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You know you are from Alaska when...

J0nny Ling0

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You Know You're From Alaska When...

"Vacation" means driving to Chitna to dip net

You measure distance in hours.

You know several people who have hit a moose.

Your school classes aren't cancelled because of cold.

Your school classes were canceled because of ice.

You think of the major four food groups as moose, caribou, beer, and squaw candy.

You think that moose season is a national holiday.

You know what a real sockeye is, and have a recipe for candy ones.

You know if another Alaskan is from the city or the village as soon as they open their mouth.

You can spell words like Chatanika, Ninilchik, and Tuntutuliak.

You've had cabin fever.

You own moose nugget ear rings.

Mosquito dope is a part of your daily attire.

You think the song Breaking Up is Hard to Do is about spring time.

Travel luggage consists of ice coolers (or fish boxes) wrapped with duct tape.

A seven course meal is a sixpack and a can of SPAM.

When you answer the phone and it's a wrong number, but you know the number of the person they were trying to call off the top of your head.

You have bigger tires on your plane than on your car.

Someone mentions "super cub" and you do not envision a tiny bear wearing blue tights and a red cap.

Your relatives/friends think you live too far away for them to come visit you, but keep asking you to come see them more often.

October is the month of your highest income.

The reason you don't own a poodle is because an eagle ate the last one.

Kids catch the bus in the dark and get off it in the dark.

You know why they named it Chicken, Alaska.

You know that road flares will start a nice bon fire.

You take the door off the outhouse to see the aurora.

Your idea of taking a load off is emptying the firewood out of the back of the truck.

You know a tail-dragger is an airplane, not a bad day at the office.

You know that a Spenard Divorce involves a .357 magnum, not a lawyer.

You like your neighbors.

You know at least one pot grower.

You put up with the pain of a toothache until the Permanent Fund Dividend checks come out in October.

You know going "outside" involves a whole lot more than opening a door and walking into the yard.

You know Bunny Boots aren't worn by bunnies or made out of bunnies.

You know the meaning of the word "baleen" and it has nothing to do with making hay into large cubes.

You take off your shirt and your arms are as pale as your legs all the way to your wrists.

You don't know anyone who doesn't own a 4-wheeler.

You've washed your car while there was still snow on the ground.

You know a honey bucket is really a bucket, but it's not really full of honey.

You know that the Rat Net is not a rodent catching device.

You learned to swim indoors.

Your bedroom windows are covered in aluminum foil.

Your monthly veterinarian bill is more than your own medical bill.

You know a "white out" has to do with winter conditions not correcting fluid for typos.

You think it's normal for a town to put all the businesses on one side of the road. (Wasilla!)

Your local golf course has "happy hour" between 1:00 and 2:00 am

The seat in your outhouse is lined with styrofoam so your butt won't freeze to it when you have to sit down for a certain amount of time.

You've had to set your alarm every three hours to go start you car and let it run for 20 minutes so hopefully it will start in the morning so you can go to work.

Instead of plugging in your freezer, you've just move it to the front porch!

You open your freezer to take out something for dinner, and are faced with many choices, Pink Salmon, Silver Salmon, Red Salmon, King Salmon, Smoked Salmon, or Halibut!

You can play road hockey on skates.

You see signs saying Do or do NOT _____ but you never see any law enforcement people.

You actually get these jokes and pass them on to other friends from Alaska.

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That's what I was thinking, Chef!

I think I'm too much of a wimp to live in Alaska, but it sure does seem like a great place to eat!

If you don't have enough salmon to spare, I'll take some moose, caribou, beer, and squaw candy.

You own moose nugget ear rings.
What's a moose nugget?
Mosquito dope is a part of your daily attire.

What's mosquito dope?

When you answer the phone and it's a wrong number, but you know the number of the person they were trying to call off the top of your head.
This happened in my home town growing up. :biglaugh: Glad to hear it's still around somewhere.
You know that a Spenard Divorce involves a .357 magnum, not a lawyer.

What's a Spenard Divorce?

You know at least one pot grower.

How do they grow pot in all that snow? :spy:

I guess it's pretty dang obvious I'm not from Alaska, eh?

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Okay Belle, you sweet thing you. I don't know how to do the "quote thing" like you do, but I'll try to answer your questions...


