You try to live your life on the straight and narrow, abiding by the laws and not straying too far from center. But what happens if you leave your Christmas decorations up too long or eat the wrong combination of foods and suddenly find yourself on the wrong side of the law? This country is full of bizarre examples of laws that probably got put on the books with the best of intentions—but are still sitting there. Here is a top ten list of some of the strangest.
10. Who is Supposed to Navigate?
If you are at one with the wild and live in Missouri you may be out of luck when on a road trip. In this state it is illegal to drive around with a bear that is not properly contained with a cage. So, no uncaged bears calling shotgun. If they are caged, however, you should be in the clear. Just make sure you pick a vehicle that has enough clearance or you may have an angry caged bear on your hands, and that makes for some seriously unpleasant stops at the rest areas.
9. The Griswolds Have No Hope
If you are fond of a particularly “old fashioned family” type of Christmas decorating you may not want to make Maine your next home. In Maine it is illegal to have Christmas decorations up past January 14, which means that if you have strung your home with 250 individual strands of lights, you are going to have to start un-stringing before Santa has made his way back up your chimney in order to get everything back into its previous non-cheerful state in time for the deadline. The question is, how early are Christmas lights allowed to go up without being considered up past January 14th?
8. No More 1PRTYBY
New Jersey adds a whole new level of harsh to punishment for those convicted of a DUI. In this state if you are convicted of drunk driving you are never allowed to have personalized plates on your vehicle again. This is going to be especially sad when the owner of that obscure existential literature reference plate dies and you have your chance to grab it—or you park in a big cluster of similar cars and can’t remember your new boring plates.
7. What’s Next? No More Peanut Butter Jelly Time?
You may want to consider a life of crime if you are visiting North Dakota and want to sit back and enjoy a football game with your favorite brew and a crunchy snack. Put down the cold one and resist the snack bowl, because in North Dakota you could get arrested for being served beer and pretzels at the same time. You are either going to need to embrace being a hop-run outlaw or find a new way to enhance those seasonal brews. If prosciutto-wrapped melon or sea salt pita chips just aren’t your thing you may just need to steer clear of this great prairie state all together.
6. Most Fun Quality Control Room Ever
How would you characterize a pickle? You may think that it needs to have spent a certain length of time in brine or should meet specific flavor profile requirements. This sound logical, but what fun is logical when it comes to food quality control? If you want to add a bit of zip to your edibles industry, why not make into law exciting ways to classify food groups? The lawmakers in Connecticut did just that. In Connecticut a pickle is not officially a pickle unless it bounces.