In a recent podcast episode, I was talking about the opinions and perceptions of different states, or regions of the country that people carry around with them that are sometimes (often?) dubious in nature. I encounter it with my own home state all the time. “West Virginia?!” people always say, before launching into a litany of predictable stereotypes. It used to make me angry, but now it merely annoys. I think it’s the lack of imagination that gets to me. ‘Cause it’s always the same crap, said in semi-jest. Inbreeding comedy… comments about indoor plumbing… moonshine jokes… Absolutely hilarious, and original too. Then, after I give them the squint of disapproval, they quickly add, “Pretty country, though.”
Also, many, many people don’t realize that Virginia and West Virginia are two different states. Just yesterday somebody said something about the governor of my home state dressing up as a Klansman, etc. I told her it was Virginia and she looked confused. I’m from West Virginia, I reminded her, and that didn’t seem to clear up anything.
Or maybe she was talking about Robert Byrd, and I was the one that was wrong?
In any case, I thought it might be fun to just pick a random state and see what opinions and perceptions we have about it. Even if we’ve never been there. It might be a big bust, but it seems like an interesting experiment in theory. I decided to go with Arkansas, for no good reason.
I’ve never set foot in the state, but here’s what I think about when I think about Arkansas:
- Southern, but more Texas-Southern than, say, Georgia or South Carolina. I’m not sure about the differences, but am confident there are some.
- Kinda poor, but not as poor as Mississippi, which is nearby, I think.
- Breeding ground for Clintons.
- Little Rock is the only city I can think of, and I believe it’s the capital.
- Lots of Dollar General stores.
- Lots of Dairy Queens.
- Country music reigns, and there might still be roadhouses where you can hear it played live.
- A lot like Tennessee but not nearly as cool. Like the zitty, bucktoothed sister of a prom queen.
- Pretty country, though.
That’s all I know about Arkansas. And some of it might not even be true. I didn’t do any research, obviously, and that’s the point. I’d like to know your thoughts about Arkansas, just right off the top of your head. If you’ve actually been there, your point of view will almost certainly be different than mine. So, let’s have at it. Use the comments section, if you’re so inclined.
And I need to call it a day here. I have to stop at Sam’s Club in Wilkes-Barre before work, to pick up some snacks ‘n’ shit for the employees who’ll be coming in for a “special project” on Sunday morning. I might get one of those delicious scoop cakes if you know what I’m talking about. Are you hip to the scoop cake? Highly recommended. Anyway… I need to go now.
Yesterday I uploaded a new podcast episode, for patrons. Episode 60! Can you believe that? I’m having trouble believing it. But I think it’s a pretty good episode and you can hear it right here. And this is the summary:
In this one I discuss some disturbing baseball news that’s being reported, the plumber/conference call pressure I’m feeling, some disgraceful Donny Osmond panhandling, year old seal feces, attempted trademarking of the word ‘chunky,’ and a possible ghost in the closet of a college student. And I close it out with yet another Sam’s Club anecdote. I hope you enjoy it. Thanks for listening, and thanks for the support!
You guys have yourselves a fantastic weekend.
I’ll see you again on Monday!