Stampede redneck

This shot from 2014 is all you need to know about Country Stampede.

Rivers and stars. An apple. Maybe some hills.

That’s what the finalists for the city flag include.

Fine and dandy. Sure. But also boring. B-O-R-I-N-G.

Herewith, as The Curmudgeon, I’d like to submit a few additional concepts to consider:

• 1. The beached riverboat. Manhattan exists because some settlers in 1855, trying to get farther up the Kansas River to about where Junction City now sits, hit a sandbar. After mucking around awhile, they evidently said something along the lines of, “Whelp, this is good enough, I guess,” and stayed here instead.

Wouldn’t that make a great civic motto, too? If we wanted it to sound fancy, we could translate it into Latin. “Not quite to the stars due to some technical difficulties.” Has a familiar ring.

• 2. A living room filled with knee-deep water. Some smartasses over by Garden Way a few years back put up signs: “Waterfront property!” Might as well extend that concept a little.

We live in a valley, where the Blue meets the Kansas, and Wildcat Creek feeds in. We keep flooding, nearly every year, and we’ve got this massive reservoir within a few inches of inundating some subdivisions.

• 3. A drunk redneck in a trailer. This was an actual picture that ran in the Mercury a few years back. I don’t know who it is, and it doesn’t matter if he was either drunk or a redneck. The boots, the cutoffs, the speakers — this is all you need to know about Country Stampede.

Dunno. Maybe we should farm this off to #topcity now. They’re in the market for a new flag, and they are now the host to the Heartland St--. Still can’t say it.

• 4. OK, seriously now: I’ve been partial to “Keep Manhattan Real,” or something along those lines. If there’s one thing about Manhattan that stands out, it’s that there’s not a lot of posing or image-conscious malarkey. That theme echoes “Keep Austin Weird,” and there’s something about it that just rings true, even to a curmudgeon.

Maybe especially to a curmudgeon.

I know they want just pictures, no words, and so that one won’t become the city flag. But it ought to surface on T-shirts or bumper stickers or on those things kids stick on their laptops now.

Seaton is Mercury publisher and editor in chief.

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