If you’re not from Buffalo, your opinion on chicken wings is invalid.

Don’t argue with your Buffalo friends who say you’re wrong… You are.

First of all, if you aren’t from Buffalo, chicken wings are not called Buffalo wings. They are called either wings or chicken wings. No more and no less.

For us, Buffalonians, we take pride and joy in our creation of the chicken wing. Whether they are BBQ, hot, medium, or mild, don’t get on our wrong side trying to act like a wing virtuoso.

Since school has started and I have made most of my friends from outside of the Buffalo area. I have found myself getting irritated with people who think they know wings like my fellow Buffalonians and I do. The worst is when my friends and I go to Walmart and we pass the dreaded Buffalo Wild Wings. Undeniably, every single time we drive by, someone has to try to start an argument about how good it is. Buffalo Wild Wings does not have real chicken wings! If you’re not from Buffalo and you love Buffalo Wild Wings, you need to find a friend that knows their way around Buffalo, and have them take you to a real wing joint. Once you have real wings, your mind will be changed forever and you’ll never want to go back to Buffalo Wild Wings ever again. I’m serious, leave campus and go find a real wing joint. There are so many: The Anchor Bar, Duff’s, ETS, Jim’s Steakout, 716, The Bar Bill, La Nova, make some chicken wing dip, or you can even buy some Frank’s Hot Sauce and get the feel for Buffalo.

The culture of Buffalo has been growing immensely over the past few years. Millennials are moving downtown into the Elmwood area. Buffalo is appropriated as one of the top 10 hipster towns and has turned into a designated city for tourist attraction. Yes, we have Niagara Falls, about a 25 minute drive from the center of Downtown Buffalo, but tourist websites like TripAdvisor fail to mention the lesser known spots that kids who have spent most of their time in the city know about. Buffalo kids know about the loss of Indulge - an 18+ club, they know about Thursday nights in the summer at Canalside, they know about the Waiting Room’s concerts, some know about Marcella’s shows performed on the weekends, most know about Chippewa, and all know about Jim’s Steakout and Mighty Taco. Indispensable amenities to Buffalonians are Loganberry, sponge candy, winter clothes, beer, the Sabres, and the Bills.

We’re an over eccentric city that cares a little too much about football and certain foods, but we also have an untouchable pride for where we’re from. I see pictures of girls I know from high school repping Buffalo at their colleges in Alabama, Michigan, Chicago, D.C., Virginia, Florida, Ohio, and so many more places. Being from Buffalo gives you this natural ability to make friends anywhere you go. If you’re from Buffalo and you leave the city, the chances of you meeting someone who is also from Buffalo are so high. It seems that being from where we’re from gives us boundless connections to people from all over the United States and even people who live in other countries. That’s why we care so much about where we’re from. We care because we know how important the Buffalo culture is to us.

Spending most of my time downtown, I have found myself having a greater connection to the city, knowing that it’s my home. Only when I started college, did I realize how much I loved the city. I like driving people downtown and taking them to my favorite spots. The new, emerging culture of Buffalo seems to be attracting younger people, and with the growth of the economy downtown, the increase of jobs, and the medical corridor, the city is growing more and more populated. To me, Buffalo will always be home. Buffalo is a huge part of me, it’s where I grew up, and I’m proud to be a part of the city that, as I continue to grow, seems to be growing with me.