McPherson County is once again on the national scene as the butt of a joke.
Last time it was because of my hometown, Canton, Kan., which is in McPherson County, and Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert who took shots at the town for being small and quaint. This was part of a bit where he made fun of various towns throughout the country that were named Canton, starting with Canton, Ga., and then attacking the rest as a way of apologizing to the previously insulted Canton by explaining he “meant” the following Canton.
He had this zinger of an insult:
“I would say we should convert it to a landfill, but that is insulting landfills,” Colbert said of Canton, Kan., during the nearly minute-long piece. “If Dorothy were from Canton, Kansas, she would have wished that the house dropped on her.”
Besides calling the town a s**t hole, he also said this:
“How many Canton, Kansas, residents does it take to screw in a light bulb? None! They don’t use lights because they don’t want to see where they live,” Colbert said.
Now, though, the attention has been turned away from Canton and focused on the county seat, McPherson.
Notorious shock-jock Howard Stern, who left domestic radio Jan. 9, 2006, for the uncensored Sirius XM satellite radio, prank-called a local radio station a couple weeks ago, and it was hilarious.
McPherson has a radio station. It is called Mid Kansas Radio 96.7 FM and 1540 AM.
The station has been around for years and years, and it has an extensive coverage area that reaches far beyond McPherson County, not to mention its online broadcast offerings.
One of its feature programs is a call-in show called Swap Shop where people can call in during the live broadcast and tell the masses they are selling an item or wanting to purchase an item. Other listeners can then call in and the seller and buyer are united.
Of course, people can also call in to give stuff away or tell people they want to trade something for another item.
It is an interesting show that is very small-town, which I think is great.
Others think it is funny, such as Howard Stern and his cohorts, Sal and Richard.
They called in and had fun with the fact some local woman was trying to give away a New Hampshire Red Rooster.
First they called in a couple times and were asking about the size, color and age of the cock.
The host, Kelsey Walker, hung up on them often.
Then one of them called in saying he had a donkey he wanted to get rid of and said he’d trade his ass for the lady’s cock.
At this point, Station General Manager Joe Johnston called in and got on the line and talked to the show’s host and audience.
“You’re putting up with a bunch of stuff that you don’t need to put up with on Swap Shop,” he said. “In the introduction we talk about using good old common sense. Now’s the time to exhibit that. We’ve had some calls this morning that have just crossed the line and we don’t appreciate it. And that’s all I wanted to say.”
Kelsey agreed and shared her two cents as well.
“And that needs to stop,” she said.
Ouch. She was very callous with that comment, don’t you think?
Stern and his crew laughed heartily about the whole ordeal, especially making fun of the fact that they got lectured.
Having your hometown or the area you grew up in be the butt of a joke might offend some people, but it doesn’t bother me.
I think it is great because at least people know those parts of the world exist.
Everyone just needs to grow thicker skin.
Besides, in both cases, the jokes were funny and clever.
Colbert took the little nuances of Canton, Kan., and turned them into hilarious jokes. Of the same token, Stern’s boys took an actual caller’s comments and turned it around on the entire show.
Comedy isn’t easy to pull off. It takes skills to do it right.
And as for the negative attention some might view the two comedic attacks as, I say that is nonsense.
There is no such thing as bad publicity.