10 Stereotypes Of Vermonters

10 Stereotypes Of Vermonters

Don't ask for fake maple syrup unless you want to get thrown out into the snow.
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Vermont is a unique state that has developed very specific stereotypes over the years. Some say we are basically Canada, others say: “Vermont? Where in New York is that?” Despite our small size, Vermont has a lot of heart and is full of stubborn, lovable, passionate people. The stereotypes often associated with our state vary in their accuracy, and here is a list of the most popular ones.

1. Worship Bernie Sanders.

We certainly love our senator who is running for president right now, but not everyone who lives here is a diehard liberal “feeling the bern.” Bernie followers tend to be louder and more public about their support, while Republican Vermonters keep more to themselves about political views. For those of us who love Bernie, we are so proud of the messages he is spreading and feel as though our voices are finally being heard. It's exciting and we are not afraid to show our support.

2. Real maple syrup or no maple syrup.

Maple syrup is a staple in the majority of Vermonters’ lives. Any stereotype about how much we love our syrup tends to be accurate. I’ve visited many sugar houses and refuse to even look at the fake, watery syrup on grocery shelves next to my beloved Grade B Vermont maple syrup. You can put it on anything: pancakes, oatmeal, peanut butter sandwiches, barbecue, snow, and more. The possibilities are endless.

3. Hippies.

If by hippies, you mean we are calm, open people who just want peace for the world, then yes we are hippies. If by hippies, you mean we smoke marijuana, wear peace sign glasses, and listen to vinyl records, then yes some of us are hippies. If the worst generalization you can make about us is we are the type of people who put flowers in guns or use recycled bottles to create indoor gardens, we will accept that and are probably already doing it.

4. Hate outsiders.

In general, I find that outsiders either experience the kind, welcoming Vermonter or the rough Vermonter who hates tourists. Both of these views are true depending on the situation. Vermonters don’t particularly like when flatlanders are driving 10 miles per hour down the road to stare at our mountains, but if we see you in a store trying to figure out a map we will certainly stop to help. Every state will have friendly and mean people, it just depends on who you run into on a given day.

5. Friends with cows.

It’s true that you can start at almost any house in Vermont, drive a couple miles, and come across a field of cows munching on some grass. Not everyone gets up close and personal with those cows, but a love of animals is present in most Vermonters’ hearts. Cows are just so goofy and sweet, so how can you not love them?

6. Indifferent to the cold.

This stereotype is both true and untrue. A lot of Vermonters take pleasure in proving their ruggedness by wearing minimal clothing and criticizing those who think it’s a bit chilly outside. Then there are the more sane Vermonters, who know when the time has come to put on a parka and scarf. We still probably won’t point out the cold though because then everyone would just be complaining constantly for five months and nothing would get done.

7. Wear lots of flannel.


This varies a lot based on each person’s fashion choices, but I find that most people I know at least own a flannel, if not wear it frequently. The Vermont Flannel Company has everything from blankets to thongs, so it is hard to resist buying some of that warm material for the harsh winter months.

8. Only drink craft beer.

Brewing craft beer would be Vermont’s hobby if the state were a person. There are many people who make a living out of it, and they take pride in their work. Heady Topper is particularly popular and can be hard to get your hands on. The brewing company responsible for it, the Alchemist, releases it in waves and as soon as it reaches stores Vermonters go crazy buying it all. If you want the Vermont beer experience without all the hassle, I would recommend grabbing some Long Trails or a Switchback and relax as everyone else scrambles to purchase the last six-pack of their favorite microbrew.

9. See moose every day in the backyard.

It’s true that wildlife pops up everywhere in Vermont. I see a lot of foxes, rabbits, deer, and raccoons around my house, but moose are actually fairly rare. I’ve lived in Vermont for 20 years and have yet to spot one, but on the other hand my friend watched a moose chase her dog down the street one time. It depends on how lucky you get and where in the state you live. Don’t worry, her dog made it home safely.

10. Eat only Ben & Jerry’s and cheese.

This is spot on and don’t you for a second think we eat anything other than Cherry Garcia and Cabot Cheddar Extra Sharp.

I think it is safe to say most Vermont stereotypes are accurate. We are very clear on our opinions of maple syrup and winter. I love my state and hope that tourists and visitors can truly appreciate all we have to offer. Don’t underestimate us because of our size. Someday we will take over the world, and when that day comes we will live on a peaceful, sustainable planet. Until then, we will be up here in the northeast hanging out with Canada and trying to convince New Hampshire to merge into one big Super Vermont.

