Maine is ‘a state of mind’: Website lists 27 things we have to explain to folks from away

Helen Vose serves up baked beans for the Saturday night supper at the Centre Street Congregational Church in Machias. (BDN file photo)

Helen Vose serves up baked beans for the Saturday night supper at the Centre Street Congregational Church in Machias. (BDN file photo)

If you’ve seen one “Maine is so lovably quirky!” listicle online, you’ve basically seen them all.

Yeah, we get it. Maine people wear Bean boots, drink Moxie, read Stephen King, eat lobster and sometimes have an accent.

But in case you still find these things amusing, the real estate blog Movoto posted its “27 things that you have to explain to out-of-towners about Maine.”

Much of the list is predictable — it hits on all the standard stuff I rattled off above — but does go a half step further by acknowledging our love of red hot dogs, whoopie pies, Amato’s pickles and Humpty Dumpty potato chips, for instance.

And it does add a couple other decent things I don’t see on many other listicles about the state.

Among them:

No. 1: Maine “is basically Canada by proxy.” Considering our geography, heavy French-Canadian ancestry and international trading tendencies, this isn’t too far off.

Reads the Movoto piece, in part: “Maine is the northernmost state in the Lower 48 and the culture difference between here and Florida is like night and day. They share a lot of things in common with our Canadian neighbors, from favorite foods and regional traditions to slang and expressions.”

No. 8: Politicians in Maine “are totally reasonable.” Movoto is basing this on our long history of sending moderate, straight-talking politicians to Congress, from Margaret Chase Smith to Olympia Snowe to today’s Susan Collins and Angus King. And in that context, the assertion is defensible.

Explains Movoto: “Maine’s political system is generally level-headed and the voter base is well-informed. It’s a centrist state where elections can swing either way, even Independent, and they don’t lose their minds over every little thing.”

No. 14: Everyone in Maine gathers for bean suppers on the weekends. The site calls them “Sunday bean suppers,” which isn’t totally accurate — many communities hold their bean suppers on Saturday night — but we’ll forgive the oversight.

The site reads: “A tradition in Maine that dates back to the days of the pilgrims, baked bean suppers are a delicious and inexpensive way for locals to congregate with their community. At a traditional bean supper, you’ll find lots of casseroles, homemade pies, cole slaw, and a mess load of baked beans.”

No. 17: Maine beaches are the best beaches. Nationwide, I don’t think Maine often gets the credit it deserves for its beaches, so it’s nice to see someone recognize that.

Again, from the Movoto post: “Sure, any state with a beach sees a spike in tourists over the summer. But there’s just something about hibernating through the bitterly sub-zero winters and the pristine sands and ocean that make Maine beaches some of the best you’ll ever visit.”

No. 20: Our Italian sandwiches. I guess out-of-staters aren’t familiar with what we mean when we refer to Italian sandwiches, and not as many Maine listicles pick up on that. Good catch, Movoto.

No. 23: Fiddleheads are the finest delicacy. Another good one. If you want to read more about how to prepare fiddleheads, click here and here.

No. 26: Puffins > penguins. As stocky, black-and-white ocean birds go, Mainers do love their puffins above all others.

Click here to read the entire Movoto list. Do you consider these things accurate? What else do Mainers have to explain to folks from away? Leave your comments below or share them on Facebook.