Things from Wisconsin People Outside of Wisconsin Don’t Understand

The Winters are Worse than You Think

Lake effect snow on Halloween. 0" the day before, 8" that morning.
Lake effect snow on Halloween. 0″ the day before, 8″ that morning.

It’s true, we don’t get 12-36 inch dumpers like mountainous states, but what we get typically sticks from November through March, give or take 2 months on each side. That is unless you live in the towns on the Lake Superior or Lake Michigan coastlines. Then lake effect snow is a real thing.

And I know Westerners like to complain about skiing in 5-below-zero weather at 12,000 ft. above sea level, but how would you like to spend the better part of the winter that cold at sea level? Growing up, I remember schools shutting down due to cold and -65 windchills.

Add in the lack of daylight and lack of outdoor recreation (should you choose to go outside) and seasonal depression is a real thing. I didn’t even realize I had it until I moved to Colorado.

Winter camping on the shore of Lake Superior on New Year's Eve. It was -15 with the windchill.
Winter camping on the shore of Lake Superior on New Year’s Eve. It was -15 with the windchill.

We Don’t Care About Canadian or Vermont Syrup

We have our own.

We’re not Canada or Vermont, but being the 4th largest producer in the U.S. means there’s more than enough to go around. And it tastes just as good.

A maple leaf in the fall with some turbo dork in the background. No photoshopping required.
A maple leaf in the fall with some turbo dork in the background. No photoshopping required.

Our Autumns are just as nice as New England’s

While we don’t have 4,000′ peaks like New England, we have plenty of rolling hills and arguably the most lakes and rivers of any state. (Screw you, Minnesota.) That sets quite the backdrop for a plethora of colorful Maple, Oak, Ash, and Birch trees when the leaves start changing.

Colorado autumns? Pleeeaaaassse. People go bizzonkers for Aspen yellow. But that’s all you got. One color. Yellow. To make it even worse, there’s not even any Fall Festivals, pumpkin patches, or corn mazes.

The Mosquitoes are the Worst

This might be the only time I’ll allow Minnesota to be Wisconsin’s equal, but our mosquitoes are truly horrendous. All that water I just mentioned? It’s a breeding ground for these little bastards and they’re in every lake, pond, puddle, and bird bath.

And what right do I have to speak against the rest of the U.S.?

I lived in TX for a year, and while their mosquito bites are the worst, they’re few and far between. I’ve spent two months working in two separate remote locations in FL. Granted, it wasn’t smack-dab in the middle of the Everglades, but I had representatives from both those locations claiming it to be the worst. I also spent a month working in Vermont’s White Mountains. I don’t even remember seeing a mosquito.

Sorry, Florida, despite your humidity and pretty Spanish Moss, your mosquitoes aren't that bad.
Sorry, Florida, despite your humidity and pretty Spanish Moss, your mosquitoes aren’t that bad.

For the Love of Packers and Badgers

When people from out of state hear the word Wisconsin I’m betting the first thing they think of is cheese, followed closely by Packers. I’m not going to guess the actual reason why we’re so passionate about the Packers, but I will just state that it’s the smallest city in the U.S. that hosts an NFL team and usually ranks Top 5 in the NFL for all income generated and crazy fans (usually 1 or 2). I think we’re pretty proud of that.

And if you look at the rest of the professional sports in WI, the Bucks and Brewers, there’s not a lot of history or prestige associated with those teams. The Brewers at least used to be the Braves and was home to Hammerin’ Hank Aaron for awhile, and there is a decent fan following (which I don’t understand since they’ve only appeared in one World Series; I think it has something to do with a reason to binge drink). But the Bucks? Why are they still there?

You’d think we’d like hockey given our icy winter status and proximity to Canada and Minnesota, but it’s just not true. We don’t care.

After all of that, the only other team(s) in the state to root for are the Badgers. It’s funny, when people think of college football, places like FL, OH, TX, AL, and MI come to mind. When people think of college basketball, it’s usually Duke, North Carolina, Kansas, and Kentucky. But did you know the Badgers hold the nation’s longest bowl bid/NCAA tourney streak?

That’s just good sportsball.

Binge Drinking

I’m not saying I’m proud of this, I’m just saying, please re-read the section on Winter. There’s a lot of time with nothing to do. And in the summer, with all those lakes and rivers, who DOESN’T want to have some beers while they’re out boating and fishing?


**Just enough beer and brats for one person to start their evening

We’re just as Bass-Ackwards as some Southern States

Big trucks, country music, beer-drinkin, rebel flag displayin’ rednecks. We love guns and shootin’ stuff too.

Travel outside of Madison and Milwaukee metro sprawl areas and that’s commonplace. I’ve had many a tense moments almost getting into fights just because my friend happened to be black.

Random internet picture. May or may not be WI.
Random internet picture. May or may not be WI.

And for all of those reasons (even the bad ones), I’m proud to say I’m from Wisconsin.

The Great Con of T-Shirt Manufacturers

I know what you’re thinking, “what the heck does this have to do with ‘Low Gravity’ or the outdoors or climbing or anything??” The answer is simple: Nothing.

I’m doing it. I’ve said it twice in the past two posts, and I’m going to fully embrace it. I feel like I’ve lost all direction of this website and don’t have a concrete goal anymore, so you know what? This blog is going to be my blog!

Enough trying to force myself to write about things I’m not inspired about “in the moment”. Enough limiting my thoughts and words to climbing and outdoors. They’ll come back. They will. But for now, I just need to write for me. (How incredibly cliché.) And today, the burning topic on my mind:

T-shirts

Someone, somewhere, at some point – probably, “the man” – decided he or she wanted to individually mess with me. What I have done to deserve this, I do not know, but there is one thing for certain: I am being messed with.

This is a great example of several things: 1) Bathroom selfie; 2) Shrunken t-shirt; 3) Not a chick magnet; 4) Lack of muscles
This is a great example of several things: 1) Bathroom selfie; 2) Shrunken t-shirt; 3) Not a chick magnet; 4) Lack of muscles

If I go to a store, and try on a medium t-shirt that fits, it’s guaranteed to shrink after the first washing. I wash in cold; I dry on medium.

Then the next time I buy a t-shirt, I still try a medium on first, and if it fits, I’m all like, “yeah, I got you; I’m going with a large this time (thinking it will shrink and then fit well).” So, I buy a large. I wear it out in public once, slightly oversized, and then I wash it. Wash in cold, dry on medium. Guess what? It doesn’t shrink!

I now have a closet of t-shirts, half of which are slightly too small that make me look like I’m trying way too hard to show off what little muscle I have, and the other half is too big and doesn’t show off any of the little muscle I have.

One time I got so fed up with this vicious cycle that I actually spent $80 (total) on two t-shirts. I bought them to fit (in the store), wore them, washed them, and they didn’t shrink. Basically, I’ve come to this conclusion:

If you want to pay normal prices and not go broke on t-shirts, you’ll be forced to play the guessing game and become incredibly frustrated.

Or

If you want to look good, you’ll pay out your butt for higher quality fabric.

 

Either way, The Man wins, and I lose.

However, if anyone wants to point me in the direction of a t-shirt company in which this doesn’t happen and also doesn’t charge an arm and a leg, I’d be happy to try it out. Better yet, how ’bout you point the company to me. I’ll gladly take some Blue Steele photos and rep your brand. 😉

 

I’m sure you were all completely riveted by this post. Stay tuned next week when I tackle the hard hitting issue of pants for guys with athletic builds. It’ll be a nail biter!