||Dogestan, the Official City of the New Millennium
by Mad Dog
Its true I havent shopped around for
a town lately so Im not really sure what the going price is these days, but the way I
figure it I can get a 30-year mortgage and have monthly payments of only
||The next time you hear from
me I may be the mayor of a city. Or possibly king. Actually, since Iíll
own the place I can make myself any damned thing I want. Iím thinking
sane might be a nice change of pace.
The town Iím considering buying is
Otis, Oregon. Itís a nice little 187-acre place on the beautiful Oregon
coast which comes complete with a gas station, Pronto Pup hot dog
stand, two houses, and an empty 25-stall horse barn. You can tell itís a
quaint place because theyíre advertising it using classified ads like:
ďStarter town with great view. Nice fixer-upper. Ideal for first time
town owner or new couple. Good transportation, close to beach, no school.
Hot dog stand included.Ē Face it, if it was a hip place theyíd be
auctioning it off on eBay.
The current owner, Vivian Lematta, is
unloading it because she has too many towns in her portfolio and wants to
diversify. Just kidding. Actually she hasnít lived in Otis since the
1950s and, face it, a town can be a lot to keep up with. Thereís
cleaning, dusting, vacuuming, and updating the ďWelcome to Otis,
population 32Ē sign. Just kidding again. The truth is, no one knows how
many people live in Otis, which just points out how derelict Lemattaís
been in her town-owning duties.
Sheís asking $3 million for it, which
seems pretty reasonable to me, even though her grandfather only paid
$5,000 when he bought it from descendants of the Siletz Indians in 1910.
Thatís a pretty good return on investment. To put it in perspective,
itís almost as much as the average tech start-up stock increases after
the first two hours of going public, and the only hot dogs they have to
offer are the 22-year-olds who run the company.
One of the glories
of owning a town is that you can do whatever you want to do. Itís kind
of like being a dictator without having to worry about the United States
|| Itís true I
havenít shopped around for a town lately so Iím not really sure what
the going price is these days, but the way I figure it I can get a 30-year
mortgage which will mean monthly payments of only $17,507. That
shouldnít be a problem once I install the toll booth on Hwy 101, place a
city tax on empty horse barns, and the rent checks start rolling in from
the casino the descendants of the Siletz Indians will open there.
Of course the nameís going to have to
go ó itís too reminiscent of an elevator, a town drunk in Mayberry, or
a guy who sits on docks of the bay watching the tide roll away. I think a
new town needs a new image, which is why Iím going to name it Dogestan.
I considered Dogtown, thought long and hard about Mad Dog Heights, and
even toyed with calling it Newer York, but in the end I decided that if
Iím going to attract the beautiful people who spend the big bucks I need
a trendy name.
Unfortunately the trendiest ones ó
iMadDog.com, eMadDog, and Google ó were already taken so I had to go to
the next trend. I figured if every country in Eastern Europe now has a
name that ends in ďstanĒ ó like Uzbekistan, Dagestan, and Kazakhstan
ó then my town should too. I donít know how this got started since it
wasnít long ago that Pakistan and Afghanistan were the only countries
with names ending in ďstanĒ, and lord knows theyíve never had a
reputation as trendsetters.
One of the glories of owning a town is
that you can do whatever you want to do. Itís kind of like being a
dictator without having to worry about the United States invading. For
example, a few years ago South Carolina outlawed the sale of urine. Now
Iím not sure how many people actually want to buy urine (ďCan I have a
Big Gulp, the large size tuna jerky, and a quart of urine. Make it
high-test.Ē), except maybe those Olympic athletes who need to pass a
drug test and donít have a single straight and sober friend in the
world. But South Carolina wanted to do it, so they did.
In Dogestan well have an Official Liquor, an Official Shoe, an Official Sex Symbol,
and the Official Columnist, which will of course be me. What good is it having your own
city if you cant be self-serving?
|| In Dogestan
Iíll let people open urine stands all along Highway 101 if they want.
Hell, during the summer they can sell frozen Urine-on-a-Stick for all I
care. True, Iíd much prefer they sold Blendís, which is a liquor-laced
ice cream made in Minneapolis, but itís a free city, you know. Come to
think of it, Iím going to make Blendís the Official Ice Cream of
Dogestan. Yup, weíll even eat it during city council meetings.
This brings up another wonderful thing
about owning a town ó you can name anything you want as the Official
Whatchamacallit of the city. And unlike the Official [fill in the blank] of the Millennium which no one cared about after
January 2, 2000, this is an honor that can last forever. Or at least until
I change my mind.
States and cities all over the country
have official trees, flowers, insects, and songs. How boring. In Dogestan
weíll have an Official Liquor (Jose Cuervo), an Official Shoe (Converse
All-Star high-top black monochrome), an Official Sex Symbol (which will
change weekly depending on who has the best bogus naked web site at the
moment), and the Official Columnist, which will of course be me. What good
is it having your own city if you canít be self-serving?
So start making plans to visit Dogestan
on your next vacation. You might even think about spending the holidays
there. The airís good, the Pronto Pups are hot, and weíll keep the
horse barn light on for you. Tom Bodett, eat your heart out.
©2004 Mad Dog Productions, Inc. All
These columns appear in better newspapers across the country. Read
them while driving to Dogestan on vacation.