For my Polish friends ...


You call your grandma "babcia" or "busia" and your grandpa "dziadzia."

You know how to dance the polka, but you only do it at weddings after
kicking back a few generous shots of vodka or a few highballs.

You like to drink. Especially beer. Especially cheap beer.
When frustrated, you slap your forehead, shake your head, and say "O Jezu Marija!"

You have one grandma that wears a babushka and galoshes every single day
of the year and another grandma that wears a lot of jewelry and too
much make-up.

If you come from Chicago, Buffalo, Cleveland, Hamtramck, or Milwaukee
there is a large church called "Saint Stanislaus," or "Saint Hedwig,"
within one block of your childhood home (that is, unless you're one of
those suburban exiles, in which case the church is within one block of
your babcia's house!)

The neighorhood you grew up in is called "Little Warsaw," "Slavic
Village," "Polish Hill," or something of that sort. You like to
celebrate St. Patrick's Day but only because "the Irish are oppressed too"!

Your knowledge of the Polish language is limited to 'naughty' words
(e.g. dupa, gowno, gatki, etc.); names for food (e.g. pierogi, kapusta, etc.);
and drinking toasts (e.g. nazdrowie, sto lat, etc.).

You occasionally add the suffix "ski" to English words for no apparent
reason (e.g. "I'm gonna go put the car-ski in the garage-ski"). [If you
also happen to know a few basic conversational phrases in Polish you are
considered "old school" by friends and relatives.]

You have a grandma who uses every single part of animal carcasses to
make sausages, soups, dumplings, etc.
You have at least one uncle named "Stan," or "Stas."

You have at least one relative who works, or used to work, for the Big Three.

Your relatives devotion to saints, the Blessed Virgin, the Pope, the
Democratic Party, the U.S. Steelworkers, etc.

Your grandma has a shrine complete with votive candles and a picture of
the "Our Lady of Czestochowa" or "Infant of Prague."

Your parents have at least one crucifix or religious picture mounted on
a wall in their house with palms tucked behind it.

Your grandparents and other relatives habitually kiss everyone they
meet.

You refer to your two dozen or so cousins by childhood nicknames (e.g.
Stannie, Nicky, Louie, Joey, Chickie, Honey, etc.) irrespective of their
ages.

You refer to grandparents and aunts by pet names (e.g. Aunt Honey, Aunt
Chickie, Grandpa Jo-Jo, etc.).

You regularly attend Friday fish fries, harvest festivals,
parish festivals, Vegas nights, and/or Bingo.

You bowl regularly and/or on a team sponsored by a local bar.

You get your food blessed at Easter and your house blessed at Christmas
time.

Your family has a wigilia meal on Christmas Eve at which you share
oplatki.

You like to put sour cream, horseradish, and/or beer on everything you eat.

Your family likes to play card games like hearts and pinochle, and this
often culminates in full-scale brawls.

You always prefer rye bread to white or wheat.

Your dad has forced you to eat horseradish, claiming that it will "put
hair on your chest" (even If you're a female!).

You like to go "mushroom hunting."

People in your family have their wedding receptions at places called
"Polish Legion Hall," "Sacred Heart Center," etc.

You know the words to "Sto Lat" and sing it at all birthday
parties.

You can out-drink all of your friends.

You have waited in line at a church or bakery to buy pierogi or paczki.

You frequently add "dere" (there) and/or "ya know" to the end of
sentences. Words like kiszka, kielbasa, and kolaczki actually mean
something to you.

You know the difference between Czechs, Slovaks, and Slovenes, and you
think they're all inferior to Poles despite the numerous glaring
similarities.

You used to get a day off from school on Saint Joseph's Day (March 19).

You actually know who Kosciuszko and Pulaski are and why they're
important.

You have at least one relative who plays the accordion.

You are inclined to blame all the world's ills on Germans and Russians.

You have an easier time getting along with Irishmen and Italians than
with non-Polish Slavs.

You're either completely overdressed or completely
underdressed for every occasion.

If you're a woman, you wear make-up at all times - even if it's 90
degrees outside and you're 88 years old.

Your idea of "healthy" is boiled pierogi, light beer, and filtered
cigarettes.

You walk into a crowd of people you don't know and talk to them like
they're your best friends in the whole world.

You hoard vast amounts of money in your house.

You have at least one bar in your house - usually in the basement.

Your family always has an excuse to hold a "poprawinie" - e.g. when
someone dies, or when someone gets married.

You've never been to Poland, but you have mysterious relatives there to
whom you send gifts and money every Christmas.

Your front yard is filled with lawn ornaments - e.g. pink flamingos, jockey, Mary in the halfshell, etc.

You have relatives who are priests and nuns.

You collect "prayer cards" from funerals.

You or someone in your family owns a highly outdated Dodge or Plymouth.

You regularly attend Mass but spend most of the ceremony sleeping and/or
looking at the parish bulletin.

You haven't been a practicing Catholic for years but everyone in your
family insists that it's "just a phase."

You often visit cemeteries, light votive candles for dead relatives, and
generally spend an unhealthy amount of time obsessing about death.

You like to gossip and generally talk too much.
People often have trouble pronouncing your last name.

Your family is so loyal that even a second cousin would take a bullet
for you.

You drink your coffee black and take your liquor straight up.
If you're from Chicago you come by my house to go shopping at Jewels or
Dominick. You used to shop at Kroeger, A&Ps, HiLows, Monkey Wards, and
Sears Robuck.

Source: Thomas Sobieski "FB" Group "I Grew Up in Hamtramck"

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