How “Midwestern” is your vocabulary? Curiously, Airbnb listings might hold the answer

The Washington Post scoured hundreds of thousands of ads to identify the most used words in America’s Heartland.

Renovated or rehabilitated? Asphalt or bitumen? Dinner or supper?

They sound pretty similar, but the word you choose says a lot about your origin, at least according to Washington Post data analysts. And if you often talk about supper after a busy day rehabilitating asphalt, you are undoubtedly from the Midwest.

In a quest to find “The Most Midwestern Things on Earth,” analysts tracked Airbnb data to determine which words are most commonly used in our part of the country, when describing potential vacation rentals to the rest. of the world.

Where is the Midwest?

Before it could parse the words, The Washington Post had to draw its map and figure out which states were most likely to consider themselves part of the Midwest. Analysts found 12 that mentioned the region “to an unusual degree”.

When ranked by the percentage of Airbnb listings that use the Midwest to describe their location, the region is made up of Iowa, Indiana, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Ohio and South Dakota.

Then, once the boundaries were established, analysts compiled a list of the most commonly used words in Airbnb listings for those states. Their only two rules: every word had to be mentioned in at least 300 different lists. And no brand names (sorry, Hy-Vee!)

What words do Midwesterners use the most?

These are the most unique words in the “Midwest,” according to the Washington Post, and how often they’re mentioned in Airbnb listings:

  1. Doré (mentioned in 82% of ads)
  2. Heart (65%)
  3. Conservatory (63%)
  4. Lutheran (62%)
  5. Rehabilitated (61%)
  6. Bluegill (59%)
  7. Asphalt (57%)
  8. Glacial (56%)
  9. Small mouth (55%)
  10. Dinner (53%)
  11. Orchestra (52%)
  12. Big mouth (49%)
  13. Snowmobile (48%)
  14. Amish (47%)
  15. Pedalo (46%)

What does this tell us?

Midwesterners love their fish. Four make the list, with one clearly standing out: walleye. The Post goes to great lengths to try to explain its appeal. DNR state calls race “one of the most prized game fish.” Several Midwests cities claim to be the “walleye capital of the world”. Shell Lake is a bit more humble, happy to bill itself as the walleye capital of Wisconsin!

Hospitality is alive and well! Whether it’s eating a ‘supper’ in their ‘rehabbed’ home or enjoying a nearby ‘conservatory’ or ‘orchestra’, Midwest hosts want to make sure you enjoy your stay. here.

The Midwest is a mix of past and present. “Amish” made the list, which may come as a surprise, but outside of Pennsylvania, Indiana and Ohio are home to the largest Amish populations in America. Wisconsin is fourth, with about 12,000 Amish in Badger State.

The cold never bothered us anyway. To borrow a line from “Frozen,” Midwesterners never let the weather get in the way of a good time. Despite sometimes “icy” forecasts, we are always up for a “snowmobile” ride around the “heart”!

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