Living in the Midwest and Why we Love it here

Ah, I love the smell of turkey manure in the morning...

People who live outside of the Midwest region of the United States have strange views of the people who live inside it. We're all cowboys. We all own farms. We're a bunch of hicks. We own at least one tractor. We have farm animals, whether we have the space for them or not. We have anywhere from 3-10 children. We run around barefoot in overalls and wife beaters (the tank tops). We don't know anything about new technology.

While this may be true for some people, a lot of us are pretty advanced. Heck, just look at me! ... Well, okay, I'm a bad example; I'm still stuck on dial-up (OH EM GEE, I LIVE IN THE STONE AGES!) and I don't have the latest-and-greatest cell phone (half a lie; I just updated my phone like, a couple of months ago. My old one was 2 years old and had scratches and dents and problems up the yin-yang). But I watch the news and read the paper and keep up with what's going on in our wonderful world.

Misconceptions make me giggle every time I leave the beautiful Midwest, and, being the smart-ass that I am, I have to go and correct people who tell me them. So I've compiled a list of things that make us Midwesterners Midwesterners, and why most of us love the way we are and where we live.

We don't all live on farms, people.

Really. We don't. There are cities and towns and blips on the map, just like any other state/region. We even have malls! GASP! It's madness!

There are a lot of farms in the Midwest, and for good reason; there's plenty of fertile soil here. Those glaciers that passed through our lands left tons of mineral deposits that seeped into the ground, causing them to be perfect for crops and feed.

The only problem with farms are that they smell. And boy, do they ever! Most people who don't own farms don't generally live next to them because of this. They might live near the fields, but they're not going to be right next to the barnyard. Even being by the field can smell like mad when it's time to go fertilize the soil. And since they discovered that turkey poo works just as great, if not better, than cow poo, they've been spreading that gut-wrenching smelly crap all over the place. Trust me when I say you do NOT want to be home when they're spreading it in the middle of a 90 degree and up summer.

Y'all come back now, y'hear?

Yeah, we sometimes talk like hicks. Yeah, we sometimes look like hicks. But we're not all hicks. Oh, no, we are not.

I can't really explain where our accent comes from or exactly why we talk the way we do, but yes; we have an accent. And it does sound kind of goofy to those on the outside. Not all of us have the same accent, though. I myself happen to have a southern twang within my Minnesota lingo, but no Minnesota accent to account for. Seriously, I don't sound half-Canadian. I don't run around saying, "Ya, sure, you betcha!" and "Golly gee willickers!", though I will admit that last one makes me laugh every time I hear it.

The general hick appearance is similar to the trailor-trash look, minus the trailor and adding more space for junk. There aren't that many hick-y looking people out here. Honest. There are some places, and I can actually name one place right down the road from me, but for the most part, these people are sparse. We take care of our yards, we don't let junk accumulate on our lawns, we do our damnedest to show that we are orderly, clean people.

Not that it stops others from thinking we're hillbillies, but we're going to keep trying anyway!

The Partridge Family is not a good reference for the Midwestern home.

Plus, we don't go around singing and dancing and making money off our childrens' exploitation. :-P

The average number of kids within a simple nuclear family (meaning one dad, one mom, and kids) is 3-4. Not a very big number. Yeah, okay, there are outliers, but even then, I've yet to meet a family with more than 8 kids. 8's a lot of diapers, but it's still not 10, like some people believe.

One of the nice things about the Midwest is the fact that we're just nicer people. Our divorce rates aren't as high as other places. Our crime rates, while they're still not pretty, aren't as high, either. We're just nice people all around. This tidbit of information seems to have leaked out to the general populace, so we're at high risk for being taken advantage of by those outside the Midwest, but we tend to take that risk anyway because we believe in the mantra, "Oh, they can't be all bad!"

I'm fat. So what?

Notice I didn't say Obese. I'm not obese. Obese, to me, is a girl over 200 lbs (with a few exceptions, i.e. my best friend Cassie is over 200, but she's seriously beautiful! Remind me to get you a picture of her) who doesn't try to work on her health and is that weight solely because of her laziness. And that's icky.

A lot of us are fat. Whoop-de-doo. The nice thing about our fat, and why I laugh every time I hear a skinny girl complain, is because it gets COLD. IT GETS REALLY REALLY FREAKING COLD. The winters are NOT nice to us. Due to this fact, we have built ourselves a protective layer of fat that helps our core body temperature from dropping low enough to induce hypothermia. As my father and I told my mother a few days ago, "We're fat because we go outside in the winter and prefer to keep our fingers and toes attached."

Okay, so that doesn't entirely make sense, but MAN, she complaines too much about our weight! >.< It's not my fault I have the Shimko build!

We are made to survive our harsh winters. We protect ourselves with an extra layer of warmness. We're a little chubby. Stop whining about it.

It's beautiful here.

It really is. There are hills, and valleys, and lakes, and rivers, and forests, and gardens, and parks... It's enough to make an artist cry with joy.

Our beauty is part of what keeps us here. Why would we go off to New York City or San francisco when we can have all the luxuries of life AND the beauty of nature? We've got gorgeous birds and fantastic animals and shimmery-shiny fish. We've got tons and tons of flowers and vegetation that help accent the wonders of our region. We've got it all, man.

We've got our share of ugly, too. There are landfills and dumps and junk yards, polluted cities and factories, seagulls flying around with plastic can holder thingies stuck to their necks. That's humanity for you. We're still human, just like you are, and we still have our faults. The grass isn't always greener on the other side, but I will say our grass is pretty dang green, and we try very hard to keep it that way.

The job market may suck, but we've still got places to work.

