After reading a few other journals about "You know you're from "X" city if" I decided to look for one about my own home city. Here's what I found (it's a long one):
You know you're from Buffalo when...
You may be from Buffalo if
You ever bragged about your driving time to Toronto.
You ever crossed the border just to:
buy beer at Brewers Retail, because you think it has more alcohol than what's sold in the US
eat at a Chinese restaurant
attend the "Canadian Ballet"
buy gasoline (in the early 1980s)
buy clogs (in the late 1970s)
You still call most businesses and institutions by names that they were known twenty or more years ago, for instance:
Ralph Wilson Stadium "Rich Stadium"
Dunn Tire Park "North Americare Park" or "Pilot Field"
Quality Markets "Bells," or worse, "Loblaws"
Buffalo State College "State Teacher's"
Daemen College "Rosary Hill"
Medaille College "St. Joe's Teacher's College"
Adelphia Cable "Courier Cable" or "International Cable"
Super Flea "GEX"
Half of your friends moved to Charlotte, North Carolina and the rest went to Raleigh.
You call an apartment a "flat".
You have a favorite Greek "family" restaurant.
Your mother still has an old metal "charge plate" in her purse.
You see apartments listed in the Buffalo News classifieds by church parish and you know where all of them are.
You use the word "the" before the numbers of expressways, like "the 290," "the 90," "the 400" and so on.
Half the change in your pocket is Canadian.
You save Canadian change to use at toll booths and parking meters.
You've held a "waveathon" at four way stop intersections ("No, you go...")
When someone speaks of a "family restaurant," you think of names like "The Olympus," "The Acropolis," and "The Agean," not Denny's.
You can tell what part of town someone is from their accent. Especially dat der Chickatavaga town der, an' de freggin' Wesside.
You ever feasted on these treats:
real chicken wings (not "Buffalo wings")
real beef on weck -- and you call it "beef on wick"
real pizza, with no crust, cut lengthwise into strips
charcoal broiled hot dogs
Niagara Street clams
pierogies, golabkis, kapustas and kielbasa
St Joseph's Day bread
twice baked double cheese potatoes
... and washed it down with:
Genesee Cream Ale, in a 16 ounce bottle ('da pounder)
Visniak or Black Rock pop
You slam on the brakes and slow to a crawl whenever you see the "Village of Kenmore" sign.
You compare ice scrapers with your buddies.
You watch Canadian television, just so you can see United States network shows a day or two earlier than they would appear in the States.
You make only $25,000 a year, but can still afford a nice single family house in the suburbs.
You break out the shades and shorts when the temperature goes higher than 50 for the first time of the year.
You can actually taste the difference between Molson, Labatts and Old Vienna.
Your idea of a seven-course meal is a six pack of Genny Cream Ale and a bucket of wings.
Your pockets are filled with old Metro Rail tickets.
You flinch when you hear the words "wide right!"
You think of a high school, not a cartoon, when you hear references to "South Park."
Your house has a "Florida room" and an above ground swimming pool.
You think driving is better in the winter, because the potholes are filled in with snow.
You think Amherst residents are snobs -- but say you're from there to impress members of the opposite sex.
Your grocery shopping list includes rock salt.
You go "hshhhhhh" whenever a story about a fire or the Bills appears on the news.
You can make coins land perfectly in the toll basket at 20 MPH or higher.
You know what "wind chill factor" and "lake effect snow" means.
You grew up watching The Uncle Bobby Show, The Beachcombers, The King of Kensington, Mister Dressup, The Friendly Giant and Sesame Street in French ("un, deux, trois ...").
You think Halloween lasts for two days.
You think it's perfectly acceptable to take a day off work on:
St. Joseph's Day
St. Patrick's Day
St. Stanislaus Day
the Monday after a Bills victory
You use your garage as the living room during the summer, putting a big screen over where the overhead door would be.
You can recite Metro Rail announcements from memory (Theatre station last stop in the free fare zone - screescreescreescree).
You still go to all the neighborhood and ethnic festivals and "old home days," even though all of them are really the same.
You know more than three women named "Joanne."
Your next door neighbor has a huge sign on their lawn reading "Abortion is Murder."
You know the punchline to the joke "What's the difference between a Canadian and a canoe?"
You ever lived in a one bedroom apartment that had a huge dining room, but a tiny bedroom that could barely hold a twin bed.
You know the lyrics to:
"You Know We're Gonna' Win That Cup"
The Bills "Shout" song
Any song by Rush or Moxy Fruvous
The Canadian national anthem
The "Tops never stops saving you more" jingle
The Sattler's "998 Broadway" jingle, even if you weren't alive when the department store chain was still in business
You ever made up lyrics to go along with the Eyewitness News theme song. ("Way more fires, way more death, Irv's gonna' watch the ... city burn!")
You have gotten into fights over topics like:
Malecki vs Sahlen vs Wardynski vs Shelly vs Redlinski (wieners)
Anchor Bar vs Duff's (chicken wings)
Bocce Club vs Leonardi's (pizza)
Tops vs Wegmans (supermarkets)
the fastest way to drive to Washington, DC
You watch reruns of the Paul McGuire Show on the Empire Sports Network in May.
