Let’s get this party started

By Mike Murphy

I don’t know about you, but I was personally insulted by the recently published list of most boring cities in eastern Idaho.  Just think about how terrible it must make those poor people feel who have to live in one of those towns to see its name on the list.  Especially since those folks are already so bored out their skulls that it’s feasible this news could push them to the point that the entire population would join hands and jump into the Snake River, having failed to notice that it’s all frozen over.

I have to admit that if I have ever been to Ammon I was not aware of it at the time and have no idea where it is located, so initially I could see why it was rated the #1 most boring city in the state.  However, after a quick look at the city’s website it’s easy to see that Ammon is anything but boring.  First thing one sees on the site is a picture of a large freshly dug trench for a new water pipe which I’m sure is just one of the city’s many tourist attractions —and the picture is even in color!

Plus, you’ll discover that the town offers free ice skating for two winter months.  For fun the other ten months, large crowds gather around the city pond anxiously awaiting the Arrival of the Ice each December. Once word spreads that the ice has arrived, the entire town of Ammon goes crazy with excitement, culminating in the crowd pleasing “Cracking the Coccyx” contest, a figure skating competition for beginners.  Winners are honored with a trophy and a gift certificate good at any of the local chiropractors.

Next was Blackfoot that came in as the sixth most boring city.  It’s obvious to me that the folks doing the ratings have never visited this vibrant city located just ten miles west of Firth—a town founded in 1885 by Ezekiel First who had a noticeable lisp.  Blackfoot hosts the Eastern Idaho State Fair where you can see rabbits that look like they ate an entire carrot patch, pigs that look like they ate the rabbits, and people who look like they ate one too many chocolate dipped raspberry cream cheese brownies.

Even more impressive than the fair, Blackfoot is also home to the Idaho Potato Museum.  Here you can visit the Potato Hall of Fame honoring such luminaries as James “Hash” Brown, Spuds Mackenzie, and Mr. Potato Head.

You can buy souvenirs at the Museum including a Darth Tater t-shirt and Potato Lip Balm which must be like kissing two greasy potato wedges.  They even have potato cooking suggestions like how to select the best potato: “Select loose potatoes that are well formed, smooth, firm …”  Whoa, whoa, stop right there.  I’m not sure where this is going, but this happens to be a family newspaper.

Finally, if Blackfoot is so boring then why did the city make the national news this past summer during Blackfoot Pride Days when a pilot missed his mark and dropped 3,000 ping pong balls on Interstate 15, sending hundreds of people scrambling to retrieve the balls, dodging deadly traffic, so that they could win free candy, creating Blackfoot’s own version of The Hunger Games!

Rexburg is listed as the ninth most boring city which is probably based on the fact that the local college does not have football or basketball teams; thus, the ratings people feel that the school’s students lack fun stuff to do in the winter.  Nothing could be further from the truth as can be seen by simply visiting the city’s website. For example the recreation guide located there pictures a girl with her tongue stuck to an icy pole!  And that’s just the beginning of endless activities available in this winter wonderland.  To top it off, during the Winter Snow Fest there is something called Snow Graffiti writing, and if the frat boys use what I think they use, that in itself makes Rexburg a pretty wild and crazy city!

Closer to home, the ratings people listed Chubbuck in the ten most boring Idaho cities. Apparently, they never checked the Chubbuck police log.  If they had, they would have discovered that recently there were three “following too close” citations issued to drivers—in the same month!

Naturally, if the residents living in any of these so-called “boring” eastern Idaho cities want some real action they can always drive over to Pocatello, the recently proclaimed most exciting city in Idaho.  Here they can visit the Museum of Clean, not to be confused with the house my son and his two buddies and three dogs use to live in, known as the Museum of Dirty.

By the way, the Museum of Clean contains the world’s largest vacuum collection—and I hear it really sucks.

Mike Murphy of Pocatello retired after a 35-year teaching and coaching career.  He has a master’s degree in English from the University of Nebraska and is an Associated Press award-winning columnist.