Where in Michigan? Talk to the Mitten


This summer, I traveled around meeting great people in the Great Lakes State. And I’ve also taken up palm reading as a new hobby.

When you meet a Michigander, one of the first things they will talk about is where they are from. And to do this properly, they will show you on their palm. Their right palm to be exact.

Michiganders proudly refer to their state as the Mitten. So much so that you can buy Michigan Mittens or oven mitts at kitschy and cute tourist shops Up North (yes, it’s capitalized) or like the ones I found on Karin Marie’s “talk to the mitten” Pinterest site.

To demonstrate, I will call upon my lovely assistant and local hand model.

See, we live in the Detroit suburbs, right here:

Image

If you want to vacation on Lake Michigan and swim and sail where the water is warm and mostly calm all summer, go to any town located here, like Bay City, between the thumb and the index finger.

Image

Last week, I went “Up North.” for a quick getaway.  We stayed at a lovely Inn in Leland, on the Leeelanau peninsula. That’s here, in the pinky:

Image

While up in the pinky, we went on a hike in one of the last remaining Cedar forests in North America. On the trail, we met an older woman who lives in the thumb, near Port Huron

Image

We stayed at a wonderful place called the Whale back Inn, named so because the area where it is situated, when viewed from Lake Michigan looks like….

yes, you get it.

The grounds of the Inn overlooked a pristine and inviting lake (of course it did, we are in MICHIGAN!). There, we met native Michiganders now living in Palo Alto, Calif. (I don’t know what body part California looks like.) They have relatives who farm land in the center of the palm, right between the fate and life lines.

Image

Finally, a guy I met in synagogue the other day held up his palm and said he grew up around Benton Harbor, and that’s right here, at the heel of the palm.

Image

All this palm reading and thinking got me thinking about a country famously known for its shape:

Image

If you travel in Italy and converse with Italians, do they locate their cities of origin on “the boot?” Do they point to their knees, heel or toe when asked where they are from?

Or, what about New York, my home state?  Sure, New York has the Big Apple, but what is it shaped like? My best bet, if I had to make a hand shape for New York, it would look like the Vulcan hand salute. Rotated. And reversed.

Image

Or, or, as my hand model –  his hand getting tired from twisting from these poses  and working for me for 20 minutes -said maybe we should just leave the hand symbol for New York at this:

Image

Enhanced by Zemanta

Tags: , , , , , ,

About stacylynngittleman

I have been a public relations professional and reporter -- and always thought I would live in the New York Metro area - before my husband took a job in Rochester, New York. Most in Metro New York can't find Rochester on a map,and neither could I before we moved. I am now a columnist and a freelance writer for Rochester's only daily newspaper, the Democrat & Chronicle. I also am passionate about gardening, fitness and most of all, Jewish education and Israel Advocacy. Here's my perspective on Western New York living - the good, the bad, and the snowy.

7 responses to “Where in Michigan? Talk to the Mitten”

  1. Devoora says :

    Stacy, We just came back from a week on the arm and fist, flexed at the elbow (Cape Cod). We stayed somewhere mid tricep (W. Yarmouth) and did make it to the fist (Provincetown) one day. It was hell getting off the shoulder Sat. morning lol.

  2. campfirememories says :

    Thanks for a fun, clever, and funny read! During the editing process of “Memory Lake”, advance readers from Michigan took me to task for not mentioning the mitten in the first few chapters. So, it is in there!

    • stacylynngittleman says :

      the funny thing is, all these people didn’t even ask if I WANTED to know exactly where they lived. Like a secret society pledge, they just voluntarily opened their palms and started pointing. So funny!

  3. thewordmavens says :

    soo funny!! when i visited Univ of Michigan with my teenager a few weeks ago –the admissions girl asked all Michiganers “what pert of the mitten are u from?” and we were clueless until some responded and they explained the reference. lots of people said it while we were there. In PA we’re just shaped like a brick –I’m lower right-hand corner.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: