We’re a proud bunch, us Leeds folk, and although we’re the friendliest people in the world (fact), we’re also not that difficult to irritate. There are buttons to push when it comes to annoying a Loiner, and these are just a selection.
1. Have a go at the accent
We’re sure this extends to any city bearing a strong regional accent, but there’s something about hearing a Southener mumbling “Ey up, how’s thee t’neet lad?” that has been known to result in low-level violence.
2. Be from Lancashire
You’re the folk from across the hills we all love to hate, and it’s not just a Leeds thing. From Pontefract to Preston, from Barnsley to Bolton, there’s a Yorkshire/Lancashire rivalry in everyone that will always run deep.
3. Be from the south
It’s almost worse than being a Lanky. Look, you all drink shandy, you don’t know what rugby league is and you think EastEnders is better than Emmerdale. We’re sure you’re all lovely people really, but it’s like you’re trying to irritate us.
4. Tell us our music is rubbish
Without our fine city, there’d be no Kaiser Chiefs, Pigeon Detectives, Sunshine Underground, Soft Cell, The Sunshine Underground, The Sisters of Mercy and, erm, The Spice Girls wouldn’t have been quite so scary. Not to mention The Who’s ‘Live at Leeds’ album, which was recorded at Leeds University in 1970.
5. Ask us why we’re not wearing a flat cap
Leeds is different to the Yorkshire Dales. Travel far enough into the green and admittedly, everybody does begin to look like an extra from Last of the Summer Wine, but in Leeds we’ve got a Topshop and everything.
6. Have a go at the football team
Sure, Leeds United have been on the raw end of the deal for over a decade now, but mark our words they will be back where they belong.
7. Ask if it’s always cold
OK, it’s usually cold. But Leeds isn’t in the Arctic. During the Summer we get at least two weeks of sun, and around four days of those are actually quite warm.
8. Forget that we’re the kings of ale
It’s very much the in thing to have craft ale pumped out of every bar orifice nowadays, but these new fangled breweries from here there and everywhere are very much the young pretenders. Sure, Tetley’s moved to Nottingham, but you can keep your London brewed strawberry stout, it’s Ilkley Brewery for me.
9. Tell us you had a friend that came to uni here
Yeah, not exciting. Everyone comes to uni in Leeds, and with three ever-expanding universities, those numbers are only going to increase. Because it’s awesome. In all seriousness, you’d be particularly hard pushed to find someone who doesn’t have a friend who went to uni in Leeds.
10. Don’t thank the bus driver
Yes, we’ve been told it’s a Northern thing, but seriously, if someone drives you somewhere, you thank them. It’s that simple – start doing it.
11. Ask if we have wine bars and stuff
Asked in the right tone of patronising, this question can literally cause steam to billow from a Loiner’s ears. Yes, we have wine bars. We’ve got also running water, electricity and have sometimes been known to use rudimentary tools.
12. Say the transport is rubbish
No, we don’t have a tube system, and no, we don’t have a tram line. But you know what? There’s something really rather charming about sitting next to the smelly chap on a delayed bus. We prefer it this way. Honest.
13. Eat your chips dry
What is everyone’s problem with the age-old combination of chips and gravy? That is how god intended for chips to be, brown and soggy, or at the very least, doused in curry sauce. Salt alone is not an option.
14. Ask where the comedy club is
We lost Jongleurs a couple of years ago, and for many of us, it’s very much an open wound. Comedy nights at various venues have filled the void to some extent, but just don’t go there.
15. Suggest it’s not the finest city in the world
Because it is.