Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Nebraska is Potatoes

It's been a year plus a few odd months that I've been an LA resident. And I have to say, I've gained a pretty solid handle on the daily LA life. It was a major change, but one I've been able to adapt to. And yes, I can weave through traffic on any major freeway like it's nobody's business, I wear a sweatshirt when it's a chilly 65 degrees, and finally, I've become accustomed to green smoothies, squash and <insert random vegetable here> soup, and yoga on the reg.

Now, despite adopting these "So, LA" characteristics, there are still many, many others, to which I continue to gawk. And, being an individual who is still considered "fresh from the farm," I spend many of my waking life shocking people with the ways of Nebraskans.

1. It's not a highway, it's a freeway.

I had to make the conscious correction while writing paragraph one. I still call them highways, and apparently, it's one of the top ten worst things you could do. I have, however, taken the time to learn the difference between highways and freeways. Freeways are controlled-access roads for uninterrupted high-speed traffic. (This can be confusing as I've been stopped for hours in one spot on a freeway due to BS California things.) Comparatively, highways are just bigger or high trafficked roads that can include stoplights or other types of traffic signals.

Honestly, the difference is so very specific that I don't care enough to change my ways. It's a freaking highway.

2. Did you just say Café?

The one discrepancy with this issue, is that this might relate to only rural Nebraska. I've been poked fun at for this many-a-time (even in Omaha). My pronounciation of the word café puts the emphasis on the last syllable. Apparently, the rest of America puts the emphasis on the first syllable - CA-fe. Technically, either way is acceptable, but I can see the eyebrows raising as it falls from my lips.

3. Beef, it's what's for dinner. Tonight.

It might be a stereotype to say, "I'm from Nebraska, I like steak." But I don't care. I'm from Nebraska. I fucking like steak. And burgers. And chicken. And other types of meat. You'd think I was eating an entire pack of Ho-Ho's or a can of botulism. When people say they're Vegan or Vegetarian, it is not a drill. I repeat! It is not a drill! Someone I know, who shall remain nameless, likes to dirty eye anyone chewing on any type of meat. I'm not judging you for your sad, meat-less salad while I devour a Chicago-style hotdog.

Oh my god, I want hotdogs.

I think my next biggest problem is anyone ordering a burger anything other than well done. I don't want to drop the bomb of "Dark Dinners with Catie," but you're asking for E-Coli or Mad Cow. Let's be real.

4. Mini-mart

7-Eleven, Am Pm, Shell stations, these are either referred to as gas stations or convenience stores. And when you say mini-mart, it's similar to saying "pop." They ask you to repeat yourself and look at you like you're speaking a long, lost language. Which, I suppose, is relatively close to the issue.

5. Tanking, floating, shotgunning, or any other semi-redneck weekend activity.

It was last week that I was telling a story about my parents going tanking. I had to explain, in great detail, what it meant, and also accept the laughs and accusations to follow. I think it's here that people look at me as a miracle that I wear shoes, have teeth, and don't have a banjo strapped to my back. If they haven't shoved themselves into and inner tube to float down the Niobrara, hauling your personal cooler by a rope for an entire day, they've haven't lived.

It's here that I realize this list goes on. And on. And on. It's a pretty sweet spot to be in the center of two very different worlds. I get to reminisce about drinking in cornfields, while I drink mimosas on a beautiful patio outlooking the ocean. And that's pretty f'ing neat.
Nebraska to California is like apples and potatoes. The daily life is so drastically different. And neither is better.

Nebraska is better.

Thanks for soundin' down.