Is Kalamazoo Really Not That Unique of a City Name?
Every state has weird city names. I'm from Alabama which is notorious for having city names not being pronounced how they look, so I can understand getting accustomed to strange names.
But, honestly, Kalamazoo is a weird name. It is, and no one should be pretending it's not.
I haven't lived in Southwest Michigan long, but I love it here. I enjoy driving around Kalamazoo and learning about our quirky city. This place is a part of me already, so you're darn right I'm going to defend it now.
First of all, we know there are not many Kalamazoos in the country. There are five including ours and adding up the other four's population doesn't even compare to THE Kalamazoo.
I don't know what else it takes to be considered unique, but the Detroit Free Press didn't think Kalamazoo was worth mentioning in its list of 15 unique cities in Michigan back in April 2022.
Our slogan is "Yes, There Really is a Kalamazoo" for crying out loud!
Look, I'll give you Ypsilanti and Christmas - but everyone that knows what a football is has heard of Canton. Canton, Ohio that is, the home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Not very unique guys! That halfway point from Detroit and Chicago just felt a bit more "windy," if you catch my drift.
I described Kalamazoo as weird, and I mean that in the most respectful way. The way it rolls off the tongue is like all of the best parts of Alabama, but without all the gross feelings of the 1950s. Kalamazoo is just fun to say and it stands out. Why else is it periodically referenced as an attention grabber?
If Uncle Fester is leaning on Kalamazoo for a weird reference in "Wednesday," then how the heck does Kalamazoo not make a list of the United States' weirdest names? Oh, I see, Climax and Colon made this list - haha. ಠ_ಠ
They're funny, no doubt, but Climax and Colon are otherwise completely normal, everyday words. We were looking for weird and you failed.
Surely, a word that starts with a K, includes three As and ends in ZOO would be considered at least somewhat funny to say, right? I mean, I laughed the first time I was told about this job. Kalamazoo is a funny word.
This time Kalamazoo gets the shaft from USA Today. Choosing one city from each state, and for Michigan USA Today (the forthright deciders on quality comedy) went with... checks notes... NORTH STAR?!?!
Climax, Colon, Hell, Bad Axe - you had so many options that would at least be respectable over Kalamazoo. Are y'all kidding me?!
Well, maybe they can't see it. But the way I see it, and I'm sure you may too, Kalamazoo is about as unique as it gets, plenty weird on its own and really funny when you stop to think about it.