You move to Charlotte, and you get a satellite dish just to watch the Empire Sports Network.
You have seen all the real TV shows SCTV sketches are based on.
You know SCTV material as well as, if not better than, Monty Python sketches.
You go to Niagara Falls for the outlet shopping and the Italian food, not the Falls itself.
You spend hours planning drives to avoid toll booths.
You think the characters on the Saturday Night Live "Da' Bears" skits eat lightly.
Your snowblower has more horsepower than your car -- and you use it about as often.
You ever sarchastically said "Fun? Wow!"
Your personal ad in the Buffalo News mentions preferences such as "Polish," "Italian" or "Irish."
One of your friends claims to have gone to McKinley High School with a Goo Goo Doll, or Performing Arts with Ani DiFranco.
You can identify neighborhoods by smell alone.
You think "Lesbos" is yet another new Greek family restaurant on Elmwood Avenue.
You have more than one shovel in your garage.
You consider a drive that is more than 25 minutes excruciatingly long.
Your car has more rust than exposed paint.
You stocked up on Malecki hot dogs after you heard the company was going out of business.
You have ever gotten a speeding ticket on the Youngmann Expressway ("Da' Tooninney") -- but still drive insanely fast on it.
You move to Charlotte, and say the following to your new friends:
"back home, ya'cud get a case of Labatts fer twelve bucks!"
"back home, ya'cud get a house like this fer only 80K!"
"back home, ya'cud get a large cheese and pepperoni pizza fer seven bucks!"
"back home, da' bars close at four in da' morning!"
"you call dis snow?"
"you call dis cold?"
"you call dis a supermarket?"
"you call dese wings?"
"you call dis pizza?"
"you call dis Italian food?"
"you call dese taxes high?"
"you call dese gas prices high?"
"they're closing the schools for dis?"
"no, I didn't ferget ta' wash my face -- aincha' ever heard of Ash Wednesday?"
You have never been to New York City.
You ever lived at a place where the address included "upper," "lower," "front" or "rear."
You take real chicken wings, hot dogs and pizza back down to Charlotte after a visit home to Buffalo.
You add an apostrophe-s to the names of most businesses - Blockbuster's, Rite Aid's, Olive Garden's (not that you would eat there), Wal-Mart's, Target's, and so on.
You don't let a blinding snowstorm stop you from driving 70 MPH down the Kensington during rush hour.
You hate Genesee Cream Ale, but somehow begin to crave it after you move to Charlotte.
You never put away the winter clothes.
You ever used a hairdryer to get into your car.
You ever fell asleep waiting for the light to change at the intersection of Niagara Falls Boulevard and Sheridan Drive.
You live on a street that:
changes names at every block
has a very "ethnic" sounding name
isn't plowed until spring
is bumpier than a jeep trail in the high Rockies
You think the idea of "California pizza" is as sacrilegious as cheering on the Miami Dolphins.
You ever lived in a house or apartment where the bedrooms and bathroom are directly off the kitchen.
You watch the Bills on TV with the sound turned down, and the radio turned to the game.
Your car ever appeared to be salt white.
You ask the person who does the weather on the 11:00 PM Sunday broadcast of the Channel 2 news for their autograph when you spot him/her in the mall.
You think that, when the traffic light turns from yellow to red, it means "make a really, really fast left hand turn."
You ever said "not ninety-nine cents, not eighty-nine cents, but only FIFTY-NINE cents!" when referring to the price of an object.
The most prized item in your wardrobe is an early 1980's era "97 Rock" T-shirt -- black, with the original logo.
You ever painted your car or house in red, white and blue.
Your idea of "doin' donuts" doesn't involve the glazed ones with sprinkles, but rather a rear wheel drive vehicle and a shopping mall parking lot.
You still smoke.
You can accurately judge the social status of someone by the first two digits of their telephone number.
You have your doubts about the authenticity of the TV comedy "Jesse," because:
the last roadworthy VW Bug in Buffalo rusted away in 1979
they just don't breed 'em like Christina Applegate in Buffalo
you don't hear Buffalo accents, even though the show supposedly takes place in a blue collar neighborhood
you wonder "where's all da' healthy women?"
you know Jesse wouldn't be living at the corner of Lisbon Avenue and Suffolk Avenue, considering that the Kensington neighborhood "turned, if you know what I mean" several years ago
You would consider voting for a tax increase to pay for Rich Stadium improvements, but you complain loudly about "all my hard earned dollars" funding such luxuries as the library system, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Buffalo Museum of Science.
You know, because you heard it from your mother-in-law and she heard it from her best friend who heard it from her son who heard it from his barber who heard it from a friend:
the real reason Jim Kelly's son was born with a tragic birth defect
the real reason Ted Nolan won't be coaching the Sabres again
the real reason the Bills traded Daryle Lamonica
the real reason Premiere Gourmet went belly-up in Williamsville.
You know which West Side pizzeria is a repurted Mafia front.
Rosie O'Donnell really doesn't seem fat to you.
You ask "so, what are ya?" or "so, what is that?" when someone tells you their last name.
