Raise a thick pair of glasses to Appleton and journalistic standards

Yesterday, I learned to my shock that 66.67% of Appleton residents require reading glasses, though only 33.3% actually wear them in public.

Did you know Appleton was the most far-sighted city in the United States? I can’t help but wonder what’s wrong with a city whose residents are both so blind and so vain. Is it something in the drinking water? The carrots? A stubborn refusal to ingest an appropriate amount of vitamin E?

Desperate for answers, I quickly pulled the curtains to my home closed, dusted off my specs, and read the report.

“Appleton is home to the largest share of blind and vain readers in both Wisconsin and the country,” I read.

“Well, geez,” I thought. “I read it in the paper so it must be so.”

And then I checked the metrics.

It turns out the paper had been quoting a survey conducted by the Institute of Deliberate Idiom Obscurers Transcribed. In an effort to review self-reported incidences of binge squinting, the group conducted a comprehensive survey of all Polish/Croatian residents whose last names begin with B living in the Erb Park area.

The group also noted that the density of lenses on spectacles perched on 2.4 noses for every three faces in Appleton is the ninth highest ratio in America. Still, some, (but not necessarily trusted reporters), would question the lack of compelling methodology and the use of self-reporting in assembling the report.

And, it’s not just Appleton. Eau Claire, Green Bay, Fond du Lac, La Crosse, Madison and Oshkosh all cracked the top 10 list. Come on, Wisconsin! Open your eyes!

The upsetting news filled my Facebook newsfeed yesterday, and prompted a somewhat desperate plea for a response from our local newspaper.

“Are you proud or embarrassed,” the reporter asked. “Let us know in the comments.”


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