I try not to complain too often. I know it’s neither productive for me, nor fun for the listener. Also, it’s usually about something trivial. In fact, a lot of my complaints fall under the the realm of First World Problems.
I kind of love when I realize my complaint is very First World specific. Suddenly, I have a better perspective on losing wireless internet for a few hours or having difficulty deciding which restaurant I want to go to. It becomes easier to see that my complaint is more of a testament to the things I have than the things I don’t have. Basically, I have no reason to complain ever.
I realized today, as I was driving through drifting snow and slippery roads, that Midwesterners also have their own unique problems. Not really big problems, but still, we might find time to complain about them.
I came up with a list of #MidwestProblems:
- There are five different kinds of cheesy potatoes at a potluck but you only have room on your plate for one.
- People in other countries (and sometimes other states) have never heard of your state so you just tell everybody you live by Chicago.
- You are driving in snowy weather and can’t find the perfect speed that’s both safe and shows that you’re a pro at driving in bad weather.
- Which reminds me — SNOW.
- You just moved, and your new town has too many churches to choose from.
- You’re bothered by the fact that your farmer’s market has more hipsters than actual farmers.
- People assume you’re just a “nice Midwesterner.” You want to break the demeaning stereotype without actually being mean.
- You want to go out to eat, but it’s dark out and you don’t want to risk hitting a deer.
- You have to convince other people that music and trends in the Midwest are really only one year behind, not five.
- You can’t make the salsa-seltzer joke from Seinfeld because you pronounce your r’s to the nth degree. (rth degree?)
- You sometimes complain about how annoying you find weather-related small talk….but there’s a storm coming and you really want to talk about it.
- It feels like a small part of your identity is missing because you have no coast to call your own.
- You can’t eat corn any time except summer because nothing comes close to fresh sweet corn.
- You call your sugary, carbonated drink “pop,” and the world hates you for it.
- Smelly cows, smelly pigs.
Of course you can help me add to this list, but be warned — if you are not a Midwesterner, I might have a hard time accepting any harsh or stereotype-ridden entries.
Which leads to one last problem:
16. You are allowed to playfully make fun of your Midwestern home; but when an outsider joins in, you have to tell them “That’s not OK!” Nicely, of course.
What do you think is a #MidwestProblem?