Ridiculously and unnecessarily large flags

I was driving to the mall the other day (more on this in a later post, malls being a quintessentially American institution) and as I was working my way along the main boulevard I spotted something waving in the distance. It was a GARGANTUAN American beast of a flag, hoisted up on a big fat two-story pole and flopping lackadaisically in the wind (some pretty gusty conditions must be required before the weight of all that fabric to be fully unfurled).  I wondered what was going on there… A special occasion? Some sort of government office?  But when I drove closer, I realized it was… a car dealership.

On the way home from the mall, I spotted the colossal flag again.  I was momentarily confused, because I was pretty sure I was driving home a different way than I came, although I’m only just getting to know the area.  Then I realized I WAS on a different road, this was just another gratuitously large flag adorning another random business.  I’m not sure if it is intended as a way to draw the attention of prospective customers to the establishment, a demonstration of the patriotism of the owners, or both.  In any case, those are some damn big flags.

This led me to wonder, what and where is the largest flag in America?  Which, of course, led me down a Google rabbit hole and irrevocably lost me 15 minutes of my life.  Because there seem to be as many flags that claim to be the “world’s largest American flag” as there are British towns that claim to have “the most pubs of any town in the UK.”

SUPERFLAG: the World's Largest Flag, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.

SUPERFLAG: the World’s Largest Flag, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.

As far as I can ascertain (not wishing to waste further valuable moments of my life), the American flag which appears to have the most legitimate claim to the title of “biggest” is the so-called SUPERFLAG, which measures 255 feet by 505 feet and requires 600 volunteers to carry.  And, this being America, you can visit www.superflag.com and pay to rent the flag.  I think I might get it for my back yard…

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January 30, 2014 · 7:43 am

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