Once we reached the main north-south street of the west side of town, we saw that it, too, was lined with flags. I don't know how far to the south they ran, but the business district in that direction continues for more than a mile. To the north, the flags continued for about that far, up to where the road narrows to two lanes. Again, the staffs were stuck into holes that had been drilled into the sidewalk just inside the curb. There was a stiff breeze blowing, and because there is no on-street parking, and the sidewalks are only about a flag's length wide, the flags on one side of the street were blowing out into passing traffic while those on the other side were blowing across the sidewalk at about face height. The few pedestrians on that side of the street were either walking in the adjoining parking lots or strips of landscaping or bare dirt, or, where that route was blocked, were walking in the street and dodging passing traffic in order to avoid being slapped in the face with Old Glory. It was highly symbolic, though not, I think, in the way the flag planters intended.
I have no idea who those flag planters are. Since the only place I saw on this side of town that sported the flag display was that one church, I think it might have something to do with them, but I can't be sure. Once again, something is going on in town that I know nothing about. I really ought to start reading that (incredibly crappy) local newspaper. Anyway, I estimate that there must be more than two thousand flags on display along the streets. Maybe somebody is trying to get the town into the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest flag display. It looks as though the staffs might easily be plucked from the little curbside orifices into which they have been inserted, so this is a golden opportunity for patriotic thieves. A couple of guys in a truck could probably collect the whole lot of them in less than an hour. I wonder how much a couple thousand flags on metal staffs would cost? I hope the town didn't spend the pothole-filling money on them.
I'm also wondering how long they intend to leave them up. It's still a long way until the Fourth of July, which is when one might expect to see such a display. In the meantime, I can imagine any number of the local senile delinquents, distracted by the roadside billows of red white and blue, being sufficiently distracted to drive their oversized motor homes off the road, mowing down a few dozen of the staffs and coming to rest against some pine trees, or inside Burger King, draped in impromptu shreds of bunting. Ah, the joys of small town life.