Thou shalt not serve a Bloody Mary without a beer chaser.

Or an asparagus spear, a pickle, cheese curds, celery, a pepperoni stick, a slider or two and about half the appetizer menu crammed onto toothpicks because Wisconsin. One bar even serves theirs with an entire fried chicken.

Thou shalt not besmirch the Green and Gold.

I’ve never been much of a sports fan, so it’s taken some time to get used to all conversation attempts between the months of September and February being drowned out by an entire state screaming “Go Pack Go!”

When driving across the state, thou shalt struggle to pronounce most town and city names.

Trempealeau? Oconomowhatnow? Green Bay? All the while she’s choking on her own smug laughter.

Thou shalt share her excitement when she sees a cow

Because they’re just so darn CUTE!! Especially Holsteins and Jerseys!

Thou shalt recognize the first day of hunting season as a sacred holiday, even if neither of you are hunters.

Apparently, Wisconsin’s state color is camouflage and the state bird is buckshot.

Thou shalt rejoice in the miracle that is Culver’s.

I don’t eat fast food, but I will smash a Cheddar ButterBurger with Bacon, some deep fried cheese curds and frozen custard without a second thought. I even tried In-N-Out Burger for the first time in January but it just couldn’t stand up to Culver’s.

Thou shalt not take Aaron Rodgers’ name in vain.

MVP! MVP! (Brett Favre on the other hand…)

Thou shalt watch the Superbowl regardless of cost, time zone, or country you’re currently residing in.

In 2014, a few months after we moved to Tokyo, my girlfriend kidnapped me and brought me to a bar in Roppongi that charged $20 prepaid ticket holders an additional $10 per head at the door. The “organizers” of this “All You Can Drink International Super Bowl Party” then proceeded to fill the bar to twice capacity, run out of beer AND charge for other drinks. It was almost like standing in a stalled train full of drunks shouting “DEFENSE, DEFENSE!” (Sidenote: the Packers weren’t even playing in the Super Bowl that year.)

Thou shalt accept Packer, Badger, and Brewer attire as perfectly reasonable formal wear.

It was your fault for booking reservations on a Game Day, stupid.

Thou shalt not laugh at her and her family’s accent or colloquialisms.

“C’mon honey, say ‘Bag’ again!”
“’Stop and what’ lights?”

Thou shalt have no other cheese before Wisconsin Cheese.

It seriously does not get any better, folks. On my first visit she took me to the Broken Yolk (now closed ☹) in Milwaukee. I have never had better pepper jack on my buffalo chicken sandwich. Ever. The Broken Yolk also featured an omelet with 11 DIFFERENT kinds of WISCONSIN cheese.

Thou shalt not act confused when summer comes and everyone is talking about going “Up North.”

As it’s been described to me, “Up North” or “Up Nort” is a paradise that exists in the minds of all ‘Sconnies. The phrase conjures up a universal image of a cabin, usually next to a lake or river and always close to a dive bar that does a good fish fry.

Thou shalt only eat fish fry on Friday.

Any other night would be sacrilege.

Thou shalt eat “hot dish.”

“And you better damn well like it! I don’t care if casserole ‘isn’t your thing!’”

Thou shalt serve ranch dressing with everything.

Experiencing shortness of breath? Pain in the chest and shoulders? Some cheese curds and ranch’ll clear that right up.

Thou shalt imbibe the local suds.

I’m originally from the Northwest, so beer is a pretty big deal. Wisconsin definitely holds it down on the beer front though. Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy and New Glarus’ Spotted Cow are two of my go-to’s when I’m visiting.