There’s nothing quite like a Minnesota summer. Canoeing across a lake, having a cold beverage in the hot sun, laying on the grass under the shade of a majestic ash tree — we’re convinced that, for a few months, we live in one of the most beautiful places on the planet.
But it’s because of this sentiment that Minneapolis actually sucks in the summer. As we live in a terrifyingly cold and dangerous wasteland for over half of the year, the warm weather fashions a self-centeredness where people are willing to kick each other’s grandmothers to death for a chance to relax in the sun.
We give you this list to help bring a voice to the voiceless: to speak for those who recognize the problems in this city, yet can’t quite articulate why everything around here is so fucked when the flowers start to bloom. Perhaps by pointing out precisely what’s going on, we can learn from our mistakes, and stop being such tremendous pricks to each other as we enjoy sitting outside without the fear of losing our fingers.
Here are 12 reasons why Minneapolis is almost intolerable in the summer:
(And please, kids, before you take to the comments section? It’s not “clickbait” if it’s right.)
12. Auto Drivers
The moment that Minnesota weather goes from provoking self-harm to cheery, radiant sunshine is the same moment that every dickhead decides to “seize the day.” As it is absolutely necessary for you to meet up with your idiot friends for brunch, happy hour, or some other asinine crap event that occurs every single day anyway, there’s no time to do petty things like use turn signals or avoid making sudden U-turns. Minneapolis drivers show their true colors by being selfish shits, speeding down residential streets from one stop sign to the next for the sole purpose of saving a dollar on some garbage fartwater beer.
Probably the only thing cooler than seeing a gigantic dump of a human being carelessly propel their 4,000 lb symbol of wealth and isolation down a densely populated neighborhood is hearing a motorcycle in the summertime. When you’re out for a stroll among the birds, trees, and pudgy-jocks on patios talking shit to you as you walk by, it’s so nice to hear the screaming sound of burning toxins that are slowly eradicating all life on Earth. Keep revving those engines: The more gas you burn, the faster we can all leave this planetary hell.
There’s this sentiment that a lot of bicyclists have that you should unwaveringly support them regardless of how rude they are simply because you also ride a bike. But that’s like saying that the staff at Red Lobster should have stood up for John Wayne Gacy after his conviction for murdering 33 people just because he also liked fried shrimp. Let’s be honest: Just because we share a common interest doesn’t mean we owe you some sort of allegiance.
In the summer, 50 percent of all cyclists are just as terrible as the careless motorist masses they actively abhor. Zipping through red lights, riding on the sidewalk after bar-close, wearing headphones so people can’t safely alert you that they’re passing — all that shit sucks. And don’t forget the weekend-warrior crowd that lives to harangue people on the Greenway for not going fast enough or, god forbid, someone stops on the path instead of careening off into a ditch to slow down. Four wheels or two, you’re still probably an asshole.
Alright, these people aren’t really much of a problem in the summertime…or ever. But I saw one once and it really pissed me off. I’m still working through it, though, so they make this list.
8. Restaurant Patios/Rooftops
Similar to why they drive so poorly, Minnesotans choose to exorcise their inner demons as anonymously and as safely as possible. Patios and rooftops lend themselves to this crude mutation, providing a great opportunity for oafish meatheads and future suburban soccer parents to talk endless amounts of shit while safely perched away and protected under the guise of commerce. Hopefully you’re all compensating your servers and bartenders well for the two hours spent ordering the cheapest food and drinks on the menu.
7. Dumb T-Shirts
“Suns Out, Guns Out,” “This Girl Needs A Mimosa,” that dumb blue or red vintage shirt of the Millenium Falcon from Star Wars, couples wearing matching “Sunday Funday” shirts, anything with a print of the flag of the country that dropped two atomic bombs on Japan — whatever you put on today to advertise how clever you are, Keep Calm And Fuck Off.
6. The Weird Happiness
There’s no such thing as Minnesota Nice. It’s “Minnesota Talk To You Because I’ll Feel Bad If I Don’t”/“Minnesota Ignore You If You’re Not White.” However, there’s something about the warm weather that causes you people to suddenly decide that it’s safe to have a conversation with a stranger.
Sadly, as most of you have sparked up a conversation with someone you don’t know only 10 times, you have no idea how to talk to people. Joking awkwardly, interrupting with excessive self-consciousness and constantly apologizing... the rest of us walk around feeling confused and intellectually assaulted by your bullshit babbling. Maybe you should stick to nervously drinking and safely chatting with the same social circle you’ve had for the last 15 years at one of those E. coli infested “beaches.”
5. Festivals/Block Parties
You fucking squares don’t care about music, you just want a place to drink Bud Light Lime outside while you pretend to have a place in a culture that doesn’t need you and your fair-weather pocketbook. Enjoy your $12 bacon-wrapped dates and keep pretending you know what band is playing.
4. Pedal Pubs
There are two types of people in this world: People who hate pedal pubs and people who think that getting drunk, congesting bars while tipping poorly, and delaying emergency vehicles is more important than the happiness and sanity of the community they invaded from the suburbs.
3. It’s Hot
The jeans you should have washed a month ago are now lighting your genitals on fire with every step you take around the lake. Burnt skin is flaking off your nose as you enthusiastically describe how good green tea ice cream is to a close friend. Your black T-shirt has a salt-rim of sweat around your chest and collar. And as much as you want to eat one of the 10 cans of barely expired clam chowder you stocked up on two winters ago, you know it’s just going to fire out of your nostrils after the third bite of milky stew in 90 degree weather.
2. Asshole Bros
They’re out and they’re in a good mood. There’s usually at least four of them, so be careful what you say back to their sarcastic comments on your clothes, unwelcome statements about your body, or how you react to their neanderthal bellows as they saunter from patio to rooftop to patio to whatever store still sells golf visors. The most problematic thing about the Asshole Bro crowd is that most of them probably have no idea that 95 percent of everything they say and do is completely awful. Like everyone else in the summer, they’re just trying to have a good time and failing to notice who they’re making miserable in the process.
1. Winter is Coming
They say if it seems too good to be true, then it probably is. There are a lot of wonderful things about summer in Minnesota, but it always seems bittersweet, as we’ll still face stinging winds and tingling digits in a few months. On the bright side of this inevitable disappointing dinginess, at least we can all collectively bond over the same thing for once: Our shared misery. If that sounds depressing to you, you’re missing one of the best things about living in Minnesota.
Unlike the fiercely frustrating spirit of “I’ve gotta get mine” that the summer brings, the weather is so severe that we’re forced to all acknowledge each other’s evident struggle. It makes you wonder what we could do as a society if we could all also recognize the constant pain of loneliness and worthlessness we all experience.