From Sea to Shining Sea

Click to enlarge

Each year on this date I try to find and present a photo or illustration that captures America in a nutshell (here are the ones from 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, and 2008). When I came across the photo of this gent cooking meat on a gun-shaped grill, I knew I’d found this year’s entry.

(Gun-shaped grills and smokers, it turns out, are a thing — look here and here.)

Anyway: The comments are open, so feel free to chat amongst yourselves. Everyone have a great holiday. And if you happen to be in the company of a Britisher today, kindly pass along my annual Independence Day rallying cry: In your face, Redcoats!

34 comments to From Sea to Shining Sea

  • StLMarty | July 4, 2014 at 8:06 am |

    As I’ve stated in previous years,this one never disappoints on Independence Day.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FMDma8Hkmo

  • stan gable | July 4, 2014 at 8:06 am |

    Happy 4th. Paul, I once spent the 4th in Manesquan and there were two British lads with our group. At the finale of the fireworks show we were watching, I jumped up and down in front of them yelling “we won!!!” Yay America! They were annoyed.

    • George Chilvers | July 4, 2014 at 8:54 am |

      Annoyed? I doubt it.

      They probably “tutted” loudly and “gave a look”.

  • Gene sanny | July 4, 2014 at 8:27 am |

    Most media outlets have decided to stop using the term “Redcoats”… they’re now going with “English Army”. :)

  • George Chilvers | July 4, 2014 at 8:53 am |

    I think you’ll find you still owe us some taxes on a shipment of tea that you claim was water damaged. I have been instructed to advise you that the interest is continuing to accrue.

    Have a good day, guys and gals :)

    • Ray Barrington | July 4, 2014 at 9:44 am |

      Dear Mr. Chivers: If you will kindly remember, that was repaid in kind with many large pieces of armament between 1941-1945. Have a nice 4th.

      • George Chilvers | July 4, 2014 at 9:56 am |

        Thank you for your kind regards.

        However your order was delayed. We had required it in 1939 :)

        (I am only joking by the way – if anyone doesn’t have my sense of humour (with a “u”))

        • BvK1126 | July 4, 2014 at 3:40 pm |

          I’m pretty sure most of us around here do share your sense of humor (and humour), George. By the way, I passed the hat and took up a collection among my friends. Will $1.92 cover it? (I’m terrible with exchange rates.)

        • George Chilvers | July 4, 2014 at 4:00 pm |

          At 1773 rates it certainly will.

          Not sure how I’ll get the change to you, though.

  • Mild bill | July 4, 2014 at 9:00 am |

    I’ve never seen boots with stripes and laces.

  • Coleman | July 4, 2014 at 9:56 am |

    Have a safe and Happy 4th, everyone. Remember when grilling your favorite meat, charcoal or GTFO!

    • Chuck | July 5, 2014 at 12:26 am |

      I always use charcoal. I do not want to have a gas grill BOMB in my backyard! :-)

  • Cort | July 4, 2014 at 10:18 am |

    Who barbecues in the middle of a barren plot? This photo smack of Dommsday, of The End Times, that gargantuan mismatched maniac the last survivor of some band of Preppers. He’s armed to the teeth, and will stop at nothing to protect his supplies?

    That meat he’s grilling? That’s the last guy what tried to cross him.

    • DenverGregg | July 4, 2014 at 12:21 pm |

      “Who barbecues in the middle of a barren plot?”

      Someone who has caught a previous location on fire?

  • Ryan daBearfan | July 4, 2014 at 10:44 am |

    Happy 4th! The Chicago Bears have the best uniforms(and it’s uniform history) in American pro sports.

  • Cort | July 4, 2014 at 10:47 am |

    The way I figure it, George, somehow y’all ended up with Madonna: not provocative, barrier-defying Madonna, but creepy, sexy Grandma Madonna.

    Whatever book balancing happened during WWII has been utterly wiped out. We are forever in your debt.

    • George Chilvers | July 4, 2014 at 11:08 am |

      A good point well made.

    • BvK1126 | July 4, 2014 at 3:21 pm |

      “Whatever book balancing happened during WWII has been utterly wiped out. We are forever in your debt.”

