
North Dakota has more registered vehicles than residents... I think it's safe to say we get around like most everyone else.
8. North Dakota and South Dakota are, in fact, quite different.
I know the names make them easy to mix up, but our state and our southern neighbor have a lot of differences that should set them apart. People always seem to confuse them anyway!
9. There is actually a lot of cool things to do here.
We don't sit around watching tumbleweeds roll by, North Dakota DOES have quite a few awesome places brimming with the opportunity for fun.
10. We're pretty modern.
"Do you have internet there?" is a question I've actually been seriously asked. We have electricity, computers, internet, and pretty much everything else everyone else has. Do people think we live in the 1890s still?
11. Puppy chow isn't actually for dogs.
It'd be a really, REALLY bad idea to feed this to your dog. We call it puppy chow, and other places call it different things, but I think we can all collectively agree that it's absolutely delicious. For humans, that is... not dogs. Do not feed this to dogs.
12. Don't be surprised when strangers are nice to you.
North Dakota Nice is a stereotype that is actually not too far off. It doesn't mean everyone is full of smiles and sunshine here, but that strangers aren't cold and unwelcoming to people they come across. We smile and wave at each other when we pass, even if we've never met, and when in a bind it isn't hard to find a kind passer-by to help out.
What’s one of the weirdest questions you’ve ever had to answer about living in North Dakota? We are a little unusual sometimes and it’s not quite so wrong that people get confused,
especially about these strange things only we do.