It's hard to find a job nowadays. I'm not going to argue that. One of the best things about the Midwest is that we have a ton of jobs that need to be done. They're not all pretty jobs, but at least they'll pay you to do them. There are county, state and national parks that need to be taken care of. There are houses that need repair when tornadoes and other storms hit. There are farms that need a little extra help. There are temp agencies. :-P

If you're looking to work in the big city, you're going to have a hard time finding an opening anywhere unless you've got a special skill they're really looking for. But we've still got factories that need workers and old people who need taking care of and hospitals looking for nurses. The best thing is, we have colleges. Yay college! They'll teach you anything you want to learn (for a fee, but that's just life) and help you find a job in the field you want to work in. There are a lot of fields that need people, too.

Worse comes to worse, there's always Wal-Mart.

We may be a bunch of crazy hillbillies, but we love where we live and we live where we love, and that's all any of us really need in life. The Midwest is a wonderful place to live, and we wouldn't trade it for anywhere in the world.

... Well, okay. I would. But I'm weird and hate the cold. >.<

Thanks for taking the time to read this hub, and "Y'all come back now, y'hear?"

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Comments 15 comments

seamist profile image

seamist 8 years ago from Northern Minnesota

Good post, Kirka! You spent a lot of time on it. Thank you. By the way, I live in Minnesota too.

Jen


Kika Rose profile image

Kika Rose 8 years ago from Minnesota Author

Don't you hate the cold? And black ice? And evil geese? And frostbite? And having to plug your car into the wall when it gets extremely cold out, and those ridiculous one-piece snow suits ("I can't move my arms!"), and frozen gas, and winter electic bills?

I'd love to live somewhere warm... Like Arizona... That would be my dream-place to live. No more stupid snow and ice and cold and windchills!


seamist profile image

seamist 8 years ago from Northern Minnesota

Actually, I do hate the cold. I orignally grew in Nebraska, and it was quite a bit warmer than here in the winter. However, it was also hotter in the summer. I hate hot weather even more than cold! Believe it or not, I lived about 90 miles north of Anchorage for almost two years, and it is just as cold here as it was there. However, what I do love about the Midwest is all the quaint small towns and the scenery.

Jen


Ryan Hupfer profile image

Ryan Hupfer 8 years ago from San Francisco, CA

Thanks SO much for answering my request! Coming from Indiana it really brought me back to the good ol' days in the Midwest. Keep up the great Hubbing!


Kika Rose profile image

Kika Rose 8 years ago from Minnesota Author

The scenery is nice, especially when the flowers bloom and when the leaves turn colors. But trust me when I say growing up in a small town sucks. There's almost nothing for teens to do. About the only thing we can do is make up our own entertainment. But it'd be nice to have a recreation center like a YMCA or something out here. When I was younger, we had a sweet roller rink. It was the cool place to be on a Friday night, and some Saturdays they'd have all-nighters, and huge parties for Halloween and Christmas and New Year's and Valentine's Day. But it closed down 6-8 years ago because it wasn't making enough money. The building then became a church, and now it's some package center or something like that.


akeejaho profile image

akeejaho 7 years ago from Some where in this beautiful world!

Nice Hub! Made me laugh, and just added to my appreciation for this beautiful part of the country. But you are right, it gets friggin cold here!

I am a transplant, and of all the places I have lived, this is my favorite. I have deer that look in our windows, and young prairie hawks roosting right outside in the trees. I smell the sweet alfalfa in the summer, and see the lakes of flax and sunflowers all around for color and interest. We do have it all! Thanks for reminding me. (It will give me something to think about in the next hour or so that it takes to get the three foot snow drift out of the driveway, without a snowblower.)


Maria 7 years ago

BRAVO! I'm not from Midwest (live in NYC), and I wasn't even born in this country, but it drives me crazy to hear people talk trash about middle America (and America in general). This one moron I got into a verbal fight with a while back claimed that 90% of ALL people in America are fat, ugly and illiterate, that there are NO beautiful architecture or nature in America, and that the only food available in America is McDonald's and hot dogs. Oh, and 95% of all students in our colleges are foreigners, because Americans are too stupid for college. Some people ought to be shot... Sorry for ranting, great post!


Tyler 7 years ago

yea i live in the midwest in southern IL...along the praire and farms!!i love it hear...good fishing


Sunny SoCal 5 years ago

It's February here in sunny Southern California. I'm dreading my trip to the Midwest next weekend to attend a wedding. Every time I go to the Midwest, I feel like life is in slow motion. I get sick of people telling me there's more food and "did you get enough to eat." Most of the people I meet who live in the Midwest also live very sheltered lives. Please tell me there is something more to talk about over dinner than Nebraska football. News flash, it's February and the football season is over.

I think I'll go to the beach now and enjoy the sunny fabulous weather outside. I'll probably enjoy a spinach, egg white, vegetable omelet on my way to the beach. I'll miss the healthy food here in So Cal next week as the staple of any breakfast menu in Omaha comes with ham, eggs, potatoes, more potatoes, butter, extra butter, and did I mention potatoes?


Southern California 5 years ago

You couldn't pay me enough money to live anywhere near the midwest.


Laura Morton 5 years ago

Beautiful. I'm from Texas and the heat is a killer. My husband is from Canada/Barbados. He's ready to move. But he longs for the beach.

Cheers,


camdjohnston12 profile image

camdjohnston12 5 years ago

Happy living!


ryan 5 years ago

Kentucky isn't in the midwest its in the south


Vicky 4 years ago

I live in England and I love to hear about Midwest America, I have read a lot of books about it and I find it so interesting, I will one day come and travel around America, especially around the Midwest, I would love to hear your comments about the place you live in America, and I can let you know about the differences from your homeland mine x


John 3 years ago

Ah, douchebag Californians stinking an otherwise positive Midwest article.

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