'Sarah, give me the sheriff ... Ange, this is Barn ...'
Gonna stray a lil' bit away from sports for a moment ...
I lived for couple of years in North Carolina, or Carolina as it's called if you either live or are from there, and have kind of a kinship for the Tar Heel State's favorite son – Andy Griffith, and after hearing of his passing, figured I would muse on that subject a lil' ...
While Mr. Griffith (to call him Andy here might be overstepping) is best known for the fictional town of Mayberry, NC, and was from the actually town of Mt. Airy, NC, my connection is from two communities in the eastern part of the state not far from Raleigh – Goldsboro and Lucama, NC.
In the early 1990's, I was working for a lil' weekly newspaper in a lil' town of Fremont, North Carolina, just about 13 miles north of the big city of Goldsboro. It was here I was told, at Goldsboro High School, in the early 1950's that Mr. Griffith taught English and also trod the boards in front o' the foot lights, acting, in a community theater company.
As far as Lucama – well the town's name is a story unto itself ... again, was told and have no reason to doubt the good people of Carolina, it was founded by a Revolutionary War hero who named it after his three daughters Lucille, Camille and Mary – thus, Lu-Ca-Ma. Don't know if it's true or not, but as any good Carolinian would say 'right fine story ...'
Well, supposedly, Mr. Griffith was dating a gal from Lucama, and as was the tradition in those days, they would sit out on the front porch with a chaperone – in this case, the girl's mother. Don't know how much 'courtin' or sparkin' went on, but was told the mother told stories o' all the 'crazy goings on' in Lucama & all o' the 'crazy people' & I was told 'bout 75% if not more of' those stories later became scripts for The Andy Griffith Show. Don't know if it's true or not, but as any good Carolinian would say 'right fine story ...'
I always enjoyed watching 'The Andy Griffith Show' growin' up, but after livin' in Carolina, when I later watched re-runs as an adult, loved listening to Mr. Griffith talk & catch all lil' sayings, witticisms, nuances & colloquialisms, the speech that was as true to the Tar Heel State as much as a muggy summer day at a pig pickin' complete with sweet tea, coleslaw, corn sticks, brunswick stew and pecan pie.
Of course we can't forget the life lessons taught by this show – the difference between right & wrong, between good & bad, taught with such a soft, subtle and humorous touch, one never realized they were being schooled ... lessons that now, some 50 years later, still apply ...
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