State vs. State: Idaho
It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these State vs. State entries. For this one, I’m comparing New Jersey to the great mediocre state of Idaho! Though I had originally intended to start out with those states closest to the Armpit of America, I realized that strategy would leave me with a whole bunch of big, blocky, boring states out west. To prevent this from happening, I figured I might as well get a head start. So I decided to go with the most boring of all.
Let’s start by discussing Idaho’s most famous, if not only, export. The potato. Everyone seems to make a big deal about Idaho potatoes, but are they really that much better than potatoes grown anywhere else? I highly doubt it. Besides, who would even be able to tell anyway? I mean, no one eats a potato straight up. We fry them, mash them, cover them with butter, sour cream, cheese, and bacon. It doesn’t matter where a potato is grown; they just serve as a base for salt and grease.
New Jersey’s produce, on the other hand, is something special; we aren’t called the Garden State for nothing. Though people may mock the fact that such a disgusting state has a nickname like that, it is well deserved. New Jersey’s corn and tomatoes are legendary. And they can be eaten on their own, unlike those overrated and worthless Idaho potatoes.
Now let’s talk about celebrities. Perhaps the most well-known people to have anything to do with Idaho is that crazy Bruce Willis – Demi Moore – Ashton Kutcher love triangle. Willis and Moore bought their home in Idaho a while back in order to escape from the paparazzi. This was a pretty smart decision, because who in their right mind would go to Idaho? At the same time, Willis and Moore, and now Kutcher, give the state a much needed higher profile. Especially since the only other celebrities to have roots in the state is that guy who does the voice of Patrick on Spongebob Squarepants and the woman who played Mary Ann on Giligan’s Island.
Meanwhile, New Jersey is like a breeding ground for celebrities. Buzz Aldrin, Kirsten Dunst, Danny DeVito, and Lauryn Hill all emerged from the Armpit of America, and those people are just from our B-list!
Celebrities aside, let’s look at the two states’ places in pop culture. There have been countless movies and TV shows that take place and/or were filmed in New Jersey. Idaho’s contribution to pop culture? Napoleon Dynamite. Though a superb movie that offers a rare glimpse into everyday life in the state, I don’t think it can handle the burden of being Idaho’s one pop culture icon. Then again, there is a movie called Twin Falls, Idaho, but this film gives the impression that everyone in that state is either a conjoined twin or a prostitute. Of course, this may be true. I’ve never been to Idaho, so I’ll have to assume that’s the case until proven otherwise.
Although Napoleon Dynamite did give Idaho a brief moment in the sun, the state also got some attention a few years ago when one of its senators was involved in a gay sex scandal. While New Jersey hasn’t been immune to this, at least our gay sex scandal politician, former governor Jim McGreevey, had the balls to admit everything and come out of the closet. Meanwhile, former Idaho senator Larry Craig denies everything and said he was set up. Because when you go into a public bathroom and try to engage a police officer in sexual acts, it’s always someone else’s fault. So at least New Jersey’s closeted public officials have some integrity.
As you can see, New Jersey is better than Idaho in every way imaginable. Sure, it wasn’t much of a contest. However, I’m feeling generous and have decided to give the people of Idaho some suggestions on how to make their state a little better. After taking the following steps, you just might be able to hold your own against New Jersey.
• Have MTV film a trashy reality show in your state. I’ll even give you the perfect title: “Ida-hos”…or maybe “Boise Meets Girl.”
• The whole potato thing is getting old. Start growing something more interesting, like gooseberries or rhubarb.
• Make a sequel to Napoleon Dynamite (please!!!).
• Allow yourselves to be dissolved and annexed by your neighboring states. That way, we could have cool-sounding states like Montida and Udaho.