Small town happenings, whether they’re passed through the chain of gossip at the favorite coffee shop or bar, or reported in the local newspaper, have always fascinated me. I grew up in a small town. I spent a number of years raising my kids in a small town. The vibe, intensity and interpersonal goings-on of a small town are unique. Why?
- Everyone knows too much about everyone’s business. Be it the snickers behind highly functioning alcoholic’s back or the whispers of infidelity, privacy goes out the window in a small town.
- The police force is WAY over-equipped for what they have to handle. They’ll lobby for budget to replace every vehicle every year, and arm themselves for the apocalypse, but they are responding to reports of a damaged mailbox or rowdy raccoons. Go manage parking at the county fair and relax.
- Sports sports sports sports sports – Any local newspaper knows its bread is buttered by putting Timmy on the cover hitting his 3rd (out of 10 tries) foul shot. Pages and pages of insufferable local sports.
- Community government often becomes a platform for airing minor grievances, for exposing your neighbor’s administrative shortcomings, and for exhausting the small bit of good out of many otherwise noble volunteers.
- If sports sells…..so does death. Gimme a strong obituary, especially of someone I outlived, and I’m happy.
So all of my ‘The Local’ posts are touching on this theme. Penderson is coming alive. Stay tuned.
Editions of The Local: