Cover Story

You Know You're From Lafayette If ...

When it comes to defending our turf, Lafayette never backs down from a challenge. Whether it’s our indigenous food or music or celebrating our favorite local people and places, we’ll extoll the virtues of living in Lafayette to anyone within earshot, and we’ll talk ’til we’re blue in the face.

All the things that make us unique led The Independent Weekly staff on a quest with a simple premise: complete the sentence, “You know you’re from Lafayette if ...” And when we also put that call out on, you wrote in with your favorite answers, too.

So, without further ado, here’s the best of the best.

You know you're from Lafayette if ...

You don’t think it’s unusual to take 50 years to plan and build a bridge.

Your conversations are punctuated with local first-name-only references: Dud, Clifton, LeeBob, Blue, Boozoo, Darla, Elemore, Sonny, Hoyt, Zachary ... .

You have Hadacol memorabilia in your house.

You or someone in your family has a camp at Cypremort Point, Butte Larose or Toledo Bend.

You know swamp pop isn’t a soft drink or an ice cream made by Shrek.

You take half of the week off of work at the end of April for Festival International de Louisiane.

You think “Festival” is a federal holiday.

You hope you have a long wait before being seated for dinner at La Fonda.

You remember you went to eat at La Fonda last night, but that’s all you remember.

Whenever you hear the name Don Briggs, your first thought is of a steak smothered in processed cheese.

You spread out your beach towel on the Destin sand and look around to see your neighbors on both sides of you.

Your parents come to visit you in either New York City or Los Angeles and they bring Zapp’s Potato Chips. (Or their own Mello Joy or Community Coffee, ’cause you know it’s impossible to get a great cup of coffee in either one of these cities.)

You regard any food labeled as “Cajun” outside of Acadiana with automatic suspicion.

You think Everclear is a primary ingredient in a margarita.

You enter a debate on whether Pizza Village or Deano’s serves the best pizza.

You give directions to a visitor and have to explain that the three different street names you gave are all for the same roadway.

You think the Blue Moon is the center of the universe.

Despite your better judgment, you still order the Cajun Executioner.

You think Holly Beach is a real beach.

You tell someone to catch you that pitcher of water.

You can identify people not from here by the way they pronounce “Lafayette.”

You end every sentence with “at.”

You still crave hamburgers from Burger Tyme and Mr. Cook.

You leave your home near Kaliste Saloom Road at 8 a.m. and hit I -10 at 10:50 a.m.

You know how to spell and pronounce Kaliste Saloom, Feu Follet, Atchafalaya, Authement, Caillier, Verot, Breaux, DeRouen and Hebert.

You saw a young Sonny Landreth at the Stump Gallery.

You remember going to Red’s when it was on Johnston Street.

You hung out at the Swingin’ Machine or the Peaceful Village.

You know where Little Abbeville was located on the USL campus.

You ever saw Clifton Chenier at the Blue Angel.

You ever cashed a check at Pinhook Food Mart.

You called your banker and got an immediate loan over the phone, and then passed by several days later to sign the paperwork.

You remember Mavis from the original location of Dwyer’s.

While having lunch with friends, the main topic of conversation is what everyone ate for dinner last night and what they will be eating for dinner tonight.

At least three of your friends have nicknames and a funny story to explain why.

You take a right, then another right, then another right, in order to make a left turn.

An oilfield worker insults you when you complain about the high cost of gasoline.

You visit Baton Rouge for some ball games, but live in Lafayette for what really matters.

You live by the three Fs — food, friends, festival.

You’ve ever had a fist fight over who makes the best boudin in town.

You respect a man who can two-step and cook a gumbo.

You think “ayeee” is French for: 1) hey y’all, watch this!  2) food ... hot! hot!  3) Roddy Romero is on stage.

You ever entered a casino and asked for directions to the Bourré table.

Your sentences begin with “I” and ends with “me.”

Your name is T-Boy or Boo.

Your grandparents are Big Mom, Big Momma, Popie or Pop, and your brother/sister/aunt/uncle is Parrain/Nanny.

You call every brand of hot sauce Tabasco.

You think Catholic churches work like Blockbuster; there’s one for every 10-minute drive.

You remember that the Randol’s dancing show came on after Soul Train on KADN.

You say “ma sha,” “ma la” or “bien fou.”

You remember Skater’s Playground.

You put your potato salad in your gumbo and think everyone around the world has a crawfish boil on Good Friday.

You are disappointed by the scarcity of beautiful women when visiting other parts of the country.

You drive in all the cardinal directions to get to a point three miles away.

While driving through your neighborhood, you see a chicken cross the road.

You know The Basin is more than just a sink.

You use the turning lane on Johnston Street as your own personal express lane.

The combination of the words “safe” and “speed” give you a headache.

When it comes to Judice Inn, you order a fried egg on your hamburger; you know that on Saturdays you can’t order the fried egg; and you know not to ever ask for french fries.

You’ve gotten a speeding ticket at the corner of Simcoe and University.