A "moose nugget" is a pellet of moose crap. It is about the shape of a jelly bean, but about an inch long and5/8's of an inch wide, and of course is brown and composed of digested and perfectly formed excreted vegetation. Moose nuggets are usually found in fairly large piles of at least thirty or more. Certain people actually sell them to tourists by preserving them in some sort of shellac or polyurethane. They make earrings and other silly things out of them, and the tourists actually buy them...

Mosquito dope is nothing more than mosquito repellent. A better choice of a word than "attire" would have been "perfume" or "cologne". The mosquitos here are way bad, and can make you crazy, so, you have to wear your mosquito "dope".

The thing about someone calling you and getting the wrong number: This is just another way of saying; "Even though Alaska is the biggest state in the Union, it has such a small population, chances are that when you meet someone, you will know them, or, you will both know someone that knows each other. The example of the phone call is a bit overkill, but in a small Alaskan town, like the one we lived in (Haines), there were actually wrong number calls where we could tell the inaccurate dialer the number they actually wanted. But, this is probably true in all of America's small towns, I mean, come on...

Now, one thing that is true though, is that, wherever I have gone in the State while working, even in the small Eskimo villages to the West on the Bering Sea, I Have almost always found someone who personally knows one of my friends, or vice versa. In fact, once, during the winter and during a light snow while waiting for a small single engine plane to pick me and a friend up to give us a ride to another small village where we were building house for the Eskimos, a plane came in and landed. In that plane was a lawyer making "his rounds", and he landed in Stebbins and needed to wait for a plane different than the one we were waiting for. As it turned out, he was my partners DUI lawyer, and he says casually; "Oh hi James. Fancy finding you here in Stebbins. And by the way, I have some documents to sign for your up and coming court case. And so, in the cold, and in the snow, I lent my back so James could sign the documents against my parka while his lawyer pointed out the proper places to sign. And so, because of this incident, the old adage that I have heard time and again, really "gelled" for me right then. And that old adage is this: "Alaska, America's largest small town....."

A Spenard divorce is nothing more than a murder down in Spenard Street where all the whores hang out. Either a guy loses his wife because she finds out he was with a hooker, or, his wife shoots him for it once she finds out about it. But, this isn't particularly Alaskan, except for the "Spenard" part, and maybe the trigger happy part. There is a lake known as Lake Spenard, and that old rock 'n roll band "The Youngbloods" actually did a song called "On Beautiful Lake Spenard". Lake Spenard and Spenard Street are both in Anchorage, one of the meanest little cities in America, a city of only 300,000, and our biggest....

How do they grow pot in all of that snow? Actually, they don't. Because Alaska has a short growing season, "Alaska reefer inclined horticulturists" grow their pot in green houses "hydroponically", and have become quite good at producing some of the best reefer I have ever tried, and "MTF" is known for it's potency even outside of Alaska. There is a "brand known as "Matanuska Thunder ****" (MTF), grown in the Matanuska Valley. I quit smoking pot back in '74, but on a whim, when a pipe was passed my way about a year ago, I thought; "Oh well, wtf? And took a hit. And man! It was way more powerful than any reefer that I ever tried, ever. In fact, it made me so stoned I had to ask God to "turn me off", for I did not like it at all. It reminded me of why I quit that sh i t .

Cool Chef, I have fifty pounds of fresh flash frozen Coho in my freezer, ready to be smoked, and a few of them grilled with alder chips and my wife's "special sauce" of brown sugar, soy sauce, and certain other seasonings, and, that is our winter stash....Mmmmmm

And so, I hope that answers some questions....


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Thanks, Johnny! :D I love learning about how other people live. We seem to take things for granted in our own little corners of the world sometimes and it's fascinating to learn about the "everyday" life of others. Those things that just become "habit", "normal" and "routine" are truly foreign to others who don't have the same challenges. I just love it! I think I'm a voyeur at heart. ;)

I'll remember to not buy the moose nugget jewelry if I ever get the honor of visiting Alaska. My Daddy lived in Juneau for a summer during college working on the pipeline and laying trails along it. He loved it so much up there that he took about 700 rolls of film. When he got home he made everyone watch his slide show about a million times and so I grew up with the family joke about the famous "Alaskan Slide Show".

Mama and Daddy went back last year and he got his picture made in front of the cabin they stayed in posing in the exact place where he had posed as a young college student. It's a great comparison shot and having the two pictures hanging side by side at home is really neat. I hope to get to visit sometime.

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Johny you nailed ....... I had to pass this one on to my friends. A few more.

I have moose nugget pencils.

I know a woman who hip shot a moose in her stables with a .22 rifle and killed it.

