20 Things Only Michiganders Understand About Winter

Complaining about the weather is the true American pastime, and Michiganders are some of the best complainers around. And we have good reason to be. Summer is hot, spring and fall are too short, and winter is... sigh. But were it not for weather, how would we friendly Midwesterners make small talk in the winter months? Movies? Sports? No. People can have different opinions about those, and we dislike confrontation. Bonding over the weather is far easier, and there’s much to agree on:

1. Winter doesn’t just bring snow

It also brings rain, sleet, hail, and all sorts of cold things to hate. Looking at you, "wintry mix." 

2. If it’s the first snow of the season…

No one will remember how to drive.

3. If it’s the last snow of the season…

No one will remember how to drive... except you, right? Right. You’re the exception. We are each the exception.

Jeff Waraniak/Thrillist

4. Vernors cures colds

And the flu. And sore throats. And stomach aches. Possibly measles?

5. Your car windows might freeze shut


6. Wear whatever you want

Wind chill knows not from fashion.

7. Forrest Gump reference, part 1

Follow Lieutenant Dan’s two rules. One: take good care of your feet. Two: try not to do anything stupid.

8. Forrest Gump reference, part 2

We have every kind of snow there is: little-bitty-stingin’ snow and big-ol’-fat snow. Snow that flies in sideways, and sometimes, snow that even seems to come straight up from underneath. Shoot, it even snows at night.

9. You may be jealous of Alaska

Yes, it will occasionally be warmer in Alaska than in your city. You must remember this.

10. Ice need not be visible to wreak havoc

Black ice is simultaneously dangerous and a name that a band name that seemed badass in high school. 

11. If you are North of Flint...

The snowmobile is a viable form of daily transportation.

12. The U.P. is basically Hoth

But instead of tauntauns, there are snowmobiles. And instead of wampa, there’s yoopers.

13. Potholes are like crazy exes

Pointless to try to fix, and you can avoid them all you want, but they’ll always be nearby, lurking.

14. Spring is marked by the first 50 degree day in March

Backyard BBQ time!

15. Spring doesn't mean you're out of the woods

Think of it as "winter-lite."

16. Lake-effect snow is the real deal

It is the bringer of much tragedy, but also the bringer of much snow days. We see you nodding, Buffalo!

17. Snowmagaddeon, Snowpocalypse, Snowzilla...

Whatever the suffix, it is wise to be prepared.

18. The weather forecast is like the Lions

Make all the predictions you want, but in the end it’s just not going to matter.

19. Hockey helps pass the time

Whether you’re playing on the pond, or watching on the couch.

20. When you have a warm jacket...

Fresh snow, a modicum of admiration for the outdoors, and nowhere in particular to be... Michigan winter is a beautiful thing.

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