13 Reasons Maryland is Awesome
Welcome to Birdland
I am a native Marylander who left her state of lush green hills, quaint cities, and gorgeous Chesapeake landscapes for the hot sun, swaying palms, and turquoise waters of south Florida. As I become acquainted with a new culture, I am constantly remembering my home-state. When I cross paths with fellow transplants from Maryland, we share a momentary twinkle in our eyes, an awareness of what we left behind that other Floridians simply cannot grasp. I realized long before leaving Maryland that it was special, but it wasn't until I reunited with other Marylanders that I realized just how strong our connection is to our funny-shaped home. See below for a list of reasons that we worship birds and accessorize with Maryland motifs.
1. Frederick Douglas.
FREDERICK FREAKING DOUGLAS!!! Probably one of the most important Marylanders, he was born into slavery and illegally learned to read and write as a child. He became a great abolitionist and intellectual, and was a living contradiction to the commonly held belief at the time that African-Americans didn't have the intellectual capacity of European-Americans.
2. Old Bay Seasoning
We put in in everything, even beer.
3. We have the healthiest brains in the US.
4. The Chesapeake Bay.
What would this list be without a prominent dedication to our beloved bay? The Chesapeake is beautiful and provides habitat for hundred of precious plant and animal species. It is the cornerstone of our state culture. It is also the largest bay in the United States, but unfortunately, is it terribly polluted by agricultural runoff from as far away as New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
5. Our State Dog is the Chesapeake Bay Retriever
Our state dog is the Chesapeake Bay Retriever. The Chesapeake Bay is so amazing, it has its own dog! Ever heard of the Gulf of Mexico Malamute? The Puget Sound Pointer? Um, no, you haven't.
Everywhere these adorable guys go, Marylanders fawn over them. They have the lovable personalities of Labrador retrievers, but with a unique curly coat that is usually wet from their compulsive swimming!
6. The Star Spangled Banner Comes From Maryland.
Francis Scott Key, a native of Maryland, wrote the lyrics to the United States national anthem. You're welcome, America.
7. Flying Dog Beer.
Basically all you have to do to convince Marylanders to buy your product is put Old Bay Seasoning in it. Again, you're welcome, America.
8. We have the new and the old.
Our state has pre-colombian artifacts, early colonial ruins, and prehistoric fossils right alongside the most advanced biomedical sector in the world.
9. Cal Ripkin
If you grew up in Maryland in the 1990s, like I did, Cal Ripkin, the Baltimore Orioles "Iron Man", will be your hero forever.
10. The Maryland Flag
Our flag is unique, crazy, and gorgeous, which is why Marylanders love wearing and decorating everything with it.
Buy beautiful Maryland socks.
Perfect for Christmas, birthdays, heck, even 4th of July.
11. We have the coolest shape in the union.
Sure, Rhode Island is cute, and Michigan is interesting, but Maryland puts the FUN in FUNKY.
12. Speaking of funky...
When I travel to other parts of the country, I'm reminded of the fact that Marylanders are kind of...different. Perhaps being connected to the megalopolis of the East coast is a factor, or perhaps there is something in all those blue crabs we keep eating that makes Marylanders a special breed.
See just how weird Maryland really is.
I threw out the Frommer's guide a long time ago. This is my go-to Maryland travel book now.
13. Maryland pride.
Marylanders are intensely prideful people. Our state is small, but our connection to our home is deep. You will meet people from Baltimore, Annapolis, Frederick, the Western mountains, and the Eastern shores who love our state and rave about it. Unlike people from California and Texas, we are humble and unassuming at first. But if you ask one of us how we feel about Maryland, you will see our eyes twinkle and our posture straighten as our pride and love for our noble state wells up inside of us.