Day 359: Become a true Chicagoan

August 27, 2011 § Leave a comment


Chicago flag

It’s taken long enough, but two days away from my permanent departure from this great city, I finally feel like a real local. It isn’t so much about the length of time I’ve been here or knowing the city’s layout, but more about knowing and  following a few key precepts. I’ve outlined them below, to make the experience easier on new Chicagoans. Without further ado, in a (depressing homage) to the comic stylings of self-proclaimed redneck Jeff Foxworthy, I present:

You know you’re a Chicagoan when you…

  1. Pronounce Chicago with a long AH sound between the ‘Chic’ and the “go”, as if you were feeding a baby.
  2. Only eat hot dogs sans-ketchup. As a substitute, try pickles, pickles, and more pickles.
  3. Know that the nickname “Windy City” comes from Chicago’s “hot air-filled” politicians, not from the frigid gusts the city gets off of Lake Michigan in the winter.
  4. Avoid Lakeshore Drive, despite the gorgeous view, because of traffic.
  5. Continue to call the towering black building at the center of the city the Sears Tower instead of Willis Tower, just out of spite.
  6. Have trampled the grass at Grant Park for at least one event.
  7. Hate the CTA, but for some reason love Forrest Claypool.
  8. No longer take visitors to Navy Pier because it’s just a peninsula of sweaty despair.
Let’s enjoy this final weekend, Chicago. I may be leaving you soon, but we’ll always have Paris. And by that I mean Chicago.
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