Cover Image Credit: http://www.cheapmovingcompanies.co/vermont/

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Stop Saying 'Love Is Love' And Then Shame Me For Dating A Republican

"How can you date a Republican?!" Quite easily, actually.

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"And love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love." Other theater geeks like me probably also remember this quote from Lin-Manuel Miranda's Tony acceptance speech in 2016. Now, thanks to Lin-Manuel and his talent for catchy phrases, every time someone says "love is love," all I can think of is Lin-Manuel's emphatic cry for equality.

This cry is one that I support wholeheartedly. I think that you should be allowed to love whomever you choose and that you should do so without fear of hatred or scrutiny. If you are a guy who loves guys, great. If you are a girl who loves girls, great. If you are a girl who loves guys and girls, great. You are born a certain way with certain sexual preferences, and there is nothing wrong with that.

However, if you believe that people should be free to love anyone they choose, then, honey, you better start looking past gender.

Let me tell you a little story.

Recently, I had a conversation with one of my closest friends about my boyfriend of almost 11 months. Somehow (and I'm shocked that this hadn't come up before), my boyfriend's political preferences became the topic of conversation.

The conversation went something like this:

"Wait, so is Tom a Democrat or Republican?"

"He's a Republican."

"WHAT?! Are you serious?"

"Yep."

"How can you date a Republican?"

After that, I basically went on a five-minute rant about how at the end of the day, his political preferences only make up a small fraction of who he is as a person and that I am not so shallow that I would be deterred by something this trivial.

At our cores, Tom and I value the exact same things: compassion, knowledge, kindness, dedication, honesty, respect, and above all else, love. Tom loves me unconditionally and I give him that same love in return; honestly, what else could I ask for?

Tom and I do get in some political arguments from time to time, but we also agree on those issues that are most important to me: female reproductive rights, marriage equality, and support for survivors of sexual assault. All of those things are non-negotiables for me, and Tom understands that and possesses his own list of non-negotiables.

Before you ask, yep, he voted for Trump. Did that take me back at first? Yes. Did I struggle to understand what would compel a person to vote for him? Absolutely. Did that thought kind of terrify me at first? Hell yes.

But you know what? After I just sat and listened to Tom's reasoning as to why he voted for him and watched him delve deep into Trump's policies, I could understand why some would vote for him. And to tell the truth, once I fell in love with Tom, none of that mattered anymore. And what is sad is that people so often fall so deep into their own echo chambers nowadays, that they wouldn't even give someone with different beliefs their ear. Well, I'm damn glad I did because Tom is the most amazing person I've ever met and I fall more in love with him every day.

So to tie this all together with a pretty little bow, if you're going to go around and preach that love is love and that everyone should be free to love whom they choose, then that shouldn't change for me. Maybe you're a Democrat that would never date a Republican or maybe you're a Republican who would never date a Democrat; that's your choice. But we don't get to choose who we fall in love with (much to the dismay of my liberal family and friends). Just keep an open mind and who knows? Maybe you could find some absolutely epic happiness.

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I'm Not Voting, And Guess What, That Is OK

To all of the recent political endorsements by celebrities and Facebook posts telling me I should register to vote, I'm not voting.

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I am not the type of person to normally ever write a Facebook post related to politics, yet here I am dedicating a whole article to it. Or rather about voting itself, not my political affiliation. For the most part, I like to keep my political outlooks to myself instead of broadcasting them to all of my friends, family, coworkers, and that handful of people I do not actually know but I accepted their friend request anyway. Instead, I grace this group of people with animal videos because it doesn't cause any friction, the videos are always light-hearted, and there are already so many other people posting about the next election.

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Quite frankly, I do not identify as a liberal democrat or conservative republican so I should not be subjected to vote for either. I choose not to vote because I do not support either side of the political spectrum and I do not think any of the candidates are true to what I want in the future of my country. There are some ideas I like from Democrats as well as some ideas I like from Republicans, but because of the political climate in recent years, the political parties are becoming more polarized than ever with their ideas, and instead of seeking a moderate stance, are becoming more extreme. I understand that voting is seen as a civic responsibility that comes with being a U.S. citizen, but I have the right to vote not the obligation to vote, and people should respect that decision.

Can you imagine amending the constitution to include penalties for not voting? Where is the democracy in forcing citizens to the ballots via scare tactics? I just do not want to be forced into voting or supporting something that I do not believe in. I will vote when there is a candidate that earns my vote and that I support instead of voting just to vote.

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