You don't get a coughing fit from one sip of Vernor's.
You know what Vernor's is.
You think a 150,000 square foot supermarket is small.
You live within walking distance of a bowling alley.
Your baby's first words are "Go Bills!"
You have an aftermarket vinyl roof installed on your new car.
You never take the snow tires off your car.
You ever were the victim of the "Genny screamers" or the "Labatts splats."
You got frost bitten and sunburned in the same weekend.
You think "STOP," "SLOW" and "YIELD" signs are just suggestions.
You think that, when the traffic light turns from yellow to red, it means "make a really, really fast left hand turn."
You see nothing wrong with watching fireworks downtown on July 2nd.
You experience culture shock in Rochester.
You give directions using long-closed or renamed restaurants and stores as landmarks.
You leave your ski lift tickets on your jacket year round.
You still have old AM&As, Hengerer's, Hens & Kelly, LL Berger, Kleinhans, The Sample and Jenss gift boxes saved up for wrapping Christmas presents.
You keep the snowplow on the front of the truck year round.
You have a "winter car."
You bake with soda and drink pop.
You eat orange chocolate.
You immediately change the channel when you hear the dreaded words "Hi! this is Goldie Gardner ..."
You remember the date, severity, time of day, where you were, and how long you were without power and phone service for every winter weather event in the last five years.
You think you're getting an incredible bargain if you're paying "only" $3000 a year in property tax on a $100,000 house.
You know more people who own boats than people who own air conditioners.
You have the phone numbers to more than five pizzerias on speed dial.
You think downtown is "scary" because you were panhandled there once.
Your ever lived in a house that was surfaced in "ghetto brick" or tarpaper shingles.
You have ever been beaten with a pussy willow.
You hang beer cans on your Christmas tree.
You ever lived within walking distance of at least three Catholic churches.
You can easily spell and pronounce last names like Wojciechowski, Ricigliano, and Callaghan.
You apologize for Niagara Falls, New York when you take out-of-town visitors to Niagara Falls, Ontario.
Your parents ever threatened to send you to "Father Baker's."
You call the Erie County Fair "da' Hamburg Fair."
You think the wrong newspaper folded in the 1980s.
You think you're paying outrageously high taxes to subsidize the New York City subway system.
You think you're paying outrageously high electricity bills to subsidize cheap electricity in New York City.
You think you're still paying tolls on the Thruway to subsidize repairs to expressways in New York City.
You think you're paying 8% sales tax to subsidize welfare mothers in New York City.
You ever played "armchair urban planner" by saying "all of Buffalo's problems would be solved if Main Street was reopened to cars."
You watched the Friday night movie on Channel 25 when you were a teenager -- thinking that it was porn because it was in French, and you saw the occasional nipple.
You have ever taken a date to a Chinese auction.
You ever thought Frank Sinatra land banked property in Niagara Falls, with the intent of building a casino if/when gambling was made legal there.
You got a DBS dish after you moved to Charlotte, just so you could still watch the Empire Sports Network.
You have ever been shocked when you visited another city because:
you thought everyplace was 90% Catholic
you hardly ever heard a Polish or Italain surname
you couldn't get a fish fry -- and the waitstaff had no idea what you were talking about
all the pizzerias were chains
all the restaurants seemed a bit too "fancy"
the bars close "so early," at 2:00 AM
you saw houses for sale with six digit price tags
everything seemed so clean compared to "back home"
everyone seemed so thin compared to "back home"
you saw no cars with rust
so many people were driving foreign cars and SUVs
there wasn't a Tops or Wegmans
You still have your "Whammy Weenie."
The surname "Muffoletto" really doesn't sound funny to you.
You still have your "We're Talking Proud!" button.
You love the Genesee Cream Ale sign in Brice Springsteen's "Dancing in the Dark" video
You found yourself amazed when you find out that Vermont and New York State share a long border.
You were more amazed when you found out that Quebec borders New York State.
You think that Canada lies west, not north of the United States.
You threw a party when you found out Buffalo was keeping the 716 area code.
You think Wegman's started off in Buffalo, and later expanded to Rochester.
You think the best thing that can happen on the job is "disability."
You think mullets and feathered hair are still in.
You believe that you'll never go bald if you get a haircut on Good Friday.
You've got an "SPCA brown dog" -- a German Shepherd mix, Doberman Pinscher mix or Rottweiler mix.
You consider a marriage between parishoners of two different Catholicchurches to be a mixed marriage.
You complain more when the temperature rises above 90 than when it falls below zero.
You think the Buffalo area economy is starting to turn around, because the call center is hiring ten more telemarketers.
You feel guilty when you throw away cans and bottles when you're in another state.
You think bumper skiing should be made into an Olympic sport.
You don't leave home without your "Entertainment" coupon book.
You think J.C. Penny's is relatively upscale.
You are still in your 20s or 30s, but seriously considering the purchase of a new Buick or Oldsmobile.
You think nothing of Bills and Sabres pre-game and post-game shows that are much longer than the game itself.
You got really excited on your 19th birthday.
You know who Mr. Mitsubishi is.
At some time, there was a forklift in your life.
Listening to: nothing