The mosquito is our national bird.

Fresh scent bug dope is brought out for company.

We end up with an 8 ft snow burm by the end of winter and our driveway looks like a tunnel.

During the winter months we quickly pass by or stay clear of those vehicles with out of state license plates.

Not only do you know one pot grower you have at least one felon living within a mile radius of your house.

Can split wood faster with an axe than with an electric wood splitter

We have only two seasons ....... winter and construction.


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Here is another one I remember reading somewhere:

"You know you are from Alaska when you wait for a commercial before looking out the window to see the moose or the bear in your yard".

That is totally true down in Haines where I lived for almost nine years, and when it comes to black bears in Juneau, why, those damned things are as common all summer long as eagles!

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I like to shrink wrap it. I have a few packages in the fridge right now. Coho. I have to thaw some and smoke some more. No like canning for some reason. Shrink wrap better. Tarzan like shrink wrap. "Food Saver" good. Canning bad...

And maybe since you are Chef, and I a mere merchant seaman/carpenter, my recipe "bad". Me no want ridicule...

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i am a mere chef willing to taste a mere carpenters salmon!lol

SEND SALMON LOL :D :beer: jl when i go to my clubs annul convention}alwasy a different city }last year was in calgory, the folks from alaska always bring smoked salmon for snacks in thier hospitality room

it is always so good

and they are so rightfully proud of it

we here in maine bring of course sea spiders!!

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Hey DMiller-

We know that Alaska does not have the "corner" on cold weather. But when it comes to the amount of time this damnable weather lasts, then maybe we do! At least in America any way. Seems like it was just spring only a few months ago, and it has been snowing like hell all day! In fact, it has been ....ty and cold for at least the ten weeks! Man, how I would love to experience a nice, "Indian Summer", with crisp air in the morning, DRY leaves that change colors and then fall to the ground, and then a nice warming in the after noon...

But, we are already "done" until springtime, and anything nice between now and then is a "bonus". But of course, winter sports here are lots of fun, and so we look fwd to that. Right now, our ski mountain (Eaglecrest-do a word search with Juneau included) has already begun to get a nice base....

Anyhoo, yeah, only two seasons is about right!


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This thread is terrific!!!!! Brings me back to the day...sigh. :)

A few more:

Vacationing in Hawaii for the whole winter is cheaper than staying home and buying groceries.

If you're buying meat or dog food, you're a greenhorn.

You have at least 12 dogs, only one of them is a pit bull...and it's the 'loving family pet', you cook for them and they eat as well as (sometimes times better than) your family does.

Knitting/crocheting booties is akin to a town quilting bee...and they're not for new babies.

You've had pneumonia a few times and didn't know it.

All the best dining/entertainment places check hunting rifles, not coats and hats.

You: skinny dip in a hot springs when the temp hits 20 below; make the kids come in for recess when it hits 10 below; take off a layer of clothing when it hits 20 above; stop wearing a coat when it hits 35 above; put on shorts when it hits 50 above; and turn on the A/C when it hits 70 above...and you know by smell, not a thermometer, when the temp changes.

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Good ones Cool Waters! Sounds like you made those up yourself because you know by experience!

Here is one I decided to "make up" because it happened to our nine year old a number of times this fall:

"You know you are from Alaska when your child's elementary school class has to stay inside for recess because "another damned black bear is out wandering on the playground, again!", and the kids are all going; "Shoot! No kick ball! It's an other bear!" as they all stand at the window watching and yelling; "get outa here bear"!

But even if the bear leaves, the kids still hafta stay inside, for the teachers know that the bear may not have gone far.....

Oh, and here's another;

"You know you are from Alaska when you are sittin naked in a hot tub on the neighbors deck with your wife and his wife, and it's 20 below (and he's there too ;), but the tub is nice and hot, the beer is cold, and your hair is frozen stiff!!!"

Edited by Jonny Lingo
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Remembering from my early teen years:

You know you are from Alaska when:

you find yourself playing baseball at midnight, without lights.

you can go down towards Valdez from Anchorage , goldpan for the day, and have enough thrills and memories to last a lifetime. (And enough nuggets to make a few tie tacks mounted on Alaskan jade.)

Ahh, was a privilege to have lived in the big state. However, I do have a picture of myself here in Colorado, standing on a roof, with my tool belt on, fishing pole in hand, and playing a brown trout in the brook below. I captioned it: "Tis a privilege to WORK in Colorado"


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