What I’ve learned about Iowans

February 5, 2009 —

kendallHey ya’ll! I’m a new blogger. My name is Kendall Conder. I’m a 24 yo SWF, born and raised in Las Vegas. I graduated from Auburn University in 2007 (War Eagle Go Tigers! Yes, I know about Chizik… and Rhoads). I started physical therapy school at DMU in August 2008. 

Little bit about me: I maintain an exceptional level of awesomeness at all times. I dominate when it comes to all things non-academic. I enjoy cooking, obsessing over college football, planning vacations I don’t have time or money to take and watching snow fall from the sky (it blows my mind). 

Since the move to Iowa, I’ve taken note of some important things outsiders should know about those indigenous to the Land of Corn. Below is an exhaustive list of four distinguishing characteristics of Iowans. If you ever encounter someone who appears to meet all four criteria, there is a 96% chance they are 100% Iowan.

1. Iowans love Iowans. 

Nowhere else in America are people more proud of their state. I’m saying this and I lived in the south for four years. Where else can you find a museum devoted to achievements of high school jocks and band nerds? The Iowa Hall of Pride is a museum in downtown Des Moines devoted to the sole purpose of “celebrating the accomplishments of all Iowans.” In a word, it’s incredible. Do yourself a favor and go. Remember how much publicity Shawn Johnson got during the Olympics? Multiply that by like 100 and that’s about how much air time she got here in Des Moines between her jewelry, chocolate, banking and grocery store promotions. And I don’t know if you know this (if you’re from Iowa, you definitely do), but Kurt Warner is also an Iowan. Imagine what the news was like leading up to the Super Bowl: “Kurt Warner, native of Burlington, Iowa took a few practice snaps today and answered questions from members of the media in preparation for the big game on Sunday. We have exclusive video of him posing beside a large, unidentifiable mascot. In other news, the stock tanked another 20 points.” Iowa pride isn’t defensive, ostentatious or obnoxious. It’s just awesome. You gotta embrace it. You’re gonna love it. 

2. Seven out of ten men in Iowa are named Nate.

If you are from Iowa and you are not named Nate, then chances are you know a Nate… or six. In my class of 50, there are two Nates. I’m guessing there are some other Nates who are hiding their Nate-ness in a middle name, so I’ll round up that 4% to 70% to fit the stated characteristic. 70% of the guys in my class are named Nate. That’s a lot. I know one Nate who is married to a girl who has a Nate as a dad and another Nate as a brother and another Nate as a cousin. Four Nates in two generations in a single family… I think I’ve made my point. 

3. Iowans enjoy playing cards. A lot.

Places I have seen cards being played by Iowans: at home, in a restaurant, at a park, in a bar, in a classy bar, in an airport, on an airplane, in the hospital wait room, in a church, during church, parked outside the grocery store and on the hood of a car while waiting for roadside assistance. So next time you get stuck somewhere, like church, ask an Iowan for a deck of cards. They’ll have one, and they’ll teach you how to play euchre.  

4. Everyone in Iowa — literally everyone — is married. 

I can confidently postulate that 98% of Iowans over the age of 22 are married or in a serious relationship headed that direction. In my class of 50, ten of us are single. If I throw out covariants (I learned that word today and I’m still not quite sure what it means so I’ll attempt its usage here), aka the youngins in our class, that 80% becomes 98%. 98% of my class has a significant other. That’s a lot. It’s fortunate I don’t have any qualms about inserting myself into people’s relationships. It’s also fortunate that my classmates allow me to invade their relationships. Everyone being married means this third wheel gets a two-for-one deal on friends. Two-for-one Iowans… what’s not to love?


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