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13 Things You Never Say in Albuquerque

There are some things you just don't say in Albuquerque. Here's a start.

"Which way is east?"

The Sandias give everyone a sense of direction, so there's no need to ask which way is north, south, east or west.

"How about those Aggies?"

The rivalry between the University of New Mexico Lobos and the New Mexico State Aggies has been called the "Battle of the I-25" and the "Rio Grande Rivalry." Whatever it's called, there are far fewer fans of Pistol Pete in the Q than there are of the Lobos.

"The eastside is better than the westside"

Or the other way around, unless you want to start a war.

"What's a Zia?"

The Zia can be found on everything from tattoos to donuts.

"I prefer Santa Fe"


Albuquerqueans sometimes refer to Santa Fe as Fanta Se. We pride ourselves on our city not being a tourist trap. 

"We have the worst sunsets"

Flickr/Todd Shoemake

Albuquerque has spectacular sunsets. Yes, it's because of all the dirt in the atmosphere, but who cares? We also have our fair share of double rainbows.

"I'll take some chile sauce, please"

Flickr/Greg Holland

It's chile. Period.

"That was some earthquake/tsunami/three inches of rain"

Although it's not an impossibility, the chances of a large earthquake here are rare. We also don't experience heavy downpours and there's no ocean nearby for a fatal tsunami.

"Chipotle has the BEST New Mexican food"

Albuquerque's mom and pop New Mexican restaurants provide the city with a variety of places to enjoy enchiladas, burritos and huevos. Be sure to acknowledge them before saying you like Chipotle--if you dare say it at all. 

"People here drive so well"

In actuality, it's pretty common to wonder about the driver in the other lane. 

"The chile is too hot"

We can deal with a little heat in the Q.

"There are orange barrels here?"

Aileen O'Catherine

Road construction is always happening. Everywhere, it seems.

"What's the Balloon Fiesta like?"

Flickr/Mark Tyra

We know because we go every year, and many of us have more than a few thousand photographs.