1. For those unaware, the city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin is currently undergoing a contest to redesign their city flag.
  2. The current flag has been in place since the 1950s, when city leaders realized Milwaukee was one of only 4 US cities with populations over 500,000 without an official flag.
  3. Rather than choose a winning design, the alderman in charge of the contest combined elements from numerous design proposals into the following glorious monstrosity:
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    Oof.
  5. For comparison's sake, here is the simple, elegant and emblematic Chicago city flag.
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    Easy on the eyes, super recognizable, something any kid could easily recreate with colored pencils
  6. And again, here is the 5-hued gallimaufry of ugliness that waves 100 miles north.
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  7. In 2004, the North American Vexillological Association released a ranking of the flags of 150 US cities. Milwaukee came in 147th.
  8. One of the flags that beat it was Provo, Utah. Let's just take a minute to laugh at the Provo flag.
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    They changed it in 2007, but seriously, that was their city flag.
  9. Anyway, back to Milwaukee...
  10. Oftentimes, cities like to include a small symbolic reference to something distinctive about their local industry on their flag.
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    Milwaukee, however, was all: "yo, let's have a big-ass gear cuz of factories, a boat cuz we're a port city AND some huge barley cuz beer!" Milwaukee isn't big on subtlety.
  11. They also included a drawing of the city scape in case flag wavers wanted to know what Milwaukee looked like I guess.
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  12. And in case you still couldn't figure it out, they made sure to label the flag with a giant, garish "MILWAUKEE" at the bottom.
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  13. Moving to the middle symbols, it's worth noting that the Milwaukee flag has THREE OTHER FLAGS on it.
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    American flag, "m" flag on the boat, and what may have been a civil war era flag that no one is really that sure about. But yeah, Milwaukee's got flags on flags.
  14. They also include the logo for the Milwaukee Braves, which, fine - whatever. But maybe they should have thought about taking it off when in the Braves moved to Atlanta in in 1966 or when Milwaukee's baseball team became the Brewers in 1970.
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  15. Apparently the weird symbol of the dude in the flying triangle with the genie lamp has to do with the Milwaukee Public Library, but I'm just gonna go with 'blue-collar Aladdin riding in a spaceship.'
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  16. Then we have seagulls. Because seagulls.
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  17. And a giant year...
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  18. And finally someone looked at all that and said, "you know what this needs? Multi-tone squiggly lines to indicate water."
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    Because apparently the boat on blue didn't make it clear enough that it was water.
  19. Anyways, this flag might be changing soon (although several previous attempts to change it have sputtered).
  20. So enjoy it while you can.
  21. Never change, Milwaukee. Never change.
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