Thought Catalog
October 13, 2013

35 Important Things Only Chicagoans Will Understand

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What is the issue?

1. It’s not called the Windy City because of the weather. It’s because of the politics. However, on a really cold day, you won’t care about the difference.

2. In the winter, it’s not worth it to go anywhere that’s more than five blocks from your house. Get to know your neighborhood.

3. It’s called the Sears Tower. It will always be called the Sears Tower. The Willis Tower is not a thing.

4. Lebron James is the devil.

5. People who talk on the phone on public transit are the worst people in the world and deserve to be shunned from society. That is, until you need to take a call.

6. Ventra is the worst thing that has ever happened to people.

7. It’s impossible to root for the White Sox and the Cubs at the same time. Like being a Republican AND a Democrat, that’s just not how it works. You must choose.

8. You do not need a car, but if you have a car, you will be treated like royalty.

9. If you’re driving somewhere, always factor in fifteen extra minutes into your commute for parking, especially if it’s to Lincoln Park. But when you get the perfect spot right away, it’s like a gift from God.

10. The “Chicago accent” has been wildly exaggerated, and when you actually hear it, it’s like seeing a dog walk on its hind legs.

11. If the bus is crowded, move back. It’s not really that hard.

12. The Bean is actually called the “Cloud Gate,” but don’t worry. Chicagoans don’t call it that either.

13. Slow walkers are a scourge against humanity.

14. Your building’s heat will never come on when it gets cold. Ever.

15. Oprah might be just a daytime talk show host to you, but to us, she’s a goddess.

16. Summer isn’t real summer without a kick-ass musical festival. We have two major ones — as well as a million in total.

17. There are things in life that you just have to deal with, like crappy weather or that a Trader Joe’s will never open in your neighborhood. A train car that smells like pee is not one of those things.

18. When you want a table at your favorite restaurant, you’re willing to show up at 4:30 P.M. to get it. (See: The Chicago Diner, The Girl and the Goat, Kuma’s Corner.)

19. Don’t order a Miller Lite at a Gastropub. You can, but you might get secretly judged.

20. Always avoid the train during sports games. You’ll thank yourself later.

21. “Fukudome” is a person, not a suggestion.

22. Real cities have musicals named after them.

23. The South Side is a big place with lots of different neighborhoods and when outsiders treat it like a death sentence, it pisses us off. Seriously, guys, you don’t know shit about the South Side.

24. No one wants to smell your sandwich on the train.

25. Of all of Chicago’s sports, “complaining about your local politicians” may be the most hallowed.

26. Riding the Red Line late at night makes you fucking hate college students, even when you are a college student.

27. There’s more to coffee than Starbucks. Seriously, you have just about twenty other options in a three-block radius.

28. Just because your team doesn’t win doesn’t mean they aren’t the greatest team ever, and there’s almost nothing they could do to make you stop loving them.

29. If you have bad words to say about Jay Cutler, never say them in public, especially around drunk people. It could get violent.

30. Real hot dogs have relish on them. If you like mayo on your hot dog, you should probably move.

31. Thin crust pizza is for quitters.

32. Whether you are 312 or 773, you will take a strange amount of pride in your area code.

33. Unless you’re Sufjan Stevens, you do not pronounce the “S” in “Illinois.” You might as well just slap us in the face.

34. We’re not better or worse than New York, just different, and we find the expectation to compete exhausting. No one really gives a fuck about the “rivalry.”

35. However, we were the best Gotham city. TC mark

image – Flickr/phvolmer