Sunday's News-Leader includes the Mike O'Brien column, left-side anchor of the features section.
Always eagle-eyed Smitty alerted us to the headline of the Nov. 7 OB column -- a hed destined for the No-Sh!t Sherlock Hall of Fame:
New England vistas offer many sights unseen in Ozarks
In other news, it gets dark at night.
Got a chuckle out of this. I find it fascinating that he's extolling the virtues of the North East over the Ozarks, claiming that the North East isn't as overcommercialized as the Ozarks.
First and foremost, as someone who has spent a fair amount of time in Vermont and Maine, they're far more economically challenged than you lot in the Ozarks...which may account for the lack of billboards. Certainly, Vermont is better off than Maine, but this is an area whose major economic driving forces are tourism and maple sugar.
And yes, Vermont is a beautiful place. One of the most beautiful places this country has to offer. But as bad as Ozark winters are, you sure as HELL wouldn't want to spend a winter in Vermont.
The point of O'Brien's column was likely, "Hey, here's a cool vacation spot where you can get away from your ordinary life in Springfield." Okay, point taken. But don't insinuate one is better than the other. Apples to Oranges. But since he did it, I'm a gonna to...
First and foremost you cannot, no matter how hard you try, get a decent glass of "iced tea" in the North East. I CHALLENGE you to go into a restaurant and even get the beverage without having to explain yourself. If you just ask for tea, you're getting a little steaming cup of Lipton's, not a thirst quenching glass of it.
Secondly, North Easterners have no clue what grits are and they certainly don't know how to cook up good catfish.
Hillbilly speak is far more lyrical and easy to understand than what equates to the English language any where past New York. Imagine yourself in one long and unending Pepperidge Farm commercial. Oh yeah, you'll remember.
And by far the worst transgression of all: you cannot get a Taylor's Hamburger in Vermont.
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