Best choices may be least exciting

Tuesday, August 3, 2004

Have you checked out the ice cream cooler lately? It will knock your eyes out. From rocky road to macadamia nut brittle, rum raisin and cookie dough, the varieties are endless.

But most of us aren't adventurous enough to try a flavor called "rabbit tracks" or "tiger tiger" -- even on days like today when the temperatures flirt with the century mark.

No most of us are content to take no more of a culinary risk than saying "chocolate, please" to the person behind the counter, wielding the scoop, asks for our order.

According to the International Ice Cream Association, the top flavor is ... drumroll please ... vanilla. Or chocolate.

Those two flavors are, in fact, tied for first place in the IICA's list of the top 15 most popular. The others are 2. Butter pecan, 3. Strawberry, 4. Neapolitan, 5. Chocolate chip, 6. French vanilla, 7. Cookies and cream, 8. Vanilla fudge ripple, 9. Praline pecan, 10. Cherry, 11. Chocolate almond, 12. Coffee, 13. Rocky road and 14. Chocolate marshmallow.

All of which has nothing to do with McCook's new single site elementary school, now under construction at the North Ward site. It has nothing to do about ice cream, but everything about consensus.

In a recent Gazette's online poll, a number suggestions were listed as names for the new school.

The most popular?

"McCook Elementary" received 337 votes, or 45.6 percent of the 739 who indicated a choice. We should note, of course, that there is nothing scientific about the online poll. Anyone can vote as many times as they wish, as long as it's not more than one time a day.

The second most popular was the current name, North Ward Elementary, with 13.4 percent or 99 votes. Others were Frank B. Morrison, 11.8 percent and 87 votes; George W. Norris, 11 percent and 81 votes; E. Benjamin Nelson, 5.8 percent and 43 votes; Heritage Elementary, 4.5 percent and 33 votes; Ralph G. Brooks, 1.9 percent and 14 votes; and Valentine Elementary with 10 votes and 1.4 percent.

Web site visitors were also asked to submit their own suggestion, and 35, or 4.7 percent of them, did so. They offered names like NEWS (after North, East, West and South Wards), Bison Elementary, Gerald R. Ford Elementary, Ronald Reagan Elementary, Willow Elementary, and Carl Smock Elementary.

"McCook Elementary." Not very exciting, but like chocolate or vanilla, it probably has a chance of being palatable for the greatest number of people. We have a feeling, however, that whatever the official name, most of us will continue to refer to the new school as North Ward.

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