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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Bad water runs up- and downhill -- toward Illinois?

We Wisconsin rats love to poke fun at our ratty brothers and sisters to the south, in Illinois. Despite the family rivalries, we stay in close touch.

They tell us about some strange human traditions in Illinois, particularly in that rat-heaven city of Chicago. (Rats used to thrive in the rivers there, when they dumped meat packing plant offal and raw sewage right into the river.)

But here's the strange tradition they told us about: apparently they dye the Chicago River GREEN on St. Patrick's Day.

We've also learned that here in Wisconsin, the governor wants to put more money into tourism promotion -- get more people to come here to go boating and skiing and fishing and stuff, the kind of things humans spend a pile of money on and do twice a year.

Here's the Rat's suggestion for the Wisconsin governor: given all this talk about water in Wisconsin going bad by going green (You haven't seen yet? Check it out:, why not put that tourism promotion money into a billboard campaign?

Put up 30 billboards all over Chicagoland, or run a few TV spots, with pictures of Wisconsin rivers and lakes that "go green" with no dyes, no paints, no taints or tinctures. Tell them to come on up to Wisconsin, where the green in the water is "natural" (it's just a little pollution).

Wisconsin Dept. of Tourism, here's a suggested slogan for the billboard campaign:

Make St. Patrick's Day Last All Summer! Come to Wisconsin Where the Green in Our Water is the Real Thing

And here's some copy for you for the TV spot:

"Tired to fighting Loop traffic just to see a green river once a year on St. Patrick's Day? Flee to Wisconsin, where green water lasts all summer! Unlike the fake green in the Chicago River, this green water gets so thick you can stir it with a stick -- great interactive fun for the kids! Some of it even turns a blue-green color. (Disclaimer: this water could be toxic.) And you'll find those friendly folks in Wisconsin will welcome you with open arms: they won't go in that water, so you don't have to worry about big crowds and traffic jams!"

The Rat welcomes any and all suggestions from readers that we will send to the Wisconsin tourism people promoting our green water to Flatlanders.

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