This summer, Boelter + Lincoln got a new import: an intern from Minnesota. I’m originally from the Milwaukee area, but go to school at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities. And with saying that, I will now accept any verbal jousts about our semi-decent football team and how we wouldn’t know Paul Bunyan’s Axe if we got spanked on the behind with it.
It wasn’t until I spent some time away from Wisconsin that I realized the type of city Milwaukee is. I would describe it with tough. Not in a violent sort of way, but a “show up, work hard and don’t take $&!+” kind of tough (I’m not allowed to blog choice words yet; I’m just an intern.)
Milwaukee isn’t the most glamorous of cities; see any models pontooning on the Milwaukee River? But I think Milwaukee’s not-so-glamorous-ness is exactly what weeds out the pansies and leaves the rest of the city “Milwaukee Tough.” I like to think of Milwaukee Tough as a mix between hard-working Wisconsin hick and tough-skinned city slicker. Milwaukee packs all the fight of a big metropolitan city without as much of the flash. Jay-Z has yet to rap about how great the city is, and the Real Housewives of Milwaukee hasn’t begun filming yet (I’m sure it’s the next stop though).
You don’t have to look too far to find Milwaukee Tough, we’re brimming with it. Early morning shoveling workouts and subzero commutes shape us into purebred Eskimos. Harley Davidson rides proud here. Summerfest blasts our name to the world. And don’t forget we’ve got lots of passionate beer makers and drinkers… I won’t comment further on the topic because you don’t hear much about that stuff in college.
You can also find Milwaukee Tough in the absolute unconditional love for Wisconsin sports teams, even those pinstripe-adorned skunks… more commonly known as the Badgers. It doesn’t matter how frozen the tundra is, how many players are on the DL due to wives’ free-falling suitcases, or whether or not the wide receiver is a dancing champion – there’s always a tough crowd shouting supportive obscenities in the arena… and at the TV.
The “tough” reputation probably makes some people think we don’t appreciate fine art, but I would beg to differ. There is not one person in Milwaukee that doesn’t appreciate the fine art of tailgating. The budget for the Bean Bag Toss Museum hasn’t been cleared yet – but I’m sure it’s pending!
All of these contribute qualities to the Tough persona that we may or may not take notice to. Before I knew it, I was seeing it right here at B+L. Milwaukee Tough is more than a group of wannabe Wisconsinites; it’s a genuine character that dominates Dairyland.