* Your state pays a bounty for killing the state mascot.
* You consider a six-inch snowfall a blessing for the cities because It provides instant urban renewal.
* You consider it a sport to gather your food by drilling through 18 inches of ice and sitting there all day hoping the food will swim by.
* You keep the snow tires on your truck all year because it isn't worth taking them off for only two months.
* You believe that rushing out on the lakes with your pick-up in November is nature's way of upgrading the state's gene pool.
* You have a town with men foolish enough to play a tackle football snow bowl game on the Sunday after Christmas for 37 years in a row.
* You have friends who schedule their wedding in the middle of January without a thought about weather conditions.
* You are proud that your state makes the national news 96 nights each year because International Falls is the coldest spot in the nation.
* You think a basketball team consists of twelve white boys.
* All your kids at school are above average.
* All your women are strong.
* You don't understand why everyone thinks Garrison Keillor is so funny.
* You KNOW there is no such place as Lake Wobegone, but you have drunk St. Wendell's beer.
* You like to come in out of the sun when the temperature gets above 72.
* You instinctively walk like a penguin for three months out of the year.
* Someone in a store offers you assistance, and they don't work there.
* Your Dad's sun tan stops at a line curving around the middle of his forehead.
* You have ever apologized to a telemarketer.
* You believe that REAL vehicles have skis in front and a loud motor under your seat.
* You have a nickname for your chain saw and you pat it on the fuel tank at the end of a hard day's sawing.
* You may not have actually eaten it, but you have heard of Lutefisk.
* You like the Winter Olympics better than the Summer Olympics.
* You beam with pride when some King or Hollywood super star comes to The Mayo Clinic to save their lives.
* You consider snow banks to be just another rough on the golf course.
* You have no "spring" sports season.
* You have ever worn shorts and a parka at the same time.
* You were delighted to get a miniature snow shovel for your 3rd birthday.
* Your birthday was in April, and you still got to use the shovel right away.
* Your town has an equal number of bars and churches.
* You go to a high school basketball game, the score is 12-8 at halftime, and you don't think there's anything strange about that.
* You have ever had an entire telephone conversation with someone who dialed a wrong number.
* You know how to say Wayzata, Mahtomedi, and Shakopee.
* You think that ketchup is a little too spicy.
* You support the preservation of forests, farmland and wetlands because that's where you hunt deer, pheasants and geese.
* You think it's best to eat Jell-O after it's molded.
* You consider Lime Jell-O a highly versatile food: a breakfast dish when it is filled with fruit, a salad when it has shredded carrots and dab of mayonnaise, and a dessert when topped with dream whip.
* You voted for Mondale.
* You never had to rewind any part of "Fargo" because you missed some of the dialogue.
* Your town isn't trying to be ironic when it plans "winter carnival".
* You always believed that vacation meant "going up north"
* Your bank has the name of your town included in its name.
* Your town has an annual festival honoring a fruit, vegetable ethnic food.
* You know where the "iron range" is.
* The temperature in March is above freezing for three days in a row, and you think it's summer.
* You laugh out loud every time you see a news report about a blizzard shutting down the entire East Coast.
* You understand, and can explain, illegal defense, the infield fly rule, and icing.
* The first time you saw "Grumpy Old Men" you thought it was a documentary.
* You think that "UFF DA" is a Standard English phrase.
* Your favorite sport when it's cold outside is played where it's cold inside.
* You can recite, from memory, more than a half-dozen "Ole and Lena"jokes.
* You know people named Ole and Lena.
* You thank God every morning for not making you an Iowan.
* You believe that bitter cold, a slippery surface, and speed go together in a sport and on the Interstate freeway.
* You hear that the stock market is up and you think the price of hogs has gained 50 cents per hundred in weight.
* You think of SPAM as a quality, all-purpose meat product whether served with eggs for breakfast, in a sandwich at noontime, or in a hot-dish for supper.
* Every time you see moonlight on a lake you think of a dancing bear, and sing, gently, "From the land of sky-blue water, Hamm's, the beer refreshing. Hamm's, the beer refreshing."
* You remember the thrill of going to the top of the Foshay Tower.
* Your dog dies, your spouse leaves you, you lose your job, and your car breaks down, all on the same day, and the first thought that comes to your mind is, "It could be worse."
Sadly, though this is meant to be humorous, a significant portion of this list applies to me and thousands of other Minnesotans.
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