Saturday, April 7, 2012

A-Z Challenge - G is for Gossip

Appalachia and gossip go together. Way back when roads weren't as good, phones weren't as prevalent and Internet was unheard of, the human chain was the way news was passed. Often you see folks leaning out of cars at mailboxes, or two trucks side by side stopped in the middle of the road, filling each other in on family, neighbors, and friends.

Gossip is sometimes malicious, sometimes of the "bless her heart" variety (as in "Bless her heart, she couldn't help it that her husband fell for someone else.), or a friendly exchange between friends.

Just last week, one of my neighbors (who'll you'll hear more about in the letter P) and I ran into each other at the gas station. We hugged and caught up on family stuff. Her father's moved in ("Damn, I can't wonder nekked through the house no more"), her sister has a new dog ("We got the wide ass open variety of Weimeramer"), and she's getting knee surgery. We parted ways but caught up to each other on our crooked road (see the letter C). She pulled over in the volunteer fire department parking lot and flagged me down. That's when I got the real juice.

A few of our neighbor's up on the hard road (paved versus my 1/2 mile gravel drive) have been in a legal dispute. One family's pre-teen boys have been driving four-wheelers and even the family trucks back and forth, loudly and dangerously. A big fight ensued and apparently the family putting the charges on record, caught the daddy of these boys on video tape yelling for the other father to come out into the street so he could "whoop his ass." Just another day down in the holler.

Update: Since I pre-wrote this post, all hell broke out. There was a sure enough pounding that took place in the middle of the hard road. Sheriff came out. Ambulance, too. One neighbor ended up in the hospital, the other with warrants. Ah gee. Country Living.

So, heard any good stories lately? Anyone in your life a gossip?


  1. LOL, sounds much like where I live. Small towns and gossip go hand in hand!

  2. It's really amazing how quickly news travels in a small town. The internet has nothing on it.

  3. Gossip makes for some of the most outrageous plotting ideas, don't it? You sometimes even have to trim it down to make it more, well, believable, cause dang neighbors can definitely get freakier than fiction when they're bored!

    :D Thanks for an entertaining post!

  4. Oh my gosh!! Country living, eh?

    We are new new to this area-but I can tell you we are in a wee town of no more than 450. Bought an old church we are renovating. AND-the people before us? They had their own little grow-op in here...eeK. Health wise this house is fine, very small operation, but gossip wise, good and bad, I am sure there a few tongues a wagging about the new people in the old church!

    Thanks for your post...!

  5. Yikes! Too much adventure in your neighborhood.

    Whenever people talk about others--because we never really see things clearly--always carries the possibility of doing damage.

  6. Donna - you're right. I'm always conscious of their being multiple sides of any story and am not terribly judgmental as a result. And yes, this business is a mess!

    Deb - how cool you're in an old Church. Though it sounds like perhaps you shouldn't breathe too deeply.

    Vero - yes, what's that old saying "Real life is stranger than fiction."

  7. It's amazing how fast news can travel between people in a small town . . .

  8. Gossip's always going around. I can't help but listen when there's a juicy story to be told, but I hope no bad gossip is going around about me. If it were I can't see where it would be true.

    A Few Words
    An A to Z Co-host blog

  9. I swear it's like we really are neighbors. Something almost exactly like that happened in our small town. Gotta love the gossip:)

  10. I live in a small town, and I am oh-so-careful about what I say. It will get around to everyone.

  11. Gossip is the gear that makes small towns turn...

    Glad to have found you thru AtoZ!

  12. I like how "Bless her heart" lightens the gossip.

  13. really caught the flavor of the area. Well done!

  14. Ive moved to a city from a very small country town and it's funny that there is more privacy here in the city - because in the country every one knows what everyone else is doing. Love country town gossip.
    Wagging Tales

  15. Sounds like my school. News spreads faster among teachers than anyone else, I swear.

    Very entertaining post!

  16. GEE ... gossip is gross. Great post for G-day!

    I’m stopping in as an A to Z blogger. I invite you to visit my blogs, leaving a link to your own post, so my readers can find you too!

    All on and all in the A to Z Challenge:

    Heart of a Ready Writer – Bible &Devotional
    Meme Express – Daily Blog Prompts (A to Z)
    Nickers and Ink – Featuring favorite classic poems from A to Z
    Practically at Home – See what fellow writers are cited – with article links!
    The Mane Point –Pprofiling special horses from A to Z
    Working in Words – Writing How-to’s

    Simply Snickers is not posting daily in the A to Z Challenge, but you are invited to comment with your A to Z/NaPoWriMo poetry links!

    Click my name/icon for links to all these blogs! Happy A-to-Z!

  17. This is great! Reading your posts just reminds me again of the importance of really KNOWING the type of people we're writing about. I guess I mean authenticity in writing--knowing the idioms, the way of life, the localisms.

  18. Thanks y'all for kind comments and laughter - can you tell I'm having fun with this?

  19. And we city dwellers think we get all the drama and hijinks! Emotions boil over wherever we live, don't they? And writers are there in a flash with their mental notebooks and pens at the ready to get it all recorded!

    Loved this post, and as usual, I love your style. You have a real ear for the flavour of conversations and gift for conveying atmosphere.

  20. You live in a rough neighborhood! (Just kidding.)
    Had to laugh at the "Bless her heart" part. I live in the South and someone once told me the whole phrase is "Bless your heart, you stupid fool." Said in a loving way of course!

  21. Found you via A to Z. Stopped by to swap howdies. Enjoyed your blog. Life sounds fun down in the hollar!

  22. I grew up in a small town where everyone knows everyone (and their business). Even though I now live over 3,000 miles away, I feel like people there still know my business!


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