01 June 2009

University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

1 Sep 2007. Big ol' tumbler from Kenan Stadium.

The state of North Carolina got its nickname when Queen Caroline, visiting the American continent, stepped in a pile of oxen manure. Since the epithet "ox s*** heeled" did not roll off the tongue and was also quite vulgar, the euphemism "tar heeled" was how Caroline described her dreadful visit. The colonists decided to take back the insult and proudly use it as their own. The Queen, offended (she was perpetually offended), would have nothing more to do with the place and ordered a new colonial charter that named the Carolinas after King Charles instead: Charleyshire. Charles asked with a roll of his regal eyes, "What in the name of consumptive dysentery does an illiterate farming village matter to you? It might be named Cackalacky for all I care!" A royal passenger pigeon carried the news to the New World. The colonists happily adopted this new nonsense phrase into their vocabularium. This triple dose of shock proved too much for poor Caroline. She died in 1737. National mourning failed to commence. Today, the Tar Heel State has adopted offensive habits (e.g., baby blue) as a continuation of this nose-thumbing to authority.

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