When I worked at the Toledo Blade more than 30 years ago, I had to go to Oregon, Ohio — a T-town suburb — once or twice. Frankly, I don’t remember much about the place.
Some people in that town, though, had a good idea after Ohio State’s victory over Alabama set up an Ohio State-Oregon national championship game. They collected signatures of residents who wanted to show support for the Buckeyes by changing the town’s name for the day of the game, and their idea garnered a fair amount of national attention — more national attention, in fact, than Oregon, Ohio has received since, well, ever. At first the Mayor evidently nixed the idea, but then he came around. Unfortunately, the new name that somebody came up with was “Oregon, Ohio: Buckeyes on the Bay, City of Duck Hunters.”
Uh, what? If you wanted to come up with a better example of a city name selected by some kind of mealy-mouthed committee compromise political process, you’d be hard-pressed to top that supremely lame effort. A prudent rule of thumb is that any city name that requires a colon and a comma per se sucks. It’s supposed to be the name of a town, not the name of a law review article.
I applaud the initiative of those Ohio State fans who came up with the idea. As for the politicians who got involved and came up with the new “name”? Never mind.