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A Brief History of the Great Boarder War - Chap. 3.2

By Jay C. Lorenz - February 1, 2004
Of the entire world's conflicts, perhaps the most misunderstood is the ongoing battle that we know too well as The Great Border War. In an effort to promote world peace, and because I am apparently short of entertainment, I have conducted considerable research into this chasm and as an amateur historian I feel compelled to offer up the benefit of my findings for all. Some of you may wonder "why should I care about the analysis of an AMATEUR?" and I appreciate this question. I was once a professional, with a thriving history shop in Tupelo, Mississippi. Unfortunately, the recession of 1981, coupled with a regrettable scandal over the correct spelling of Czechoslovakia, left me destitute and reduced to pursuing my other marketable talent; delivering Domino's Pizza in the greater Tupelo metropolitan area.

For those of you who are too young to know, The Great Border War involves the cultural divide that centers itself over the arbitrary borderline drawn between the States of Illinois and Wisconsin. Some ignorant individuals may claim that there are other conflicts of greater importance. I have even heard rumors of a squabble between New York and New Jersey. However, more careful research has led to the following observations. New York is a long ways away, and who cares about New Jersey anyway? If we were to waste our time wondering over a boring state, we would wonder over Indiana which is at least as boring and a whole lot closer. Also, it is an indisputable fact that both are "New," so obviously our war is older, more important, better, and in a word "Great."

James A. Michener was a famous amateur historian in his own right. He would start a rendition of this dispute by reciting detailed accounts of the geological formation of the area, the faunas, the flowing waters, the placid lakes, the fishes and animals, and the meteorological symmetry of the passing seasons over eons and eons. I myself am not that ambitious and will spare us all maybe two or three hundred pages of real crap by jumping right to the crux of the Great Border War.

Chapter Three (.2)

Each summer, a great naval battle is held as well. Both the Illinois American and Wisconsin American forces utilize watercraft that can be loosely categorized into one of five distinct categories:

First is the generic 20-year-old rowboat. Rowboats are generally occupied by an owner who is too poor to own a real boat. Occupants, embarrassed at their obvious display of poverty, pretend to be a well-equipped fishing vessel, and display a salty attitude towards all nearby watercraft including other rowboats. Rowboats are used as coastal patrol craft.

Next is the modern fishing boat. Modern fishing boats require a second mortgage to own, will easily outrun an '83 Dodge pickup, and possess enough electronic devices that locating the Titanic with one is mere child's play. These are the battle cruisers.

The third group is the Jet Ski. Driven by daring young men of questionable ability to pass mandatory urine screening, the Jet Ski owes its development to Japanese Asians. Borrowing from the kamikaze heritage of WWII, and the fact that they lost, the Japanese Asians cheerfully supply Americans of every heritage with these human torpedoes.

Fourth is the water ski boat. No one has found a genuine use for the water ski boat other than to fill them up with college girls in bikinis and motor around the waters recklessly drinking beer. Their primary offensive weapons system consists of attempting to launch a "boogie board" occupant towards the enemy. This is done when a coed bikini clad weapons officer gives the signal to fire by offering to let the driver do a "belly shot." Properly timed, a water ski boat will easily take out a rowboat, and is the aircraft carrier of inland waterways.

Last is the pontoon boat, or "party barge." Slightly smaller than an ocean going tanker and only slightly faster than a rowboat, the pontoon boat can hold half a casino's worth of geriatrics, their combined offspring, and a relative horde of grandchildren and various and sundry other minors from the neighborhood. Supplied with kegs of beer, a bar capable of issuing forth several hundred old fashioned (brandy or whiskey, sweet or sour), eighteen cases of Mountain Dew, play floats, cribbage boards, an integral head and changing room, they are formidable. If stocked from a fireworks stand, be it French European American, Native American, or Korean Asian American, the party barge appearing on the horizon should be regarded with the same respect afforded a pirate ship. These are landing craft.

The typical course of a naval battle is difficult to recite for written dialogue. The rules of engagement are less clearly defined than the land battles of the fall. And the season is longer.

As the Great Boarder War continues into this century and the next, there will be many more great tales of adventure, conflict and conquest. I hope that I have helped shed a ray of light of the untold history of the Great Boarder War.

Author Jay C. Lorenz

Jay C. Lorenz
Jay C. Lorenz was once a professional historian, with a thriving history shop in Tupelo, Mississippi. Unfortunately, the recession of 1981, coupled with a regrettable scandal over the correct spelling of Czechoslovakia, left Jay destitute and reduced to pursuing his other marketable talent; delivering Domino's Pizza in the greater Tupelo metropolitan area.
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