Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Back East

I was walking in my parent's neighborhood in Houston on Thanksgiving.  With my friend from 'up north' or maybe he's from 'back east' but definitely not from 'down east' which I understand is actually further north than 'up north.'  To be honest, here in Houston which is both 'down south' and 'out west'  (unless you're from California in which case they are definitely 'back east') they really don't  have a clear concept of either 'east' or 'north'.  They get 'west' but believe that once you get to California you're really 'back east.'  Go figure.

Now in Missouri we have a much more mature perspective on dealing with relative locations.  But it wasn't always easy for us being trapped in the middle of the nation.  For a long time we fought about whether we were in the upper south or the southwest but then when we didn't secede we succeeded in getting ourselves thrown out of the south.  Which put us in the north by default except the people back east said that they were from the north and therefore we were from the west.  Which was fine because when the seceding south didn't succeed we got to stay west which we always understood to be 'cool'.  But then one day California became west which we got but then Texas said they were west too despite being south which frankly irritated us because they're a bunch of cocky bastards who are always doing stuff like that.  So in response, we invented 'mid' as in midwest.  But then the midwest got rust on its belt and we decided that we didn't want to be rusty so we kept the mid- and swapped America for west as in Mid-America.  Which sounds a lot like Central America which is really Mexico, not to be confused with Mexico, Missouri.  So when the press started worrying about Cuba, not to be confused with Cuba, Missouri making Central America go communist, we got a bit worried about our image and finally decided to do away with the relative location hooey altogether.

So now all we ever say is that 'We're here.  You're not.  Get over it.'

Which will work until the aliens come.  So if you're on your planet and I'm on your planet which is not my planet which means that I am 'off' my planet but 'on' yours, what happens when you and I leave your planet? Do you go 'off' planet while I go 'off', 'off' planet?  And when we come back to your planet do you go 'on' planet while I go 'on-off' planet?  And where is off-Broadway in all of this?


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