Posts Tagged ‘official plastic bird’

Madison’s official plastic bird

September 2, 2009

Is the Pink Flamingo. Ald. Marsha Rummel, who describes herself as “old enough to remember” the era of the pink flamingo, sponsored an ordinance to make it the official plastic bird of the Mad-town.

Dusty Weis:

Late in the 1970’s, a group of students at the University of Wisconsin staged a virtual coup of the student government. The Pail and Shovel Party got their name from campaign promises that they would convert their budget into spare change that would fill a giant sandbox that students could then dig in with pails and shovels. As far as I know, they never got around to that one, but they did embark on some of the goofiest, most ambitious pranks the UW has ever known, and their exploits have become the stuff of legends.

One of their less ambitious projects, but among their most iconic, was a very visible display of 1,008 plastic pink flamingos on the lawn of Bascom Hill. Pictures of the occasion can be found in bars, on post cards and hanging on the walls of proud alumni. There’s little in the world more garish than a plastic pink flamingo, but to see a thousand of them flocked on the majestic central campus mall… words fail to do it justice…

Perhaps most hilarious of course was Ald. Thuy Pham-Remmele, who is known to bore other members to tears with long speeches about small details of policies, speaking in opposition to the plan, and predictably taking up more time railing against this “waste of time” than, as Weis writes, Rummel used to read the stupid thing.