Come For The Cheesesteaks, Stay For The Potholes

February ROFL Award


I mean...

Hello there!

Pleased to meet you!

My name is Pennsylvania.

I’ve been getting a lot of bad press recently on account of, you know, that big snow storm and the ice and the three major interstates being closed down and trapping hundreds of motorists in their freezing cars for a day and a night and a day. Or so.

And I just wanted to take a few minutes to first apologize…


and then do a better job of introducing myself.

How yous guys doin'!

I’m a lovely state, really.

I have purple mountains and crystal lakes. I have yummy chocolate-themed amusement parks and great big river down my middle that's just dandy for meandering along in an inner tube on a warm summer's day. I even have a small slice of shoreline along one of the Great Lakes! For you hunters and fishers, I have fields and streams a plenty. And if city lights and fine dining are your fancy, well sir, I’ve got world class cities propping up both my eastern and western borders in just the precise spots to help keep you from ending up in New Jersey or Ohio.

I mean, you don’t want to go to New Jersey.

What’s New Jersey got that I don’t got?

Nuthin’ that’s what.

Oh sure, there’s The Shore. But it ain’t much of a shore, let me tell you. They don’t even call it a shore. They call it a “sure”. Who wants to go swimming at a “sure”? If you ask me, Jersey Sure sounds suspiciously like Jersey Sewer. In fact, I once heard that if you go sea bathing at Atlantic City, you might find yourself swimming alongside old syringes and other medical waste from New York’s Fresh Kills Landfill. Like, this one kid I know was down the shore one year, and he was bodysurfing, and he, like, kept feeling little fish bumping up against his legs. Except when he finally landed on the beach and took a look around him, it wasn’t little fish bumping up against his legs. It was, like, a bunch of used gall bladders.

I swear it’s true.

And Ohio? I mean, whatever. If you really want to go play with Ohio, go knock yourself out. Ohio has no hills at all so you can’t even go sledding. And in the summer, all there is to do is walk around kicking cans or maybe hang out at the 7-Eleven. Don’t even get me started on Cleveland's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. First of all, how is Miles Davis in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and Witness - the most awesome rock band ever on the face of the planet - hasn’t even been nominated yet? (Ohmigod, Billy Spence, the lead singer, was so dreamy!) Sure, Witness was mostly just a Jethro Tull-Billy Joel cover band, and they mostly just played down the Jersey Sewer. But the band also did a lot of gigs at Cardinal Brennan High School in Fountain Springs, PA, and I so own them.

But yeah, if you want to play with Ohio, be my guest. All I'm going to say is that one time Illinois told me that Scranton reminded him of Cleveland except with classier truck stops and better tasting kielbasa. And Scranton’s sitcom kicks Cincinnati’s sitcom’s ass any day, any year.

So hey!

Like the slogan says, You’ve Got A Friend In Pennsylvania!

I want to be your friend.

I’ll give you a piece of gum if you’ll be my friend.

Anyway, your mom says you have to play with me because I got all that important old-timey stuff in Philadelphia and in Gettysburg and it’s real important and you’re supposed to hang out with me and improve your mind. Your mom told my mom that you’re not allowed to play with California or Nevada anymore because you keep coming home smelling like wine and hookers. In Pennsylvania, you’re not even allowed to buy wine on a Sunday except for in specially run State Stores, and even then you have to prove that you’re at least 35 years old and were just attending church services. Where they were baptizing hookers.

Aw, c’mon!

Visit me!

I promise it’ll be fun!

Wanna see my broken nuclear reactor collection?

Ooh! Ooh! I know! Let’s go tip some Amish cows!


Be that way.

But if you don’t play with me, I’m not going to let you get to New York City.

Yeah, that’s right. Whaddaya gonna do now? Oooohhh, cut all the way through Maryland to get on I-95? You’ll never make the matinee showing of Spamalot.


I'm a nice state.

Wanna see my new puppy?

That’s right…just get on the I-78 entrance ramp.


I'll have you in The Big Apple in no time.


Oh, that’s just a little snow. A few flurries. We call them “fun flakes” here in Pennsylvania. Just a little something to add to the festival atmosphere of driving 75 miles per hour on a four-lane highway while double-trailer big rigs rumble by you at 95 miles an hour, clip your side-view mirror, and then suddenly swerve into your lane after jamming into first gear to make it up the next hill.

Whoops! Watch that black ice!

Looks like things are getting a bit hairy on the interstates again. Better pull off and let PennDOT get to work clearing the roads.

No, no! It won’t take long, I promise. Pinky swear.

