“Benedict Arnold – now there was a true patriot.”

by awindram

 [tweetmeme source=”awindram” only_single=false] I thought this year I’d try to really embrace July 4th rather than doing my usual act of skulking off back home while everyone else enjoys the whizzes and the bangs of a fireworks display. With that in mind I set off to buy some suitably American attire for July 4th.

 As far as I can gather for many that seems to be the main purpose of Independence Day (and the week leading up to it) – a chance to wear that stars and stripes leather jacket you bought back in 1979. So needing something to wear I headed to Target, a fine American corporation. Finding the Target employee that looked the most patriotic – the telltale signs are a sensible haircut, good posture, and a strong jaw line – I asked where I might find the most patriotic T-shirts. Leading me to a selection of T-shirts featuring the stars and stripes, it was difficult for me to contain my disappointment with this somewhat anemic selection.

“Hmmm, do you have anything more patriotic?” I asked.

The patriotic youth seemed a little confused.

“I was,” I said, “looking for something with a little more pizzazz. Something more OTT. I was kinda hoping you’d have one where Jesus is cradling the liberty bell while a bald eagle looks down approvingly?”

The youth looked confused. I’d been wrong about him. His jaw line was not as strong as I’d thought, his posture was a little crooked and his hair style was looking increasingly un-American. “Why would we have that?” he sneered.

“Because you love this country – that’s why!  Okay, have you got anything with a bald eagle in full flight in front of  the stars and stripes, but, and this is the important bit, with a kick-ass explosion going on behind the flag? No? Nothing?”

I wandered off disappointed. This must have been how Benedict Arnold felt. You try and give this American lark a try, but you just end up getting kicked in the teeth. And that was when I saw this little number which I’ll be wearing today.   

Now normally I would disapprove of anything that says England and yet features the Union Flag rather than the St George’s Flag, but I’m going to allow it in this instance as Britain and England were used interchangeably during the time of the American Revolution (though, of course, this version of the Union Flag wouldn’t have been in use until 1801).

I’ll leave you with an amusing, if somewhat unrepresentative, example of American patriotism. Hey, I’m still, at heart, a snide, godless, socialist-loving European.

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