A new holiday: Wear American DayPublished 9:06am Friday, August 26, 2011
Column: Between the Corn Rows
Not long ago some television humorist or newspaper columnist suggested that Americans should have a specific time to wear clothing made in this nation. I’m not sure what was proposed as an alternative. Maybe those folks who didn’t have American-made outer wear clothing might have to stay home on the occasion I’m calling Wear American Day.
Now it’s one thing for me to suggest this idea for others, and another thing to see how I’d fare in a Wear American Day challenge.
To do this I carefully checked the labels on 20 of my long-sleeve (cold weather and winter) shirts to see where they originated.
Here are the results: Five of the shirts were made in China and five more came from Bangladesh. Two each were created by cheap labor in Malaysia, Nicaragua and the Philippines. One each had labels based on their origins in El Salvador, Cambodia and Mongolia. That’s right, Mongolia.
There was one shirt with no indication as to where it was made. As far as I’m concerned, it could have been made here in the U.S. of A.
Then, to be more seasonal, I decided to check the origins of 20 of my short-sleeve shirts.
Here are the results: Seven of the shirts were made in Bangladesh, three came from Honduras and two originated in China. The rundown for the rest at one each were Indonesia, Pakistan, Korea, Nicaragua, Guatemala, hecho en Jordiania (Jordan), Nepal and the USA. That last one should make any potential Wear American Day label reader happy.
Three of the short-sleeve shirts had the obvious American brand name of Cherokee. However, the shirts actually originated in Honduras, Guatemala and Indonesia. Can the two words “low bidder” become a part of the narrative?
I also have a pair of shoes with the Cherokee brand name. I have no idea as to where those shoes were actually made.
I checked my pants and found one pair that said it was hecho en Mexico. Yet, the label or tag said those pants were made of American material or fabric. This is good enough for my version of Wear American Day.
In reality, I’m not sure if this holiday suggestion will become very practical under present circumstances. Maybe my backup alternative will work out better. It’s Eat American Time.
On Aug. 12 I attended the 2011 Relay for Life at the Freeborn County Fairgrounds. My base for this inspiring event was the location for Team Tribune. Yet, I had to contend with two challenges. One was to find a nearby place to park the car and the other was to locate the site for Team Tribune.
A day or two prior to that Friday evening someone said our tent would be on Machinery Hill. This eliminated nearly all the fairground property except for the area between the swine and livestock buildings and the beer garden structure. Then it was just a matter of climbing up the slope of Machinery Hill. (There’s a joke here, folks.)
About the only time the label of Machinery Hill is used locally comes during fair time. As indicated in last week’s commentary, I got to wondering where this designation originated
To do this, I checked with Google and found out the name Machinery Hill was first used at the Minnesota State Fair. Several decades ago this part of the St. Paul fairgrounds was the site of the world’s largest display of farm equipment.
At the present time the implement dealers are interested in displaying at more rural shows and fairs and the state fair site is used for urban and suburban types of equipment like cars, trucks, lawn mowers and motorbikes.
The name Machinery Hill eventually became a part of other farm sites and for a current musical group, according to Google.
With just three exceptions, Ed Shannon’s column has been appearing in the Tribune every Friday since December 1984.