is a contraction for
U.P.er or Upper Peninsula resident.
It is also the opposite of Loper, or
Lower Peninsula Resident.
These terms are regional to Michigan. When you move from the Lower Peninsula to the Upper Peninsula, you move "over the bridge" which is a reference to the Mackinac Bridge that spans the five miles of the Straits of Mackinac, that treacherous waterway separating Michigan's two peninsulas. Once you move to the Upper Peninsula and become a Yooper, you learn a different name for those who live below the bridge: trolls.
Lower Peninsula life is much like anywhere else. Some areas are more populated than others, but most of the Lower Peninsula population has easy access to good shopping and medical care.
Not so in the remote Upper Peninsula. Yoopers define remoteness by how far they live from the nearest town, city, Walmart, or hospital. Or Yoopers can define remoteness by a definition of heavy traffic, eg. when one car passes another car going in opposite directions.
Remoteness has its benefits. I was recently asked in a blog interview how I deal with the "run, run, run" of our modern world. The answer was simple. I don't. Where I live there is no rush to do this or that. Hey, we don't even have a TV signal, so there's no, "hurry up so we can watch that show we want to see."
Most people would probably find our remote location far too distant for their everyday needs. For us, becoming Yoopers was a good move for our retirement years. We've left the trolls behind with no regrets.
Do you have any "regionalisms" where you live? Please let me know by leaving a comment, then click on a link to visit another blog on the letter Y. Thanks for stopping by! Be blessed!