License Plates!

Robert Masterson
2 min read
License Plates!
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I guess I first noticed the trend when Pennsylvania replaced the state motto (“The Keystone State”) on its license plates with the depressing “WWW.STATE.PA.US.” A freaking website ad on the license plate. New Hampshire has kept the coolest state motto ever (“Live Free Or Die’) which is a hell of a thing to put on a car but snappy enough for Bruce Willis to steal. New Mexico is still “The Land of Enchantment” and that’s just charming. It also lends itself to much alteration (“Land of Entrapment” springs to mind but I’m sure there are about a million other twists on the phrase). New York remains “The Empire State” but nobody really knows what the hell that means because they have a governor and not an emperor. Hawaii has been and will always be “The Aloha State.” Arizona is “The Grand Canyon” state and Colorado lets its plate’s striking graphic speak for itself. Utah’s plate proclaims “Greatest Snow on Earth” which is a sort of pathetic way of saying, “Please ignore all the other stuff that makes this state one of the stupidest places on Earth and just ski.” Virginia has a simple “1607 – 400th Anniversary – 2007” running across the bottom of the plate though they must be applauded for dropping the white-on-black color scheme over 30 years ago and voting for Obama this year. At least they aren’t trying to hype that “Virginia is for Lovers” crap. Ohio claims to be the “Birthplace of Aviation” because the Wright Brothers were born there, laughed at, and moved the show to North Carolina (“First in Flight”). Always a little tension between those two states and it’s nice to see it played out on the plates. New Jersey has, almost certainly, the most paradoxical of license plates proclaiming itself the “Garden State” while simultaneously producing the most toxins per square foot of land for, like, centuries. Anyway, if you’re interested in such things, check out this site. And write a letter to the Pennsylvania Department of Motor Vehicles and tell them what lame-assed weaklings they are for replacing their state motto with a pop-up ad.

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