Tag Archives: America

The History of The Indoor Football League

“My boy plays in a football league!  He’s going to make it to the NFL one day, just like that Drew Brady!”

~The Mother of an Indoor Football League quarterback

ifl player

Two years ago, we talked about the American Indoor Football League, now just called “American Indoor Football”, a hilariously small, 10 team semi-professional football league that exists in such hotbed communities in dire need of a professional sports franchise such as Laurel, Maryland, the 25,000 population home of the defending AIFL champions, the Maryland Eagles.  We delved into the rich and honestly haphazard history of the league operating under the motto of “Fast Paced Family Fun” and gently prodded this league that probably doesn’t really need to exist.  We had a good time, and got to write about football in a way that doesn’t help Roger Goodell’s brand, so it really was a double win for us.

In a fit of nostalgia, we revisited this topic only to find that American Indoor Football is hardly alone in the field of “leagues of traveling semi-pro football teams getting paid peanuts to hit each other for the amusement of literally of dozens of fans.”  No, America is a land rich with high school varsity players just out of college desperate for a chance to relive their glory days, so we’re not content with simply one non-Arena-Football-League-knock-off.  And this week, we’re going to introduce you to three more.

That’s right, it’s National Professional American Indoor Football Week here in America (according to a sentence we just made up) so what better way to celebrate than to give three of these leagues (yup, we’ve got three distinct leagues here) their due, and introduce you to your new favorite teams to root for when your car breaks down in Sioux Falls and you just decide to shrug and start a new life there instead of paying for a new transmission.  First up—the inventively named Indoor Football League.

The History of The Indoor Football League

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The Toledo War: That One Time We Had States Go to War and Shoot at Each Other or Something

“No no no I want it I WANT IT!”

~Michigan and Ohio representatives

toledo strip

While we spend most of our time fixating on our general awesomeness, Americans often forget that we are one of the most diverse countries in the world, both ethnically and ideologically.  When you take a moment and consider the vast differences in language and  culture in Europe, it’s not surprising that individual states in America, which could fit most of Europe within its borders, might have some different views than their neighbors.  It’s why people from Massachusetts give New Yorkers a hard time, why most sports rivalries exist, and why if you put a Californian in a room with a Texan for thirty minutes, neither will emerge alive, sort of like putting two Siamese fighting fish in the same tank.

Now, we tend to dismiss rivalries between states because, in the grand scheme of thing, they’re just little local quirks of a particular part of the nation.  Take Michigan and Ohio, for example.  Those of you who follow College Football (read as: actual Americans) know that the University of Michigan and THE (ugh) Ohio State University have an institutionalized hatred for each other that most people reserve for the producers of the Twilight franchise.  If you met someone from Michigan or Ohio, you make some joke at the other state’s expense, and they’d roll their eyes and go, “Ugh, yeah, fuck those guys.”  That’s just how Americans identify with their local community, and it’s all in good fun.  Naturally, we try not to take this too far into “irrational grudges” territory, because that’s just counterproductive.  Ha, it’s not like we’ve ever had states go to war and shoot at each other or anything.

Oh wait, what’s that?  What are you doing, article title?

The Toledo War:  That One Time We Had States Go to War and Shoot at Each Other or Something

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The Funniest Names of American Towns

“Ha, look at these funny names.  At least I live somewhere with a normal and awesome name.”

~Residents of Manly, Iowa

accident sign

Names are a lot like metaphors—we’ve never successfully created one.  But, when we really think about it, our comfort with the names of most people, places, or things come from a level of familiarity—we don’t think twice about the name “Jonathan” but the first time some parents gave that name to their kid, they were probably viewed as whatever you’d call hippies during the Bible days.

The point being, names are weird, until you let yourself get used to them.  But sometimes, a name is just…well, weird, and no amount of time will make it seem normal.  This is especially true with certain towns you might find on the Wikipedia entry for “unusual place names.”  The fact is, you don’t see a lot of new towns sprout up that often, so most of the names we have are pretty much set in stone, and they’ve had time for us to adjust.  We talk about New York and never pause to think about Old York, we read about Chicago and never stop to think about how it’s really a gibberish word, and we only reference the fact that Los Angeles means The Angels when we’re a private investigator giving a gritty monologue at the beginning of a film noir.

So for a town to have an “unusual” name, it’s likely not to be a case of a town that just got named and we haven’t had time to get used to it.  No, these town names are hilarious, and absolutely not the name of a place you’d be proud to live.  Let’s take a look at America’s funniest town names.

The Funniest Names of American Towns

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The Best Potato Chip Flavors You’ve Probably Never Tasted

“No, dammit, I said weird things we’d WANT to eat.  Yes, we’re going positive this time round.  No, I’m not drunker than normal.  Just get it done.”

~AFFotD Editor-in-Chief Johnny Roosevelt

sour cream and onion

When we talk about food here, outside of the general “fried?  Gimmegimmegimme” context, we have a tendency to focus on strange flavors or, God forbid, Japan.  That also applies to our discussion of potato chip flavors—generally, when we take the time to describe potato chips to you, the reader, we talk about flavors that other countries like to use, and why those countries are wrong and bad.  We mention potato chips that you haven’t heard of because you live a good life and avoid bad things, and most other countries like to hawk terrible potato chip flavors, and they can go to hell and take their ketchup flavored potato shavings with them, those sons of a bitches.

But we’ve decided that today, just this once, we should try to be positive with our guidance.  So we’re not going to talk about awful potato chip flavors you didn’t know existed.  Instead, we will discuss underrepresented potato chip flavors out there, and let you know what you’re missing.

No, we’re not being sarcastic, why do you keep assuming we’re being sarcastic when we try to say nice things?

