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Jack (Who is called Jack) 'Ohian' funnies - for 'Spaw (43) RE: 'Ohian' funnies - for 'Spaw 13 Oct 99


Ah my wonderful home of Ohio, the Riviera....of West Virginia.

Thing about Ohio is that its cities belie its true heart, which is found in a seemingly endless list of small towns scattered about its interior.

Like Zoar, one time home of the Zoarites, a religious communal society. They segregated living arrangements by gender (all but the leader and his wife-fancy that) and followed a policy of strict celibacy for all for the first decade of the communities exsistence. Reasoned that they couldn't waste time and energy on sex and children until the settlement was well established. Somehow the movement ran into trouble keeping up its population. Imagine that.

Then there's Bucyrus, the bratwurst captital of the midwest.

Then there are the fairly extensive Amish and Mennonite communities.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Worlds largest college town notwithstanding, it is a very fundamentalist, and very conservative state.

Akron, once the rubber city, has become the Televangelism Capital of America, having spawned both Rex Humbard AND Ernest Angeley. Story about Humbard. Like his slick haired bretheren, he tried to build one of his own ostentatious cathedrals outside Akron. The plans included a central tower with a rotating restaurant and observation deck ala the Niagra Falls Skylon. Well they built the central pillar only to find that a) they had run out of money, b) the design of the tower was flawed and they couldn't put the top on the thing anyway, and c) they couldn't tear it down without destroying the already completed cathedral, office, and restaurant complexes it was built over. You have to see this thing to understand what an eyesore it is. A round, grey-brown concrete pillar, the size of a large smokestack, with some bare girders protruding from the top. The thoroughly chagrined locals have taken to calling it Rex's Erection, with very little fondness, even though it now belongs to Earnest, who bought Rex out.

In all fairness, Ohio is also the cradle of a great deal of traditional music, especially songs about river and canal life, and life on the Great Lakes Shipping lanes. Its also where Johnathan Chapman did a great deal of his life's work.

And most don't realize it, but at the time it was coined, the phrase 'Go west young man', was not about crossing the Mississippi, but an admonition to go find your fortune in Ohio. Like most, I'm still looking.


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