While I do not feel like it shapes up in any way to its bigger brothers at the end of the year, July 4th does have one tradition that will always stand the test of time. I am of course talking about fireworks. I really do not know why we light fireworks to celebrate our independence here in America, but who am I to question such things? I like the concept of fireworks and find it fascinating to say the least. They are dangerous little things that probably shouldn't be used by children and around 80% of all adults, sold for dirt cheap from makeshift tents for a couple weeks a year. That is pretty cool. However I do not live in a state that gets exploding fireworks sold by shady characters via oversized tent, I live in Iowa. We get the leftover crap that real states with real fireworks laugh at and call silly names. Today we are going to take a look at some Legal Iowa Fireworks!
Before we begin, I just wanted to say that something odd has seemingly happened over the years. As I mentioned before I really do not pay close attention to the 4th of July anymore. It comes and goes without much of a blimp on my radar. Therefore it came as quite a shock when I went to the store to purchase some fireworks for this article and found only three to choose from. I have heard grumblings for years now that even the crappy fireworks that I grew up with were considered "too dangerous" to be sold in stores but never really imagined that 90% of them would have been taken off from store shelves. So I apologize ahead of time if this article is a little on the short side but this is really all we have to work with folks. No more smoke bombs, no more snaps, heck I couldn't even find morning glory sparklers sold in any store around here. It's unfortunate because I was really looking forward to taking a bunch of photo and video for this article. Instead we sort of just have to make due with what we have. So enjoy the only three things that qualify as fireworks here in Iowa!
Mostly though, it just looks like a cat shit on the sidewalk. This package allows for different colored versions of cat shit for your lighting amusement. Did I mention that Snakes are a horribly un-fun experience to have? Well they are. It has to be some sort of twisted, cruel joke that out of the three items that have managed to survive the legal system here in Iowa that Snakes is one of them. Nobody wants these goofy little things. Not now. Not ever. And I have a package that contains eight boxes, each box has five of the stupid things inside of them. Thus giving me what roughly amounts to a lifetime supply of Snakes. I guess no matter what else goes on in my life, I will always have these Snakes to fall back on. Somehow that doesn't help.
The second item on today's list are Sparklers, a July 4th tradition. Sparklers used to come in many different sizes, colors, and other variations but sadly I could only find one size and one color. Not that there is anything wrong with Gold Sparklers but I always used to prefer the Morning Glory kind. I feel like there is not much that can be said about Sparklers that has not already been said many times before. They are a tired but true firework, one that is suitable for children of any age despite the massive warnings all over the box. I have never been all to clear as to how exactly one is supposed to use a Sparkler, presumably you hold onto them in your hand and run around the lawn. Realistically, you throw them directly at your friends face. Bonus points if you manage to hit an eye or other vital organ.
Naturally anything that I created would be the grand finale of the evening. In my mind I had a reputation to live up to and every year I challenged myself to craft a bigger and better final display. As the years went on and my interested in the holiday peaked around age twelve or thirteen things evolved from simple ground Sparklers to designs that included boards, nails, and imported illegal fireworks from out of state. Those designs reached near fire hazard levels as they typically involved using things not as instructed by the package. This was clearly when The 4th of July as a holiday reached it's summit. For you see there are only so many times you can drag the family into the back yard and have them watch poorly constructed firework displays before it's just not acceptable behavior anymore. Shortly into my teens my interest in the holiday faded to the point that now I no longer really care if its the 4th... 5th... or 6th of July. I mostly just want the hot sticky weather to be over with so I can move onto the better holidays at the end of the year.
But you know what, this is why I love writing this blog so much. For you see if I had not decided to write about Iowa Fireworks I would have had no reason to purchase a package of Sparklers. Without said package of Sparklers I would not have sat down and remembered those fond memories of my childhood, back when the holiday actually felt like it meant something. When sticking Sparklers into the ground was cool and creating grand finale's was all mine. That is why I love doing what I do and I hope it helps to remind everyone else to slow and and enjoy the little things in life again.
That is it. Those are the options that kids get to play with on The 4th of July here in Iowa. Sparklers, Snakes, and Party Poppers. I could go onto some sort of multi-paragraph tirade about how things like this are ultimately the reason why we have an obesity problem here in the United States (giving kids only THREE types of fireworks is pretty much promoting staying inside and playing Call of Duty instead of going outside and running around the back yard) but this is an entertainment blog... not a political blog, so I will save everyone from that fiasco. Instead I will once again wish everyone a Happy 4th of July! Be sure to post your favorite memories, traditions, or vacations down in the comment section and stay safe! (and as a quick reminder if you are in the mood for some GREAT music to listen to over the 4th of July weekend be sure to check out the SUMMER JUKEBOX which is active down at the very bottom of the main page!)