The Best Potato Chip Flavors You’ve Probably Never Tasted

 cajun squirrel

This is not on the list.

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AFFotD’s Strangest Search Engine Hits

“Ha, sorry guys, no titties here.”

~AffotD Editor-in-Chief, Johnny Roosevelt

google

Running a website dedicated to Americanness in all of its makingupnessofwordsness forms is a lot like being God.  You wield total power (not only can we delete your comments if we don’t like them, we can edit the text of your comment to make you seem stupid), you are totally in charge of what people can see, and most people don’t have a clue if you exist or not.  Do we let this power go to our head?  Oh, absolutely.

But there’s another aspect to maintaining AFFotD that you might not immediately assume—when you find our website through a google search, it lets us know what you searched for that led you to read our website.  A lot of the times, it’s not anything that’s particularly surprising.  For example, our most searched item is “Popcorn Sutton” because we wrote an article about Popcorn Sutton that had some, well, less than ideal writing decisions, but people finding our site searching that name, that just makes sense.  Additionally, we’ve had over 2,000 people find our page searching for “ugly cow” because we once wrote an article that had a picture of an ugly cow.  Google is not nearly as sophisticated as all their algorithm talk would have you believe.

cow_800

“Ha, that cow is CRAZY!”

~Google Executives

Naturally, people will use odd and occasionally sketchy search terms that somehow leads to them stumbling onto our site.  These search engine hits generally range from “very strange” to “ha ha ha ha oh man y’all search for boobs a lot, you’re going to be really pissed off when you click that link and end up staring at a grizzly bear toting a shotgun.”  Today, we’re going to focus on some of the weirder terms we’ve run into.

AFFotD’s Strangest Search Engine Hits

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Filed under America Fun Fact of the Day, Strange America

Wherein AFFotD Screams “Are You Fucking Kidding Me, They’re BUGS” With Righteous Frustration Towards the Fiends at the Mother Nature Network

“The Vegans are coming, the vegans are coming!”

~AFFotD Office Sentries

bugs

Hi.  This might seem like an extreme non-sequitur, but vegans kind of hate us, largely because we loathe vegans.  We say “meat is the best part of living, ergo, vegans are zombies, and we must destroy their brains” and they flock to our site to say “You are a total ignoramus!  Feel sorry for you!  Enjoy your rectal cancer ugly people” because that’s an actual comment left on this website by someone who was mad at us making fun of vegan diets and apparently 95% of America’s vegan population doesn’t have a sense of humor.  The other 5% are no longer vegan because they just succumbed to their base urges, and started eating someone’s brains (because they’re fucking zombies) (but brains aren’t vegan) (so they’re not vegan anymore) (just zombies).

This will all make sense in a little bit, but first, let’s talk about eating bugs.

A surprising amount of cultures include insects as part of their basic diets.  This is called Entomophagy, which is Latin for “eww gross, ha ha, it’s all crawly, hee hee.”  It’s common in developing nations, but lately, taboos about eating bugs are being challenged in first world countries like America by nutritionists pointing out that insects are high in protein, efficient to produce for consumption, and aren’t that gross just grow the fuck up, you haven’t even tried it, okay, just take one bite and if you don’t like it we’ll let you have some chicken.

Our stance on the issue might be surprising to those of you expecting us to demand that the world eat a diet of only bacon and steak (which, admittedly, not a bad call) but we’re totally for people eating bugs.  Some of our writers have actually done so (not in the “eating worms on the playground to make friends because they were lonely children” way…well, not exclusively that way) and they said they were delicious.  People think of eating bugs as digging into worming live messes, which is gross, but it’s also gross trying to bite into a chicken’s thigh as it runs for its life.  Cooked and prepared insects can be surprisingly good—crickets taste like shrimp, most larvae are kind of mushroomy, crickets are deep fried so they taste like everything that’s deep fried (delicious), and some other insects even taste like bacon.  All of these are good things!  We guess some people like the “sustainability” of the food source, but we don’t care—we’ll always welcome an added excuse to try to eat something that once lived on this Earth and has been killed specifically to address the fact that we’ve been drinking since 4PM and man, we should probably get some food in there before going out to the bars.

So to bring our two points together.

Our friends at the Mother Nature Network (sarcasm) posted an article a few months back by their blogger, “Starre Vartan,” entitled, “Eating insects is better than eating meat, but is it any more ethical?”  So we’re going to spend quite some time bashing our head into a wall for a while, and writing down whatever curse words come to mind in the process.  Enjoy.

Wherein AFFotD Screams “Are You Fucking Kidding Me, They’re BUGS” With Righteous Frustration Towards the Fiends at the Mother Nature Network

         screaming man               

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Swerve: Coca-Cola’s Almost Alcoholic Milk Product For School Lunches

Make it alcoholic!  No wait, make it milk for school lunches!  Fuck it, we’re drunk, do whatever.”

~Coca-Cola Executives

coca cola

We recently waxed the-opposite-of-poetic about Coca-Cola produced beverages that we found, to put it politely, shitty as shit.  In doing our research for that article, we stumbled across a single product, available from 2003 to 2005, that we felt belonged on our list, until a quick look at its history let us know that, no, this drink is wonderful, and the most American thing we can think of, and we wish we had it today.

That drink is Swerve.

Swerve is a milk drink, but it’s so much more.  It’s a microcosm of the product development process of modern day American consumerism.  It’s an opportunistic combination of bad ideas and impractical dreams.  It’s beautiful and it’s ugly and it’s everything about America, all mixed together into a sweetened milk drink.

Let’s talk about Swerve.

Swerve:  Coca-Cola’s Almost Alcoholic Milk Product For School Lunches

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