Friday, August 13, 2010


Like most places, Michigan has its fair share of weirdos. In fact, writing about and appreciating weirdos is one of my favorite things to do. Weirdos are wonderful people who typically happen to love one thing or category of things so much, they distance themselves from the rest of the regulars. Weirdos enable non-weirdos to define themselves as regulars only because weirdos do exist. They serve many important purposes.

Today on Hardball with Chris Matthews, Chris Matthews was doing a profile piece on a southeastern Michigan militia group. These people use their free time in the winter out in the woods training in survival tactics in preparations for the Y3K computer bug that will inevitably prevent sliding doors from opening correctly. They also do other things like arm themselves for, among reasons, protecting themselves against the tyranny of the United States government. Homegrown militias have been common in Michigan for years and they tend to cover the complete spectrum of crazy. Because they are so out there, major media outlets like television news frequently do stories on these many groups of weirdos, highlighting without any effort how insane they truly are (no effort is required because you really just need to put group representatives on TV, ask them regular questions, and then wait for the inevitable wacky).

Even though I tend not to agree with their politics (or, more broadly, general view of the world), I continue to welcome all groups of weirdos who choose to call Michigan home. We need every last person we can get. However, my one request is that they apply the smallest degree of effort to stop being so weird so very conspicuously. It's like they can't help themselves - "Hey, we're crazy. We spend winter free time preparing for the end of the world and we do it in MICHIGAN." The problem with this is that it is another one of those instances in which people from elsewhere will have no choice but to assume that many of the people in this fine state are as nuts as state militia members. This really isn't the case - just no one will put me on TV for laying on the couch, eating dinner at Macaroni Grill, and watching television. Believe me, I've tried. Name of my show - "World's Worst Reality Show"

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