It is time to answer the most common questions I have received about my trip to Kentucky:
What in Heaven would ever possess somebody to go to Kentucky, even for a visit?
Teresa’s significant other Ernie lives in Kuttawa, Kentucky. He is a good guy and I wanted to visit him on his own turf. However, the impetus for the trip was a PostSecret art display in Paducah. If you are asking yourself, “What is PostSecret?”, most likely you and I aren’t all that close.
Is the South as bad as it is portrayed by Hollywood and country music?
I never quite made it to the Deep South. I was always within safe driving distance of the Illinois border. In fact, Kentucky was a border state. They never joined the Confederate States of America. Kentucky tried to be all neutral during the Civil War and never really fronted for the Union either. That mostly makes Kentucky a big coward, but better yellow than a dirty Reb!
That being said, there are things that you hear in Kentucky that are pretty bad:
- “Down there is where the Klan held there parade a couple years ago.” (Incidentally, an awesome story about Ernie is that when the Klan held a parade in a neighboring town, he marched up to the Head Inbreeder and asked for an application. That my friends, takes courage.)
- “When they put up the new Courthouse, they had us tear down a tree where they lynched a little black kid. About 100 years ago a white woman was walking down the street and she said that a black kid whistled at her. So they decided to lynch him. However, he worked at a tobacco farm, so the farmer insisted that they wait to lynch him until after the harvest. When the harvesting was done, the townfolk came and got him and hung him from the tree next to the courthouse. That was about 100 years ago. They decided to cut that tree down last year. It was time for a new start.”
- “We shouldn’t go to Calvert City. They don’t like interracial couples in that town.”
- “What do you mean you don’t keep your gas pack outside?”
- “I reckon…”
With all of that being said, by far and away the worst town that we voyaged through during our time down there was Cairo, Illinois. In fact, Cairo might be the new crappiest town I have ever been in. It certainly gives the towns of Beaver, Fort Dodge and Newton a run for their money.
I do have to give the people of Illinois some credit. Right next to Cairo was a town called Future City. By the looks of the disrepair that has fallen on Future City, the founders are banking on the future to be similar to the futures predicted by movies like Mad Max or Planet of the Apes.
What is a Gravity Pull Hill?
A Gravity Pull Hill is a hill where if you park you car and put it in neutral, some unseen force will push your uphill. We did park Ernie’s car at the base of the hill. After a few moments we were pulled uphill.
Now there are a couple of urban legends surrounded this particular hill. One is that this hill is the site of a spot where a man strapped his cheatin’ wife to the back of his wagon and drug her to her death. Her ghost pulls your car up the hill.
Another legend is that a man and his daughter had car troubles at this spot. When they got out the car, they were ran over by a truck. It is their ghosts that are pushing your car up the hill.
Another legend states that if you cover your trunk with baby powder, when you get to the top of the hill you will find 6 hand prints on the trunk of the car.
The true scientific explanation for a gravity hill is that it is an optical illusion. Although the hill looks like it goes uphill, it actually goes downhill. Next time I’m in Kentucky I will see if science is telling the truth.
What is the story behind the Abraham Lincoln bust that you busted up?
The guy who lived in the house next to Ernie’s passed away recently. Ernie and his sister bought the house for 1500 dollars. They also bought the lot next to it for 200 dollars. Strapped to the front porch of the house was a bust of Abraham Lincoln. I was intrigued by this bust as soon as I saw it.
I couldn’t tell who it was from Teresa’s car. I figured since we were down South, it was most likely a bust of Jefferson Davis or Lee or Stonewall Jackson. When we got there I didn’t know that Ernie owned this house. I thought that somebody lived there and just didn’t keep care of their yard. I didn’t want to go trespassing just to get a better looking.
I had visions of some dude without teeth coming out with a shotgun telling me to “Get off my land!”
Later I found out that Ernie owned this house and said that I could have the bust if I wanted it. On Sunday I made my way through the yard and up the porch to claim my prize. I was surprised to find out that the bust was actually of Abraham Lincoln.
As I began to work the bust free from the nail that held it down, Abe’s head broke off in my hand.
I was aghast. One thought raced across my mind. “I’m one of them now.”
How was the PostSecret display?
It was phenomenal. I had seen the majority of the secrets displayed in the books or on the website, but it is a whole different experience to actually see the real cards. I loved it enough, that I’m considering going up to Minneapolis to see the display again when it moves there in a couple of months.
Was Lambert’s really worth a 90 minute wait?
You better believe it. It was worth the 90 minute wait plus the 90 minute drive to get there. If you are ever in Sikeston, Missouri do yourself the huge favor and go there and eat. The service was phenomenal. The food was exquisite. The portions were incredible. The fresh hot throwed rolls were perhaps the second best restaurant rolls I’ve ever had in my life. The sorghum was awesome. I also came to the conclusion that I could live of fried okra until my heart gave out from having a diet consisting entirely of fried food.
I loved it so much that I even bought a shirt.
So you went to a Southern Baptist church service, how was that?
I would go back, if not for the music, for the gay bashing. Seriously, I could have done without the gay bashing, but the music was incredible. In fact, I would go so far as to say it was the second best praise band this guy has ever heard.
It was also long. We arrived at the service at about 11:15. The service started at about 11:30. We ducked out at about 2:30. The service was still going strong.
I’m not sure how many of my other friends would have enjoyed the service. The energy was good. However, it seemed like a lot of the service was entertainment. The praise band played for over an hour. There was an interpretive dance thrown in for good measure.
It was okay, but I don’t think I learned anything from going to the service. I learned a lot from a cultural perspective. I don’t think I learned anything about Christianity. The sermon was entertaining and it had lots of energy and it got you going, but I don’t think that there was a lesson in there that I could use to apply to my life and make myself a better Christian and therefore a better person. I don’t even think that there was anything in there to make me think. What is the old saying? “Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.“
You went to the Abraham Lincoln Museum. Aren’t museums boring?
I have a rule I use when evaluating people. “People that bore easily are boring people.” That is on page 17 of my new book: The Wit and Witticism of Christopher D. Bennett.
If I failed to answer your question, hit me up with another question and I’ll drop some more knowledge on you.