Waco, TX

13 Ways to Make a Texan Mad, Besides Taking Away Their Electricity

Melinda Crow

https://img.particlenews.com/image.php?url=1XCosg_0YdTEQd300Photo by Silje Midtgård on Unsplash

Waco, Texas--It's fun being a Texan travel writer. People love to love Texas, even if they've never been here. Not long before international travel became a thing of the past last year, I had an opportunity to hang out with an international group of journalists. Together each evening over fine Italian food and wine we solved the world's problems. The number one thing we agreed on was a disdain for broad generalizations people make about us and our homes. Avoid that as a traveler, and you are one step ahead of the crowd.

Nobody dislikes being type-cast more than a Texan. We're a friendly bunch as a rule. We laugh at your silly Western-movie concept of us and our state, but there are a handful of things that just rip our shorts. Here's the top 13:

  • Insult our pickup trucks. In some cases, that’s an insult to our occupation; in all cases, it’s an insult to our chosen way of life. Our pickup trucks move man and beast, tools and toys. Chances are very good that the truck you are insulting costs more than whatever car you are driving. Add in the value of the four-horse trailer, the RV, or speed boat it’s towing and the combination may be worth more than your house.
  • Assume we all drive pickup trucks, own horses and cows, or have oil wells in our back yards. Having defended our love affair with the almighty truck, let me say that we don’t all drive them. It’s exactly those kinds of generalizations that get under our skin. We laugh off your ignorance about cows, horses, and the like, but trying to pigeonhole Texans in any way simply makes you look dumb and makes us mad. We don’t all wish GW was still president, we don’t all carry guns, and some of those wells in our yards are gas wells, not oil.
  • Disrespect our law enforcement officers. We have city police (pronounced PO-leece), county sheriffs, state troopers, and the famed Texas Rangers. Our LEO’s are a source of pride in this state. We treat them like heroes. Don’t get me wrong. We have our share of corruption just like the rest of you, but we prefer to handle these things our own way. That’s why we have the Rangers.
  • Come here and complain about the heat, lack of public transportation, and the people you think are dimwits. We’ll be happy to help you find a state to visit that doesn’t mind whiners. Oh but wait, then you’d miss our comfortable winters, our thousands of miles of wide-open spaces crisscrossed by what used to be one of the best highway systems in the country, and the job you’re considering taking at the Space-X test facility in McGregor. Yup, that Elan Musk knows a good set of dimwits when he sees them.
  • Visit only the big cities. The real beauty of the state lives and breathes just beyond Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, and Austin. Hit the road and you’ll find incredible university towns like Lubbock, San Angelo, and College Station. And beach towns like Galveston and Rockport. The smell of barbecue drifts through small towns like Lockhart, Stephenville, and Clifton. And the best steaks in the state hit the grill at Perrini Ranch in tiny Buffalo Gap. We have mountains, waterfalls, lakes, and even lighthouses, but you’ve got to leave the cities in your rearview mirror to see them.
  • Order your steak “black and blue” or “Pittsburgh” style. Seriously people? Trust us. We know how to cook a steak. Been doing it since before there was indoor plumbing. That sort of pre-dates the whole foodie thing, so don’t walk into a Texas steak house and use some term concocted by people who’ve never even seen a cow. Stick with the basics, a medium-rare ribeye, and you may find yourself enjoying the best steak of your life.
https://img.particlenews.com/image.php?url=0S18o7_0YdTEQd300Palo Duro Canyon. Photo by Michael Dziedzic on Unsplash
  • Think there’s nothing worth seeing in the Panhandle. First let me explain what is not obvious to outsiders: the northern-most portion of the state is the rectangular-ish shape bordered by Oklahoma on the north and east and New Mexico on the west. This area is NOT North Texas. It’s the Panhandle. North Texas is Dallas-Fort Worth. Most outsiders give little thought to visiting the Panhandle. But it just so happens that the country’s second-largest canyon (Palo Duro Canyon State Park) is right outside of Amarillo, the city in the center of the Panhandle and very near the midway point of Historic Route 66.
  • Make fun of our accents. Excuse me? We happen to be the second most populous state in the country. Unless you live in California, we outnumber you by more than double in most cases. Doesn’t that mean that y’all are the ones with the accents?
  • Make fun of country music. We might make fun of it ourselves, but don’t think it’s proper for you to join in. You can make fun of Willie Nelson’s pot-smoking antics, but don’t even think about criticizing his music. Make fun of Miranda Lambert, who hails from the tiny town of Lyndale, and you’ll quickly be ushered to the Louisiana border.
  • Assume we all like country music. Let’s revisit the subject of not lumping us into one redneck pile. We aren’t all country music fanatics. We have symphonies, operas, and talented musicians like a young man I know who is close to earning his masters degree his piano studies at the Peabody Conservatory. Those folks in Baltimore know talent when they see it and don’t even care that he’s from the Texas Panhandle.
  • Start a conversation with the biggest Texas headlines that pop into your head. Okay, we’ve had our moments. The Kennedy assassination, David Koresh in Waco, and George W. Bush in the White House may have shaped us, but they do not define us. Trust me when I say that almost any discussion about religion or politics is dangerous territory for an outsider. Our brand of both is far different than what you find in the rest of the country.
  • Assume we all root for the Dallas Cowboys. We actually have two NFL teams, people. Plus three NBA teams, two Major League Baseball teams, and a hockey team, none of which are shabby. Most Texans spend more time rooting for their local high school teams or their college alma mater than the professionals. You remember Friday Night Lights, right? That’s us. Well, some of us at least.
  • Assume that the whole state resembles (or behaves like) Austin. Other than the fact that our elected representatives spend half a year there (but only in odd years), Austin neither resembles us nor represents us. Most of us look at our capital city as a nice place to visit, but wouldn’t live there on a bet. Austin prides itself on being weird and the rest of us are more than happy to let them go on doing exactly that.

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Waco, TX

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