From the archives: Buddy Moorehouse wrote this column in 2008, and he’s still standing by these selections now.
You’re all familiar, of course, with the Seven Wonder of the Ancient World. The list includes the Great Pyramids of Giza, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, the Statue of Zeus at Olympia, the Temple of Artemis it Ephesus, the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, the Colossus of Rhodes and the Lighthouse of Alexandria.
Well, figuring that we needed some new Wonders to enjoy, a contest was held by the New Open World Corp. to name the New Seven Wonders of the World. Voting took place over several years, and the results were announced last July.
The New Seven Wonders are the Great Wall of China, Petra in Jordan, the Christ the Redeemer Statue in Brazil, Machu Picchu in Peru, Chichen Itza in Mexico, the Colosseum in Rome and the Taj Mahal in India. The Great Pyramid at Giza (the only one of the original Seven Wonders still standing) also made the list as an honorary member.
In any case, all this Wonder-naming got me to thinking: What would the Seven Wonders of Livingston County be? True, we don’t have any pyramids or great walls here, but we do have plenty of other wonderful Wonders. So it’s time we have a list of our own. And here it is.
Ladies and gentlemen, after careful consideration, the committee (which consists of me) has selected these Seven Wonders of Livingston County:
1. The Great Roundabouts of Green Oak
You’ve heard about them, you’ve read about them, perhaps you’ve even driven past them, but until you’ve driven THROUGH the Great Roundabouts of Green Oak, you’ve never really experienced them. The double roundabout at Lee Road and U.S. 23 is the big attraction here, and even though they’ve been in the .county for a couple of years now, the novelty still hasn’t worn off. People are still ending up on southbound U.S. 23 when they’re trying to get to Costco.
2. Mt. Brighton
It’s a geological marvel that has stumped the experts for decades. All around Mt. Brighton, the land is gently rolling and flat. So how did this enormous hill this mountain spring up in southeastern Livingston County? There are some who say it’s nothing but a bunch of old tires and garbage with some dirt thrown on top, but nothing has ever been proven. How did Mt. Brighton get there? What caused this massive mound to appear? Why was “Aspen Extreme,” which was filmed there, such a bad movie? As historical riddles go, this one is right up there with Stonehenge. (EDIT: We solved this mystery last year.)
3. The Tridge
If it were just a bridge, it would be no big deal. But it’s not a bridge; it’s a Tridge. This three-legged marvel straddles the Mill Pond in downtown Brighton. Most of you are probably too young to remember this, but in the days before the Tridge, if you were over at the playground and you wanted to get to Dairy Queen, you had to walk all the way AROUND the pond, then down the street to Grand River Avenue. It was hell. Now. thanks to the Tridge, it’s a snap to get from the Imagination Station to DQ. Praise be.
What other county in America has its very own four-letter word? Having Hell as part of Livingston County has been a blessing for so many reasons. For those who like to swear, it’s allowed them to do all the cursing they want, without fear of being chastised. “Honey, if your mother is coming to visit us for a month, why don’t the two of you just go to Hell?” See? No problem.
5. The Bloated Goat
As bars go, this little place in downtown Fowlervllle is nothing out of the ordinary. It’s a great place to grab a beer and burger, but that’s about it. But what makes the Bloated Goat Saloon special is the name. It’s not a good name for a bar, it’s a great name for a bar, and people come from far and wide just to say they’ve been to the Goat.
6. The Many McDonald’s of Howell
If you were to stand atop the historical Livingston County Courthouse in downtown Howell, you could gaze in almost any direction and see Golden Arches. Look to the east, and you’d see the McDonald’s in front of the Meijer store. Look to the west, and you’d see the one just past the high school. Look a little farther to the west, and you’d see some arches popping up near the outlet mall. Indeed, that’s why Howell’s official motto is “Si quaerim archum goldum, circumspice” (“If you seek a pleasant McDonald’s, look about you”).
7. The Ugly Naked Guy
The official name is “Decision Pending,” but to the throngs of tourists who come each summer to the Brighton Mill Pond to see the statue, it’s the Ugly Naked Guy. Sure, there are other statues we could have chosen to stand guard in the middle of the city, but none of them can hold a candle to the UNG. He’s ugly, he’s naked, he’s a guy. And, yes, he’s all ours.