1. I’ll be able to find good Mexican food in other states.

We have to believe in this falsehood in order to stay sane, but in reality life outside Texas is really just one endless boring meal of sub-standard Mexican food, which never meets San Antonio standards.

2. I won’t tell people I’m from Texas.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m a proud Texan. However, there are still times I don’t feel like dealing with people’s stereotypes and misconceptions, and with no accent or lone star tattoos it would be difficult to mark me as a Texan without admitting it. Of course, this doesn’t work in practice, because saying we’re from New York or Florida sounds like the ultimate betrayal of our noble heritage.

3. I won’t make friends with other Texans just because they’re from Texas.

Yes… yes you will. Even if they’re from Midland and you grew up in Tyler. Even if they like carrying a gun at all times and you would rather save it for special occasions. We’re all Texans through and through, and it’s impossible to shake that bond.

4. I won’t try to sell other people on Texas.

You leave the Lone Star State and find yourself in the middle of the Sahara Desert, or maybe just St. Louis. Either way, there are going to be people around who may have never been tempted to visit the Hill Country, but you’re going to be the one to change their minds. Soon everyone outside of Texas will be telling their friends how there’s no better vacation destination than Oatmeal, Texas.

5. I won’t miss the heat.

There are plenty of Texans who relish their summers, even when they have to take a break, crank up the A/C, and crack open a cold one. Summers are so much a part of my identity as a Texan that when I spent my first temperate, if windy and foggy, June in San Francisco, I knew I’d want to return to Austin for a few months the following year. Any Texan who doesn’t enjoy spending an evening outside sweating in shorts and a T-shirt is no Texan.

6. I definitely won’t return for the holidays.

Okay, your family members are weird and pretty racist… that’s certainly not unique to Texas. You’re leaving for a ski vacation or just don’t want to travel back in December – anything to experience a real winter beyond Texas’ borders with actual snow, mountains, and reasons to enjoy hot beverages. Take it from someone who has had in-laws fall in love with a Christmas in Texas: even though we seldom have a winter wonderland in December, and even though you’re guaranteed to get into a political argument with your uncle, there’s nothing like being home for the holidays.

7. I won’t start looking for the most Texas-like place in other states, countries.

I definitely won’t start thinking of Kagoshima Prefecture as the Texas of Japan. Or seek out the only place in California rumored to have real Texas BBQ. Or start overlaying maps of Texas on Bali just to see how it measures up. I definitely didn’t do any of those things – maybe.

8. I won’t turn my home into an homage to Texas.

There may or may not be a Texas flag hanging above my desk. My laptop wallpaper might be an iconic spot along the border. If only I could find Mason jars out here, I’d be all ready to push sweet tea on my guests.

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