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How to Know if You’ve Officially Become an Ann Arbor Local

There is nothing quite like going home for the holidays and reuniting with the people you went to high school. Not much has changed, except maybe everyone’s gained a little weight, is engaged, or *GASP* pregnant. But one thing that stands out when you hit up those dingy bars and house parties with limited parking space is that you have almost nothing in common with these people. You realize the only thing that’s similar is where you’re from, and at this point in your young life, you relate more to an Ann Arbor local than one from your hometown. Here’s the telling hometown signs you really do belong with your Ann Arbor brethren. 

5.) You have nothing in common with your hometown heroes: 
At one point, it would’ve be easy to strike up a conversation with anyone you run into in (insert your hometown here), but now you’re grasping for any topic that will last more than a few minutes. The conversation of high school sports games and the road construction that’s been going on for the past few months is of no use to you now. And it’s not their fault either—you also realize the only things you can talk about are IFC’s suspension, the ass-kicking exams you just took, and Jim Harbaugh.

4.) “Wait…Tina Tuesday? What is that?”— someone from home: 
Tina Tuesday is always a hot topic when you’re away at school. It’s the base of most of your shambly stories and probably your bad grades. When you tell a story about Tina Tuesday and the people around you ask what that means, you know you’re not in Ann Arbor anymore. They don’t understand what “Tina” is, and now they think you’re a borderline alcoholic since those are the only people who drink on Tuesdays in your hometown.

3.) Someone at this party you’re forcing yourself to be at is wearing a ring:
Engaged? Married? Yeah, there are a few of those. You glance down the bar or around the restaurant and notice an abundance of engagement rings. Then, you look at your hand to admire the ring you aren’t wearing. You’re glad these people are happy, and then you think about the three people you hooked up with in a frat basement last weekend and wonder if you’ll ever be able to settle down. Yikes.

2.) Thirty Thursday doesn’t exist at home:
In Ann Arbor, Thursday nights are considered prime time for going out. But at home, Thursdays are just a normal weeknight. If you were to hit up the bars on a Thursday night while home, you wouldn’t because you’re not having a midlife crisis. Living in a college town and going to college will prepare you for a lot in life, but not how to hang out with the locals at home.

1.) Guess who’s pregnant!:
Oh yeah, that couple you graduated with who was voted most likely to get married? Well, they got pregnant first. You wonder how they will be able to take care of a baby when you can barely take care of yourself. In Ann Arbor, you’re either surrounded by hip, young, wealthy parents or drunk college kids doing stupid things in an attempt to make it on Total Frat Move’s Instagram page. Some people grow up faster than others, and whether that’s due to a lack of birth control or general maturity, you’re definitely not the one on a fast track.

Although partying and hanging out with the friends who brought you up is a nice alternative, you’re still ready to return to the beloved University of Michigan in Ann Arbor when the time comes. It’s time you rejoin the locals of Ann Arbor who truly understand you.

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