WA-List » This may confuse you, but I’m from Washington

This may confuse you, but I’m from Washington

Published by Steve Campion. Category: HA! List

HA! List

There’s a little ritual that takes place whenever someone from the evergreen state travels back east.  It’s a conversation that’s best to get out of the way as soon as possible.

So much news and culture takes place in New York City and Washington, DC that geography doesn’t much matter beyond the noisy echo chamber of West 57th or the Beltway. Sure, Los Angeles exists — somewhere out west.  It’s on TV all the time.  But other than LA, the country is just Texas, Colorado, and two or three Dakotas.  Still, when someone back east asks you where you’re from, it must be easy to answer “Montana” or “Denver” or “Utah.”  If you’re from Washington State, though, there’s no avoiding the follow-up questions.  Here is the Washingtonian’s side of that conversation.

HOW WE ANSWER THE QUESTION “WHERE ARE YOU FROM?”

  1. I’m from Washington.
  2. No, the state.
  3. Yes, there is!  It’s on the west coast.
  4. Well, it’s near California. Not in it.  You’ve heard of Seattle, haven’t you?
  5. You’re almost right, but Seattle is in Washington — not the other way around.
  6. Well, besides Seattle, there’s Spokane, Tacoma, Vancouver, …
  7. No, I’m not Canadian.  I meant Vancouver, Washington.  It’s on the Columbia.
  8. Not the District of Columbia.  I’m talking about the river.
  9. And we also have the Cascades, the Olympics…
  10. No, those Olympics were in Vancouver, Canada.
  11. Yep.  Now that you mention it, I’m sorry you asked, too.


By the way, this is my first HA! List.  I hope to write many more, but I can’t take credit for the perfect name for the genre.  A friend of mine came up with “HA! List” to announce the less serious posts among my WA-Lists.

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One Response to “This may confuse you, but I’m from Washington”

  1. Joan Says:

    How true and it happens on the phone as well as in person back East.