Looky here! Why it’s a quaint little Pennsylvania Dutchy town. Just drive a bit down this back road toward the Hausselhoofen Diner and linger over a light dish of chicken croquettes a while. See that? I’m not so bad. Just a bit further down the road and you can bide your time with a quick dish of waffles and gravy and a slice of shoofly pie. Oh yeah, that's low fat. All PA Dutch cooking is low fat. Just around this bend, and then I’ll have you back on the Interstate in no…




Heh heh heh.

(Top photo: highway outside of Centralia, PA; Bottom photo: sinkhole on Rt. 924 Schuylkill County, PA.)


Anonymous said...

I have actually lived in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. Not all at the same time, of course.

Chicky Chicky Baby said...

OMG, this killed me! Very clever. And fun flakes? Har.

Anonymous said...

as a fellow pennsylvanian, i love this! as i told you before, trying to explain centralia to a kid is quite interesting....

Anonymous said...

Ah, Pennsylvania... you gotta love it. Thanks for the laugh! I'll definitely be sharing this blog with my friends and family.

Anonymous said...

great insight into PENNSYLTUCKY!!!(it was nice seeing the cars of people i know at the bottom of a hole on route 924). maybe something will be done to improve penndot's performance in the future. i thought the most interesting thing that was reported about this snowfall, was that penndot could not afford to pay overtime to clear it, because it would break the budget. i guess all the snow in november, december and january, took too much effort to clear. spark

Jess Riley said...

I love it. This inspires me to write a letter on behalf of Wisconsin, but it would pale in comparison to this one.

My state's new tourism slogan is, "Life's so good." Which beats the old slogan of, "Escape to Wisconsin (convicts)." But not by much.

rockygrace said...

Ha ha ha ha! Hilarious!

Julie Pippert said...

So a road trip this summer is out?

S said...

I enjoyed a weekend jaunt on many of Pennsylvania's loveliest roads (80, 81, 33, 78, and 457, which last I will never set wheels on again). The National Guard was even kind enough to facilitate my travel. You can read about it here, if you're so inclined. Suffice it to say, it was apocalyptic. Thank you, Pennsylvania, for getting my heart pumping at rates I never believed possible.

Anonymous said...

Texas ought to adopt the term "fun flakes". After all...that's about all we get.

Anonymous said...

How can you make states funny! A true talent. I am from Ohio, but transplanted to Texas, where we don't get enough "fun flakes." I have always lamented that a bit, until the past few weeks. You can keep the "fun flakes." "The Office" is about the only show, besides Reno 911 or The Daily Show/Stephen Colbert that is pee-in-your-pants funny.

anne said...

Ten to one mom still has the Witness t-shirt.

Probably right under the Super Chevy Sunday one.

Anonymous said...

OH MY GOD, Witness.It was such a coup having them play Brennan. I wish i still had my t-shirt! A

gingajoy said...

compared to Michigan, PA is frickin' LA. (Love the "it rubs lotion on its skin")

I cam here via Mom's Daily dose, and I saw your comment about the stirrup pants and tattoo, and I was all like teary eyed because I've not visited in SOOOO long.

so here I am. Hello! I am fine. How are you?

Debbie said...

that picture is mawful. (get it? I tied "maw" together with "aw...

um. *ahem*)

this post makes me weak in the knees for pennsyltucky.

that is all.

Ellie's Mommie said...

This still makes me laugh everytime I visit. I've never been to Pennsylvania, but I've read a lot about the underground fires at Centralia and other places and it freaks me out. I'll stick to tornado alley if you don't mind :)

Unknown said...

where'd you find the time to be so clever Miss I'm going stir crazy from all the frekin' snow days.

Her Bad Mother said...

Ummmmm... chocolate theme parks? Whuh? TRUE?

Gotta get my ass to PA.

Mom101 said...

Dear Pennsylvania,

So why is it that New Jersey drivers all have Pennsylvania plates these days?

NY who is happy to have your denizens visit me, but really wish they'd take the train.

Fairly Odd Mother said...

Hilarious! Glad you got the ROFL award so I could find this post (and your blog!). And, PA, don't forget Sesame Place! C'mon---almost like Disney but a lot wetter.

Mayberry said...

And remember those old license plates that said You've Got a Friend in... JESUS... Pennsylvania?

Yeah. Those were funny.

Michelle | Bleeding Espresso said...

I saw your link on another blog, and when I saw the title "Halushki," I had a clue where you might be from. Then I saw "boilo" in your sidebar, and here we have a picture of Centralia. Well, well, well....

Ciao from an MCA grad of Italian/Pennsylvania Dutch/Lithuanian descent. And please have a Mrs. T's for me :)

Anonymous said...

Hey just came across a Witness site put together by the band.

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