My Name is Flatlander

A forum to discuss your inspirations and reflections while visiting Vermont in any season. What evokes your passion for the state of Vermont? Do you have an amusing story to tell or a memorable experience while traveling there? All are welcome to participate. You must be registered in order to post. If you have trouble registering, use the contact us form on Scenes of Vermont's home page.

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ctyanky
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My Name is Flatlander

Postby ctyanky » Thu Sep 09, 2010 8:11 pm

'Tis but thy name that is my enemy;
Thou art thyself, though not a Vermonter.
What's Flatlander? It is nor hand, nor foot,
Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part
Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!
What's in a name?


I googled Flatlander and this definition came up first: :evil:

Flatlanders by Erin Moreua

“Flatlander is used as a negative slander on non-native Vermonters or visitors. In its basic concept, the term implies a person who visits the state or lives here that brings negative qualities from their home to our state. It is a person who is unfamiliar with traditional Vermont ways. Nathan Mansfield, a native Vermonter, defines the term as “Thinking they [a flatlander] can meld their beliefs of what Vermont is into our reality.” Unfortunately for the flatlander, even if they assimilate to Vermont culture and reside here for 50 years, they can never rid themselves of this label.”

So, I decided to search for something more postive: 8)

“Though many view the term as negative slander, not everyone–nor every Vermonter sees it that way. This is especially the case when a “flatlander” moves to Vermont and embeds themselves into the culture over the years. When that’s the case, the word can actually become one of affection–a sort of pet name–often used teasingly by “native” Vermonters, who have accepted the non-native as their own.”

Now why does one living in Vermont as a non-native or coming as a visitor or tourist have to be called a Flatlander? I mean, I don’t call anyone coming to my state, visiting or otherwise, anything! They just blend in and we all move on.

Ok, so to even things out.....I don’t trespass on private property to take photos, I pull over when leaf-peeping to let others pass, I don’t ramble about my state but rather listen with great interest as locals tell their own story or offer advice on where to go and what to do, and I don’t compare my state to their’s, EVER.

“When in Vermont, do as the Vermonters do.”

Well yes, I am “from away”, no doubt about that! Gosh, if I am driving around the state, sometimes I feel like my license plate is glowing and even reflective at night reading “CTFlatlander”. Sometimes it is a relief to be a passenger in my Vermonter friends’ cars (Charles, Phil, bm from the forum - it makes me feel part of the “in crowd”). :P

Nonetheless, I have never, ever, had a negative interaction with anyone who lives in Vermont, whether native or transplant. I have been welcomed more in this state than any other place I have traveled to. Tourist or not, I’m proud to call Vermont my second home.

I just guess I will never be anything but a Flatlander. No sense fussing about it. It is what it is. And guess what Vermont, I’ll be there real soon! :wink:

P.S. Can I at least be an “Honorary Flatlander?” :roll:
CT - Moderator for Scenes of Vermont
**************
Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. ~George Eliot


bvahjen
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Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2006 12:01 am
Location: Chester

Postby bvahjen » Thu Sep 09, 2010 8:56 pm

Its been very interesting living with Flatlander syndrome at our little cabin. Whenever we go to dinner at the local establishments, I can tell that we look different somehow than the locals and you try to act local but you can't shake that Flatlander look. In fact, we got so tired of getting stopped by the cops for driving 57 in a 50 or "failure to keep left" (ever heard of that one) that we bought an old jeep and registered it in Vermont. Never got stopped again, but now it is so rusted, that no self respecting Vermonter would drive it, so we are getting conspicuous again! We have embraced it all now as part of the charm of living in a foreign land. A small price to pay for visiting the promised land.

ctyanky
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Postby ctyanky » Fri Sep 10, 2010 5:29 am

Hysterical. Love the way you have written this!

Failure to keep left? Not sure about that one :?:

I can tell that we look different somehow than the locals and you try to act local but you can't shake that Flatlander look.


Perhaps it's the Connecticut look that you can't shake??? :P :P :P

pwt54
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Postby pwt54 » Sun Sep 12, 2010 11:29 am

I don't use the term Flatlander much anymore because it's politically incorrect. ( There's an oxymoron for ya.) I've been know to backslide when I'm driving, as in, "You crazy Flatlander, ain't you never heard of turn signals?" or "You dam fool Flatlander, does this look like the Daytona Speedway to you?". A couple of weeks ago we had two different drivers from (good grief) Connecticut do over 100 mph through a 55 mph zone. :shock: What bothered me was there was only two of them. If more of them did 100 mph theough the 55 mph zone our gov'ment could balance the budget this year.

ctyanky
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Postby ctyanky » Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:25 pm

Well Phil..... seeing that I will be in your "Vermont" car for four VERY FULL days of touring over hill and dale this season (yes, I counted them - the first Friday, Saturday, Sunday and the last Friday before I leave), you will have this full blooded Connecticut Yankee Flatlander witnessing the cursing! This I have to see for myself. :P

I hope no CT cars screw up! :shock: So please be easy on those crazy CT drivers or you won't get some of the pumpkin bread my sister just made for our trip! Your favorite item in last year's junk food bag! :wink:

P.S. I am an easy going driver who obeys the speed limits in VT so I personally, will never become a victim of your car wrath/mutterings :!:

pwt54
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Postby pwt54 » Mon Sep 13, 2010 11:37 am

Luckily for us poor old Vermonters, there ain't all that many "crazy Flatlanders" driving our roads. A couple of things I should mention; Leafpeepers get a free ride during foliage season and I use more colorful language for the crazy Vermont drivers. They should know better. :D



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