      Amen to that! I’m so glad a few little misunderstandings in the late 18th and early 19th Centuries couldn’t stand in the way of a beautiful friendship between our countries.

  • Andrew | July 4, 2014 at 11:08 am |

    If you can read, thank a teacher. If you can read English, thank a veteran.

    • BvK1126 | July 4, 2014 at 3:31 pm |

      And if your ancestors spoke another language besides English, thank God that we live in a country that has long welcomed the world into her arms with the following words:

      “Give me your tired, your poor,
      Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
      The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
      Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
      I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

      • Jim Y. | July 5, 2014 at 12:37 am |

        What if they spoke Navajo?

  • KC | July 4, 2014 at 12:46 pm |

    Combining Independence Day and flag-desecration themes, here’s Marcia Van Dresser, feeling operatically patriotic:

    http://www.shorpy.com/files/images/SHORPY-25489u.preview.jpg

  • BvK1126 | July 4, 2014 at 3:17 pm |

    Speaking of flag desecration, God bless (and help) ‘Murica!

    In all seriousness, Happy Independence Day to everyone, and Happy Birthday, America! I’m proud to call it my home, and I still think it’s the greatest country in the world. Here are 100 reasons why (with thanks to CNN Money).

    • hmich176 | July 4, 2014 at 7:56 pm |

      I recognize the joke here…but I must say I cannot stand when people say/write ‘Murica or Merica (this type of joke aside).

      It’s America. It’s one character. Is such a foolish nickname really necessary. At all. Ever?

  • Belgium Endive | July 4, 2014 at 7:04 pm |

    Hmmm, maybe a slightly uni newsworthy event.

    It has been always the source of some frustration to me, MLB imposing US holidays on the Toronto Blue Jays, especially when the Blue Jays are playing at home. The most recent incident came on Memorial Day, the Blue Jays wore those dreadful military fatigue uni’s (a simple poppy logo on a sleeve – would have been a reasonable compromise).

    Well today, the Blue Jays are wearing their Canadian hats, while playing in Oakland (not sure they’ve done that in the past – maybe they have). I’m not 100% comfortable with that either, maybe something that reflects friendship and respect would be more appropriate, something like this

    https://www.google.ca/search?q=canadian+us+flags+together&tbm=isch&imgil=pdjMOEHH1yH-BM%253A%253Bhttps%253A%252F%252Fencrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com%252Fimages%253Fq%253Dtbn%253AANd9GcQnSY-XSulm7u73arn_WiCZN8ZdvDE3M0X4gA2WilAtSobeGUHakQ%253B380%253B252%253BsZi6lA5vNNEwsM%253Bhttp%25253A%25252F%25252Fweb.international.ucla.edu%25252Finstitute%25252Fevent%25252F9532&source=iu&usg=__RfcenapiaMaBz5KdeRDYe4m6Z_M%3D&sa=X&ei=vjG3U4XcNIrD8AGPj4D4BA&ved=0CCIQ9QEwAg&biw=1366&bih=597#facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=pdjMOEHH1yH-BM%253A%3BsZi6lA5vNNEwsM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Finternational.ucla.edu%252Fmedia%252Fimages%252Fus-canda-flags-together-un-mco.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fweb.international.ucla.edu%252Finstitute%252Fevent%252F9532%3B380%3B252

  • jim nedelka | July 4, 2014 at 7:13 pm |

    I just got a glimpse on SNY of the Mets’ “FC” white-on-black memorial patch for their former GM Frank Cashen.
    …wonder if any thought was given to making the patch in the shape of a bowtie?

    • Brendan Burke | July 4, 2014 at 7:22 pm |

      I sure hope so. Bow ties are cool!

  • KSaw | July 4, 2014 at 7:36 pm |

    Are the hats today made out of regular material? They appear on TV to be the regular on field material. On the MLB shop they are clearly the batting practice material. They also have a grey underbill which is strange.

  • Will Morris | July 4, 2014 at 8:41 pm |

    I wonder what would happen if one of the baseball teams decided no, we’re not wearing the 4th of July hats – we’ll be happy to pay the fine instead, thanks.

    • James Burke | July 4, 2014 at 9:42 pm |

      They would instantly become Paul’s favorite team. Unless they’re the Yankees, of course.