Monday, July 25, 2016

The Butt of travel jokes

“Who would name a town Butt?”

“It is an odd name…”

And so, while travelling across Montana on I-90, we passed through this picturesque and surprisingly large town named after either a roast, the remainder of a smoked cigarette or at worst a derriere. Naturally, I was enthralled.

Perhaps the nexus for being the Butt of Montana, is that the area is home to the largest Superfund site in America (for those who don’t know – this directs government funding to help clean up toxic disaster areas).  This is due to the toxic wastes and heavy metals from copper mining.  Evidence of large scale mining is visible as you travel through town. There is even a relatively famous sludge pit with acid from a mining accident.

A second thought was that this unfortunate address was due to racial tensions (there is even a museum dedicated to the mistreatment of Chinese laborers) or even the organized labor unrest (check out the movie Butt, America).
I know that I was surprised to learn that the World Museum of Mining is in Butt – and that no town can be un-redeeming with a joint like the Silver Bow Brewery Malt House (a good place to tell Butt jokes, I’d bet).

We also noticed a massive white statue (which from a distance we were sure was a Storm Trooper from Star Wars).  Turns out, it is actually (no joke) Our Lady of the Rockies – the third largest statue in the United States.  People leave messages inside the Mother Mary replica – in hopes of miracles for their unfortunate loved ones.

Finally, there is a mountain with a large ‘M’ on it.  I guess that isn’t crazy Bozeman also has a mountain with a large M – and so does Golden, Colorado….).

Excuse me a sec – my wife is hollering something at me…

Yes, dear?

You don’t say.  How embarrassing…

Well, I guess the town in named Butte after all.  

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