Sunday, April 12, 2009


or, I Offer Practical Suggestions for Sustainability

Some scientists in Aberdeen
Are trying to make sex more green.
They've hooked fornicators
Up to generators.
It's dirty; the energy's clean.

Aberdeen, WA (pop. 16,461 in 2000) sits on the western edge of the Olympic Peninsula between the Chehalis and Wishkah rivers (Wikipedia). Founded in 1884, it was named after the local Aberdeen Packing Co., which was in turn named after Aberdeen, Scotland, then famous for its fisheries (Phillips). The owner of Aberdeen Packing Co., B.A. Seaborg, also argued for the name because it meant "the meeting of two rivers" in Gaelic (ibid). In the early 20th century, Aberdeen was a very rough port town, full of abductions, robbery and murder. Perhaps its best known criminal was Billy Gohl, the local agent for the Sailors' Union, who is believed to have dumped over forty bodies in Grays Harbor (Billy Gohl of Grays Harbor).

These days, Aberdeen is known largely as the hometown of legendary Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. Cobain's experience in Aberdeen was largely one of homelessness and vandalism (Walking Tour of Kurt Cobain's Aberdeen) and he described the town as "like Twin Peaks without the excitement" (Seven Ages of Rock). This has not stopped the city from adding "Come As You Are" to the "Welcome to Aberdeen" sign in honor of Nirvana's hit song (Picture!) and forming the Kurt Cobain Memorial Committee, dedicated to honoring Cobain's memory within the limits of Aberdeen through a proposed Kurt Cobain Park and Kurt Cobain Youth Center (Kurt Cobain Memorial Committee).

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