21 things that Detroiters love

The term "Detroiter" once applied to nearly two million people, and although that was back in the '50s, opportunities in this city are on the rise, and one can’t help but think that, much like the proverbial Tuskan Raiders, they will soon be back, and in greater numbers. In the meantime, there are 700,000 strong who wear the Detroiter badge with pride, who downright love this city, its people, and all the oddities that make Detroit... Detroit. For example, these 21 things:

Coneys Things Detroiters Love DET
Jeff Waraniak

1. Coneys
A given. But it's not just about the dogs. It's about the restaurants and all the loyalty and heated arguments they inspire. We love them. We celebrate them. We need them. Everywhere.

2. That line from "Don’t Stop Believin’"
It doesn't matter that you were neither born nor raised in South Detroit… no one was, because there is no such thing. Alas, "Southwest" and "Downriver" lack the proper syllables. Do what you gotta do, Journey.

3. Lovehating the Lions
It’s like badmouthing a member of the family. It’s fine if you do it, but if anyone from the outside does it, not cool. Actually, you know what? It's cool. Things are that bad.

4. Jaywalking
Detroiters just call it "walking". We go where we please. Not to be confused with the Leno sketch. That sucked.

Graffiti Things Detroiters Love DET
Jeff Waraniak

5. Graffiti
A tradition embraced long ago. There really are some amazing artists in the city, from the Grand River Creative Corridor to the walls of Michigan Central Station. They’re also capable of tagging things in record time.

6. Electing dubious city officials
Corrupt my city once, shame on you. Corrupt it a couple more times, shame on me… eventually someone will emerge a hero... right? Here’s to you, Mr. Duggan?

7. Really run-down dive bars.
The smokier, the grimier, the older, the better.

8. Indifference toward the Pistons
The flicker of their title hopes is as dim as Josh Smith's basketball IQ. 2004 feels like 30 years ago.

9. Trees
Damn straight, trees! We’ve got one of the most tree-filled cities in the country. Chalk that up to urban sprawl and Detroit’s relative emptiness, but also to the work of organizations like The Greening of Detroit. Most of them are even free of graffiti!

10. Dressing up the Spirit of Detroit
It’s a welcoming sight anytime he’s sporting a jersey.

11. Loving the Red Wings, no matter what
We can move halfway across the world and we'll still sport our Yzerman sweater. Also the average Detroiter is semi-fluent in Russian just from learning our Konstantinov's and Datsyuk's.

12. Hating Sidney Crosby
Remember that time Howard gloved his face and gave him a good ol’ fashioned face wash? Of course you do. And you're about to watch it seven more times.

13. Beer
For one, we need it. But it doesn't hurt to have fine folks like Atwater, Motor City Brewing, and Detroit Beer Company making it here.

14. Tigers Opening Day
Records were made to be broken, and so that’s what we did this year.

15. Entrepreneurs
It’s a city packed with opportunity and people aren’t just hoping for better times here. They’re making them happen, and the entrepreneurial climate is climbing.

16. Potato chips
Fact: we eat more chips per capita than anywhere else. Particularly if they're Better Made. They pair well with the beer.

17. Vernors
Because you can't ALWAYS wash down those chips and coneys with beer. 

18. Complaining about the weather
All Winter long, you question why you live here. Then, before you know it, there's a 100-degree heatwave. Then it's Winter again. Repeat.

19. Being the underdog
Sometimes it seems like it’s Detroit vs. Everybody. But it’s a challenge to embrace.

20. Living in what is actually Detroit
Not Royal Oak. Not Ferndale. Not Ann Arbor. They're all fine places. They are NOT Detroit.

21. Defending their city
If you haven’t paid us a visit, then you don’t really know what’s going on here, and Detroiters are ready to explain to you that despite all that this place is up against, it’s still an amazing, iconic, indispensable American city.