A normal friend might panic if they have to drive during an ice or snow storm.
A Minnesota friend rolls down their windows, turns up the music, and “whips a few shitties.” And if they’re really bored, they might pull over and grab their skates out of the trunk to see if they could go faster than the traffic.
A normal friend might not care much about what type of music is on the radio.
A Minnesota friend grew up within driving distance of the First Avenue music scene. They’ve watched Bob Dylan, The Replacements, Prince, Husker Du, and Soul Asylum all ascend to stardom right before their eyes. They know good music when they hear it, and they’d love nothing more than to share it with you.
A normal friend might see a lake and not think twice about it.
A Minnesota friend will see that same lake and go back to get his or her boat, skis, wave runner, canoe, kayak, pontoon and fishing poles. Growing up surrounded by water, there were very little summer pastimes that took place on actual earth. And whatever you do, don’t let them get their hands on a collection of milk cartons. Next thing you know, you’ll be learning to construct boats!
A normal friend will wear actual winter gear during what is considered to be winter weather by a great majority of the world.
Minnesota friends will refuse to wear winter gear until the temperature drops to at least 35 degrees, and then it is only if they are going to be outside for more than an hour at a time. If you were cold, it would not matter how far below freezing the temperature dipped, they would be eerily ecstatic to give you the coat off of their backs, the gloves off of their hands, the hats off of their heads, and a drink from their flask. Odds are, they have a glove box stuffed with actual gloves anyway.
A normal friend would have absolutely no idea what to do with an assortment of leftovers in their fridge.
A Minnesota friend would whip up the most delicious, unrecognizable mystery hot dish you have ever tasted. With a chocolate bar on the side, of course.
A normal friend may have ice skated a handful of times in their life, if at all.
A Minnesota friend knew how to skate before they knew how to walk. And you can be sure they will spray you with ice every chance they get.
A normal friend loves to brag about their state’s professional football team.
This might be one of the only times your Minnesota friend will remain silent.
A normal friend will say goodbye and then leave. The entire event takes a total of one minute.
A Minnesota friend’s goodbye will go something like this:
You: Oh look, it’s 12:30. I’ve gotta be at work by 1. Gonna have to say goodbye, but it was fun! Same time next week?
MF: Okay, see ya! Oh hey – did you happen to catch the Twins game last week? Man, those were some seriously terrible calls.
You: Oh, yea, I heard about that. Okay then, gotta get to work!
MF: Oh, how are ya liking the new job?
You: It’s great, I love it. But I don’t want to be late.
MF: Oh, that’s great news! I’m so happy to hear that. (Gives you a big hug.) You really deserve the best. I couldn’t be happier for you. Ah hey, there’s my coat! What temperature do you think it is out? Do I even need to wear this thing?
You: I don’t know. Why don’t you go outside and check?
MF: Ah, yes, good point, eh! You’ve always been a smart one. Okay, well then, one more hug for prosperity. Have a great day at work. (Hugs for what feels like eternity.)
You: Thanks, and sounds good. See you later.
MF: (While walking to car) Hey, have you talked to Jen lately? I heard she’s getting divorced?! Gosh, that’s so sad!
You: I haven’t. I’ll let you know what I hear-it’s 12:55, I’ve really gotta get changed. (Shutting door.)
MF: Okie dokie-bye! Love you!
15 minutes pass. Phone rings.
MF: I Just miss you so much already! Let’s talk while we’re driving!
A normal friend might approach Halloween eagerly anticipating what that particular year might bring. Perhaps focusing on a new costume idea or scare tactic.
A Minnesota friend will prefer to take you on a journey back in time. Particularly, to the Halloween Blizzard of ’91, when they all still trick-or-treated through a foot of snow during a whiteout.
A normal friend might call you what you are. A friend.
A Minnesota friend will call you family.