Sunday, May 16, 2010

Fountain of Youth

Let me say at the outset that there is nothing wrong with Douglas, Georgia. It's a lovely town with a nice set of one-ways and a bypass, through and around which the entire town's population goes about its daily business, waving to each other with one finger (the index one, not the middle one) from behind their steering wheels. Super nice people. Lovely azaleas. Wonderful churches. And a really big Wal-Mart.

In high school, I worked at the Golden Corral in Douglas to earn the money to pay for my first car --a 1978 baby blue Chevy Malibu. My friend Keith and I sanded it ourselves in an empty tobacco warehouse so that I wouldn't have to pay as much to have it painted. When the cover over the center of the steering wheel came loose one day, I stopped at Revco and picked up some super glue and glued the cover back on while I was driving and didn't realize I had glued my fingertips to the cover until I tried to make a turn.

But I digress.

Upon graduation, most of my friends headed for college at Georgia Southern, University of Georgia, or Valdosta State. But all of those schools were big and scary and still in Georgia and I wanted to go to a small, not-so-scary school in Mars Hill, North Carolina. So I did. And then after college (where I had majored in English -- they didn't have a quilting degree) I wanted to keep reading, so I applied for and got a teaching assistantship at Boise State. I took four years to finish a two year masters degree in English; managed a Fashion Bug for a while; moved to Phoenix for six months and then went back to Boise; managed an art gallery for a while; then Flamingo Joe finally proposed after four years of dating. Got married; moved to San Diego; moved to Georgia for law school; clerked at a firm in Columbus, Georgia; and then ended up in Tampa, Florida.

(When I was interviewing for a summer clerkship with a law firm in Macon, Georgia, the lawyer interviewing me looked at my resume and said, "My . . . you sure are worldly . . . I mean, you've sure been around . . . I mean . . . " I didn't get a callback from that interview and convinced myself that it was because the lawyer was too embarrassed to hire me after having basically called me a brazen hussy during the interview.)

So it's been twenty-three years since I've lived in Douglas, Georgia and I can tell you from experience that the water in Mars Hill, Boise, San Diego, Phoenix, Columbus, and even Macon, Georgia is better than the water in Douglas, Georgia.

And I don't say that to insult Douglas -- I say that to highlight the irony of reading the label on the water containers Grandma brought home from Wal-Mart last week:

I am living in Tampa, Florida, with my very own water treatment plant built by my Idahoan husband sitting in the front yard, drinking water from Douglas, Georgia. And it's not even fancy water! It's not water from a freshwater spring in Douglas, Georgia that can boast of healing minerals. I assume that "PROCESSED BY: Reverse Osmosis" is really just fancy talk for "turn on the faucet and fill up the container with the garden hose."

I am drinking Douglas tap water.

Surely I am not the only person who sees the irony in this.


  1. Your mom and dad have managed to survive the water! (From her Macon, Georgia friend.) LOL

  2. (The Flamingo has posted this lengthy email response to her blog post from the highest ranking Flamingo in the Flamingo Family for your edification . . .)

    Dear Frockling Flamingo,

    In regards to your lengthy discussion of the virtues or non-virtues of Douglas, Georgia water. While your reasoning was well coneived and much of it from your own personal experiences, I too know a great deal about Douglas, Georgia water. Ms. Flamingo, Douglas, Georgia water is such a precious commodity, that the City Commission thinks so highly of it that they want to strictly control the supply of it it by keeping the prices so high for the water that I think it ought to be traded on the commodities market to help control the supply. The City Commission thinks so much of of this rare commodity that it has increased the price of it over 50% in the past two years. If the Douglas City Commission thinks so highly of this commodity, surely it must gain more respect in your eye, and you should respect it. Secondly, that commodity is so highly thought of that a former chicken processor who closed down is opening back up because they highly prized the water that was in Douglas. Georgia. Now what can I say about that. The city Commission said that they so highly regarded the water of Douglas, Georgia, thtt whne they started the resupply to the processor, they would not, and I repeqt would not lower the price of it for the local citizens to benefit. They are so jealous of the commodity, that they want to keep all the profits for themselves. Now, would you not know, Ms Flamingo, that in the midst of turmoil and speculation that some capitalist would want to get involved to carry on free enterpise and make money. Thus you have a new kid on the block who has found a use for this valuable Douglas water had taken it a improved it with reverse osmosis and is making a profit on it. So you see the City Commission was not too dumb after all. Ms Flamingo, don't you understand? Its the good old american way. God!, I love this country!.


    Your Dad


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