While enjoying Aerial America on the Smithsonian Channel, I’ve mused about what we call ourselves in each of these 50 connected, yet vastly different, United States.
That led to musing about what residents in parts of other countries call themselves, and what names they give the demarcations that form legal, interior boundaries.
I know Canada has provinces.. I think Mexico has states, and Italy has regions. Beyond that I’m ignorant. When I comment to across-the-pond blogging buddies, I don’t even know whether they call their country England or Great Britain, let alone what interior demarcations the countries of the United Kingdom use.
Sure, I could Google this. But wouldn’t it be fun to hear from you – either in comments here, or in a post of your own – helping me fill in some blanks?
Without any of us checking Google?
You could throw in a tidbit or two about a friendly rivalry within a state; or a ‘nit’ between rival states; or what the heck you call yourself in Saskatchewan (Saskatchews? Saskatchewanian?)
I thought I know how most of our states’ residents refer to themselves, but once I started the list I see lots of blanks. I’ll tell a couple of tales, and maybe ‘yinz’ can take it from there.
Colorado – we call ourselves Coloradans.
Overall, we’re a pretty friendly bunch, probably because so many of us are transplants from another state. If you migrated from east of here, chances are you were headed to ‘California or Bust’, but you made a pit stop somewhere along Colorado’s gorgeous Front Range and never got back in the car.
Coloradans think Nebraskans are ya-hoo farmers, but that’s because their farm-bred, corn-and-beef-fed university football teams ran roughshod over us for way too many years.
The only other out-of-staters we turn up our noses at are Texas skiers. Honestly I love Texans other than pseudo-skiers. They fly charters into our mountain towns in the winter; deplane wearing their one-of-a-kind Prada Skiwear; light their cigars and head down the ski slope twanging, “how d’y’all stop these thangs?”
Michigan – call themselves Michiganders (unless you identify strongly with the long-simmering tension between the Yoopers and the Trolls).
That little feud notwithstanding, Michiganders are generous and welcoming, although they’ve never forgiven upstart Indiana for building a toll road that includes a 2-mile stretch around the southern end of Lake Michigan. Michiganders don’t go to Indiana, but they do travel to Illinois to visit Chicago; and that little intervening stretch of Indiana toll road means they have to shuck out some coin to those greedy Indiana folks.
New Hampshire and New York – I don’t know what either state calls themselves, but I know for certain New Hampshirites aren’t fond of New Yorkers!
One year Hub and I flew into Portland, Maine for a road trip up the coast then across Maine to tour New Hampshire. As we walked to the lot to get our rental car, I saw our assigned car had a New York license plate.
Me muttering: “New York?!? Ugh! They’ll just love seeing us coming.”
Hub: “What are you talking about?”
Me: “I’m pretty sure New Englanders don’t like New Yorkers.”
Hub: “Why not?”
Me: “Pushy ,,, loud … overly intent on getting the absolute best bargain. Take your pick.”
Hub: “Oh pshaw!”
No, he didn’t actually utter ‘pshaw’ but he didn’t believe our car license would make a difference.
Fast forward to a heavily-forested New Hampshire country lane where I spy a weathered ‘Antiques’ sign with an arrow pointing down a long dirt driveway. We stop well short of the house where we see a woman move the curtain and peer out at us. As we get out of our car, she hurries out the door.
“We’re closed,” she said in that tone that means ‘go away’.
I quickly responded, “We’re not from New York; we’re from Colorado. This is our rental car.”
“Well come on in,” she smiled with a welcoming sweep of her hand.
So there you are! You can give me answers for the following list; leave a snippet about your state or country, or write a post of your own if you’ve got something to say.
Something tells me you do!
New Mexico New Mexicans
N. Dakota North Dakotans
S. Dakota South Dakotans
N. Carolina ?
S. Carolina ?
W. Virginia West Virginians
New York ?
New Jersey ?
Rhode Island Rhode Islanders
New Hampshire ?