No Means Yes in Downers Grove

I share a hometown with well-balanced individuals like Randy Savage and Emo Philips, so it’s no surprise that locals feel the need to voice their frustrations in bizarre ways. The local paper used to have a column called “Sound Off,” where you could call in anonymously and make any sort of comment you liked. Those in town made the most of this opportunity – “Sound Off” had a lot of wild theories, a lot of name calling, a lot of just crazy stuff. The all-time best was a person who called about a man who had gone to one of the local supermarkets and, in their words, “put his reproductive organ in the cole slaw.” This, the caller said, was a man to be admired because he was taking a stand against the status quo, or something. My parents, wanting us to witness democracy in action, let us call all the time.

I don’t know if there’s still a “Sound Off” or not, but Downers Grovers (and what to call DG residents was a hot topic on that page) have not forgotten how to complain, as is evident from the Downers Grove entry in Wikipedia. A few examples:

On Friday nights in the summer, antique and specialty cars park downtown in an informal car show which aggravates commuters and those that wish to park in the downtown area.

Ogden Avenue is one of the busiest automotive retail strips in the country, and second only to 159th street (Orland Park) in the state. Luxury Motors, located on Fairview Ave, is one of the largest online automobile dealers in the world and is renowned for their sleazy, chain smoking, Italian employees.

By the way, the user who wrote the above made only one other contribution to Wikipedia, consisting of the word “ETRUSCANS!”

In 2001, writer Michael Hornburg published a novel entitled Downers Grove, set in the town. Many reviews say this book sucks.

If anyone should edit Wikipedia to include the cole slaw guy, somebody let me know, OK?