When I grew up our small town had what was known as a “sister city.” Ours was in Mexico but other communities had sister cities all over the world, the idea being that by exchanging delegations we could all spread goodwill and learn something too. I don’t know if towns still do this and with all the terrorism around the world it’s probably not advisable. Instead, I think small towns in America ought to exchange visits with huge cities in our own country so they might see how we live, and vice versa.
Here are a few pairings that might prove interesting.
Philadelphia/San Angelo, TX – Other than introducing the Texans to thugs and cheese steak sandwiches, I really don’t think the Texans would benefit by the exchange. But the Texans could sure teach their Philly sisters a thing or two. Like how to make sweet tea and chicken fried steak. And that real football is played on Friday nights! The delegates from Philly would soon learn that A.I. stands for artificial insemination, not Allen Iverson, and that they can get a better sandwich at K-Bobs than from a greasy cart on the mean streets of Philadelphia.
Seattle/Prescott, AZ – The Arizona delegation would learn how to make coffee and program computers. In Seattle’s liberal coffee shops the desert rats would learn about political correctness and how to save endangered species. In Prescott the Seattle-lites would learn how to team rope, drag Main Street and buy a bull. The northern liberals would soon find that animals can take care of themselves and instead they’d better be watching out for mountain lions and rattlesnakes. The Prescottonian’s new friends would learn that daylight savings time doesn’t cause or cure global warming and a real breakfast includes bacon and eggs. And sausage won’t kill you.
San Francisco/Hickman, NE – If the Cornhuskers took a trip to the City by the Bay they’d teach the natives what 4H and the FFA stand for, how to stage a tractor pull, how comfortable a pair of overalls can be, and where their food comes from. In return they’d see things they’ve never seen before except on Halloween.
Atlantic City/Paso Robles, CA – The mobsters from Jersey would teach the prunies how to drive in snow and that it’s not safe to ask too many questions. In this cultural exchange the folks from back east just might learn how to clean a fish, hunt animals, and exercise without going to a gym. They’d get a lesson on how to make hay, overhaul a tractor, stage a country fair and pump a septic tank too.
New York/Bonesteel, SD – In New York the Dakotans would learn how to survive a mugging in a subway. They’d also discover how to tell a cab driver who speaks no English where to go. They’ll learn how to pass time in a traffic jam and how to pay $500 a night for a motel room. The haughty New Yorkers might think they’re teaching the hicks from the country how to live amidst lawlessness, danger and fear but the good folks from Bonesteel know all about family reunions. The New Yawkers, on their western sojourn, would learn that a grain elevator is not a conveyance for moving people, and that there is actually a beautiful sunset hiding behind their skyscrapers. They’d be introduced to fresh air and they might even learn how to wave at people with all their fingers, and how to say “please” and “thank you.”
Washington D.C./Holyoke, CO (With apologies to Holyoke) – Small town America could teach our nation’s Capital, its Congressmen, and all the bureaucrats who reside there a thing or two. Like how to make an honest living instead of mooching off the rest of us. Hopefully, the folks from Holyoke might introduce our leaders to something called the Constitution. Judging by the legislator’s actions lately they must never have heard of it. As for what the Coloradans will get out of the deal? Well, they might enjoy visiting their money.
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