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17 ways to spot someone from the suburbs in Chicago

Written by
Nick Kotecki

Let's be honest, it isn't that hard to spot someone from out of town in Chicago, let alone a person visiting from the suburbs. Not that being from the suburbs is a bad thing—'cause it's not—it's just a little easier to pick suburbanites out in the crowd. Sometimes they actually are the crowd.

Those from the suburbs should feel at home in Chicago. After all, we're one of the friendliest cities for tourists in the U.S. And yes, no matter how much one might protest, we do view those who commute from the suburbs as tourists—even if it's just for work. "Home is where the heart is," as the saying goes. There's no point in fighting it, we Chicagoans can spot these folks from three blocks away.

1. They stop walking in the middle of the sidewalk.

2. They are part of the snake-like hordes crossing the river toward Union Station and Ogilvie Center.

3. They patiently wait for the traffic lights to change.

4. They are at Navy Pier. By choice. 

5. They are looking up, blinking lots...while stopped in the middle of the sidewalk.

6. They are loudly talking about sports on the train.

7. They just said, “parking isn't that bad in Wrigleyville during a Cubs game.”

8. They don’t know how to get to the lake.

9. They are staring at the Picasso statue for a very long time.

10. They know absolutely nothing about the South Side.

11. They ask which train goes to the airport and don’t specify Midway or O’Hare.

12. They are waiting for a table at Giordano’s, not realizing there are multiple locations.

13. They are intently watching the guy painted silver do tricks on Michigan Avenue.

14. They are wearing a three-piece suit and sneakers in the morning.

15. They are anxiously watching the clock at the bar to make sure they don't miss the last Metra. 

16. They joke about Chicago gun crime.

17. They call anywhere in the city downtown. 


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