Wednesday, June 21, 2006

First Entry- Introduction

2 bits, 4 bits, 6 bits a dollar...
These pictures are from Hank Haven (PA). I put it here for Paul Gibson's (CA) inspiration and I'm looking forward to his stories. Recently, he, BJ Rowland McCallum (TX), Brant Buck (LR, Ark) and Nancy Collins Deisch (Podunk, Ark), all baby boomers in the class of '68, wondered how to start a blog to share stories - theirs and those of their families or just some reflections. Our common demonimator is growing up in Forrest City, Arkansas, a small town of about 12,000 on Crowley's Ridge about 35 miles west of Memphis. BJ forwarded their email to me. Hence this blog start up.

Why "Peach Fuzz" Chronicles? Peaches have signficance because the town was surrounded by prosperous peach farms at one time. All Forrest City folks have memories of peaches. Peach fuzz has several connotations: Youth mostly -- but also it is a fluffy, thin coating that sheds to reveal something sweet, fleshy and palatable.

This is an open blog. The only rule is "play nice." Everyone is wanted. No grades on spelling or writing skills. Don't worry. It won't go on your permanent record. (Have you found yours yet? I'm still looking for mine).

People who grew up in Forrest City are well known by outsiders to be a bit "different" and they seem to have a bond wherever life takes them, regardless of age or circumstances...or even whether they like each other. People who even pass through for a few years or visit for a short time never forget it. Some of us still live within a few hours drive. Some of us left for distant places as children, some as adults, many after college, some in retirement. Some never left. Some of us are just gone, period. But stories live on...

I live in Florida. My age group is all over the United States, now in our 50's, we are widely divergent in our paths in life. We love telling stories to each other. We love our parents' and grandparents' and great grandparent's stories, our children's stories. We find interest in the stories of our friends and foes also. We do it all the time by emails that get circulated. Paul, BJ and Nancy suggested we find a place to call our own. OK. Stand up and holler!

So being a blogger already, I loved their idea and just ran with the ball. This is our blog inspired by them, for anyone with Forrest City connections to share stories and oh yes, plenty of pictures. This is a call for everyone to join in and share that special thing we have about telling stories. And guess what? If you want to be anonymous you can... or change the names to protect your gossipy ass...and you know what else? If no one enjoys our stories but us, then that's just peachy keen. We're different like that! Well that's my 2 'bout 4, Paul?

Dora Class of 68, 8/18/06

I would like to thank those who made it possible for each and every one from Forrest City to reach back in time and bring some terrific memories back to life again. I think as we age, we sometimes lose site of how all the things that happened to us along our earthly journey had a purpose Every thought, decision. laugh, tear, uncertainty, basically every emotion we had made the mold for the person we are today.

Of Course we all had pains from the past, but the key to a blog is that we can pull any memories we want and make them come to life with the detailed minds we seem to have for things gone by so many years but as fresh in our minds as the peaches at the peach shed we all loved.

Another beauty is that the cliques are gone. Oh, they served a purpose at the time but we are learning from the cliques within our own grades and other grades and realizing, Hey they were just as cool as we were! Damn I wish I had known them better. It is that mystery bond of a childhood in Forrest City that not only does not go away but grows in strength with the years and encompasses all of us from around the world in all walks of life. Yes, This blog makes us realize what a precious gift we had of living in Forrest City as children. We laugh about the bad things but you know what? It was the bad things that prepared us for life. I think the town taught us well about life.

So this is a big love filled thanks to those who had the idea and made it happen and to those people who share their stories of living in the Delta. I can honestly say I love the stories and smile at how mischevious yet not harmful we were. We were just having fun and growing to be people who can survive the hands of time, if in mind only.


Blogger Administrator said...

A colossal THANKS for setting this up, Sula! Your title is poetic and appropriate - much better than say..."Cottonseed Oil Chronicles" (remember that aroma in the fall air?). I think your introduction really captured what is unique about the bonds of place, experience, and friendship that we all share. Over the years I have noticed that it is very rare to see this kind of on-going sense of connection people from other places and times. Maybe it WAS the peaches...

Immediately your title triggered two short memories. The first was my initial experience eating DELICIOUS homemade peach icecream on a hot summer night at Billy Tucker's house (my best friend and neighbor at that time who moved to FL at age 9). The 2nd memory was of shaving the "peach fuzz" from my face with Bev Machen's electric razor - with much prodding and laughing from Jim. I think we were about 12 years old... BTW, I also remember eating lots of homemade peach icecream at Jim's house over the years.

I really look forward to the stories and photos that I anticipate will be posted by our unique group of friends and former classmates. Oral storytelling is fast becoming a lost art in this cyber age. Perhaps this blog will also inspire us in that arena too.

I really look forward to the photos and stories that I anticipate will be shared here. Now that most of us are past 50 - and most everyone's kids are grown up - it is "safer" to let the truth be told! lol

Paul Gibson

Thu Jun 22, 06:58:00 AM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

love it Paul-hope to hear more soon.

Thu Jun 22, 11:35:00 AM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for this blog! It reminds me that, once upon a time, we could roam the streets and have a wonderful time in a carefree, safe, and slow paced little town in the South.

Sat Jul 22, 02:49:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello to all my Forrest City friends! It has been a long time, but thanks to the internet I now feel connected. I am so sorry I missed the Class of '67 reunion. I am sure my address was lost as I was in The Netherlands on an expatriate assignment for 3 years. I would love to have seen everyone. My email address is - please catch me up on everyone. Maybe I will make the 50th! Ruth Ware Johnson - - CA

Tue Oct 02, 07:53:00 PM 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Came across this by accident. Please list my brother John as a deceased member of the class of 1970. John died in 1977 after a courageous battle with cancer.
I remember the very cute cheerleaders in the 60's who practiced out on the high school lawn across from my house on Graham Street. I thought they were the greatest! Cile M. Brooks

Sun May 18, 03:31:00 PM 2008  

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