Your idea of eating healthy is to skip the round steak but not the rice and gravy.

Your idea of working late on Friday means that you actually return to the office after lunch.

The first order of business on Saturday mornings is to tune into KRVS for zydeco with JB and MC.

The second order of business on Saturday morning is figuring out where to buy boudin and cracklins for breakfast.

You’ve ever rooted for the IceGators, Swamp Cats or the Roughnecks.

You use the words “barbecue sauce” interchangeably with “Jack Miller’s.”

Whenever you hear of “The King,” you don’t think of Elvis Presley, but of Clifton Chenier.

You don’t think it’s ironic that there’s a health food store in The Oil Center.

When giving directions, you pose the question: “Do you remember where the (fill in the blank) used to be?”

You wish that Warren J. “Puggy” Moity would return to the local airwaves.

You’ve phoned into a call-in show on Acadiana Open Channel — more than once.

You think that all universities have a lake full of alligators.

You know what White Night at the Bon Ton was.

You expect the buffet to be all-you-can-eat.

Your idea of adding onto your house is to wall-in your carport.

You feel sorry for people who live in Baton Rouge and Lake Charles.

You think anyone from north of Ville Platte is a Yankee.

You can’t imagine a kitchen without a rice cooker.

You still can’t believe that Abdalla’s closed.

You’ve ever rubbed whiskey on the bottom of a baby’s foot to get it to sleep.
Sacrificing during Lent means eating a huge seafood platter or 10 pounds of crawfish on Fridays.

You ask someone, “Where do you stay?” instead of, “Where do you live?”
You say French words that you aren’t really sure are actual French words.
You end sentences with “yeah.”
You think people from other places talk funny.
You’ve ever gone to Downtown Alive! not knowing what band is playing.

You can’t park your car in your garage because it’s full of junk.
You went to UL Lafayette but don’t know its football schedule.
You know the days of the week by what plate lunch you are eating.

You remember family vacations to AstroWorld.
You’ve ever driven down a street that dead ends then re-appears somewhere else.

Your dad’s from Freetown, your mom’s from Fightinville, and you live in Wine Alley.

You know that in a Creole restaurant, stuffed meat is just highly seasoned, whereas in a Cajun restaurant it’s actually got something stuffed in it.

You only get the daily newspaper during crawfish season.

You’ve promised your vote in exchange for getting your driveway paved.

The best comedy show on the air is the Tuesday night city-parish council meeting.

You think the four food groups are beer, boudin, cracklins, and coffee.

You see nothing wrong with stuffing a pork chop with pork stuffing.

You see no conflict of allegiances when you go to a UL football game and everybody has an LSU bumper sticker.

You know that when you order rice and gravy you actually get some meat with it.

You know you can go on a beer run without ever getting out of the car.

You claim you only go to Hooters for the wings.

You give up cracklins for Lent.

You measure your land in arpents.

On the 4th of July you also celebrate the beginning of fig season.

When the weatherman predicts a hurricane, you fill up the bathtub.

You believe there are only two seasons — hurricane and football.

You remember seeing ZZ Top at Willy Purples.

You still talk about going dancing at Boo Boos even though it burned down 30 years ago.

Your pantry is filled with Slap Ya Mama, Cajun Power and Magic Swamp Dust.

Your favorite bands are either Playboys or Ramblers.

You refer to Pimon Thai as the place where the Stop N Shop Barbecue used to sell blood boudin.

You know what to do when somebody says to you, “Shake it and use it, baby.”

You’ve got five licenses in your wallet and none of them are for driving.

You remember when The Times of Acadiana had an editorial staff.

You only see your family from Abbeville on holidays because they live too far away.

When you say let’s go to the City Bar, you mean the one in the country.

When asked what the Holy Trinity is, you answer onions, bell pepper and celery.

You still call T-Joe, T-Joe.

You eat boudin and eggs for breakfast.

When introduced to someone your first question is, “Who’s your daddy?”

You know the price of fresh hog’s head cheese is $7.50.

You call your best friend to let him know that hog’s head cheese is on sale for $5.

You have to go out of town to date someone whose parents your parents don’t know.

You grow up knowing Apollo royalty.

You learn to suck crawfish heads before Pre-K.

You go to school with the same people from Pre-K to 12.

You take comfort in knowing that most of the items from this list will never, ever change.

Contributors: Marsha Miller, Erin Smith Briggs, Tyron Picard, Brad Hamman, Leah Simon, Jay Bienvenu, Vontilla Steven, Jason Devillier, Kaliste Saloom III, Andrea Rubinstein, Brian Bille, Mark Lalande, Nancy Shields, Ryan Marine, Carrie Griffin Broussard, Frank Camalo, Sue Kaplan, Jeremy Broussard, Terri Broussard, Justin Price, Christopher T. Lee, Nick Pittman, R. Reese Fuller, Mary Tutwiler, Scott Jordan, Leslie Turk and Nathan Stubbs