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Entries in William Least-Heat Moon (63)


Blue Highways: Selma, Alabama

Unfolding the Map

Click on Thumbnail for MapWe drive with William Least Heat-Moon (LHM) into Selma, Alabama where so much changed for America on March 7, 1965.  We will also leave with him in a little fear of arrest.  To see where this sea change in American civil rights occurred which led, forty-three years later, to the election of the first African-American President of the United States, click on the thumbnail of the map at right.  Leave a comment, if you'd like!

Book Quote(s)

LHM:  "Doesn't sound like much has changed.

White man named Ray:  "Okay, sonny-jim.   I'll tell you about change....Change ruined this town.  Bar I just come from, three of them sittin' in there big as sin.  Fifteen years ago you couldna hired a nigger to go in there.  You talk about change, and I say to you, 'Go to hell.'

"....That whole march was a TV stunt.  Niggers knew what would happen here.  That's why they came.  Hardly none of them lived here.  They knew the sheriff had himself a reputation.  They picked him, not the town.  Well, they got what they were lookin' for.  I'm sick of goin' over and over it.

"I'm tellin' you sickin' dogs and poundin' the niggers was a lack of ignorance.  We shoulda paid them no mind.  Then the cameras woulda stayed in the bags.  That's what ruined us - photographers and reporters.  Like with the Klan.  Some Grand Genie comes crawlin' outa his rotten stump, and there go the cameras and the tongue-cluckin' over the poor South....I'm sick of talkin' about it."

Blue Highways: Part 3, Chapter 3

LHM: "I'm trying to find out if things have changed since the march.

James Walker: "Tell you in three words.  Aint nothin' changed.

Charles Davis:  "Made both marches.  People be sayin' we wasted our time, but things are better.  Least a little bit.

"....But lotta times it's like always.  Take yesterday.  I put a quarter in a sodapop machine at the gas station.  Money keeps comin' down.  Two honkies sit watchin'.  I ask if the machine was broke, and one honker says it takes thirty cents now.  Machine says twenty-five on it.  Then he says, 'Wondered how long fore you figured it out.'  He couldn't tell me they changed it.  I said, 'Don't take long to figure you.' and walked off.  Other honker says, 'Want me to whup the nigger?'  Five years ago I'da fought him.  Now I try to ignore it.  But hey, I used to follow Malcom X."

Blue Highways: Part 3, Chapter 4

Downtown Selma, Alabama. Photo by Carol McKinney Highsmith and hosted at Wikimedia Commons. Click on photo to go to host site.Selma, Alabama

In March, 1965, I was not even a year and a half old.  So I was quite unconscious of the earthquake in the social and political landscape shaking around me.

In March, 1965, a bunch of marchers from Selma and around the country tried to cross a bridge as they commenced a 50 mile or so march to the state capital of Montgomery.  At the far end of the Edmund Pettus Bridge, they were met by police on foot with clubs and tear gas, and mounted police with clubs.  The repulsing of the march became the United States' Bloody Sunday, and not only did it galvanize the burgeoning Civil Rights movement, but it also outraged millions of ordinary Americans who up to that point had ignored the fact that a significant minority of Americans were being denied their basic rights.  After Selma, when peaceful marchers were gassed, clubbed into submission and mowed down by horses, nobody could ignore the hypocrisy of the United States of America's ideals, and its actions and inactions toward its black citizens.

What happened that day sounds terrifying.  This is an excerpt of an interview with a woman who participated in that march.

"'The horses…were more humane than the troopers; they stepped over fallen victims,’ Amelia Boynton later recalled. ‘As I stepped aside from a troopers club, I felt a blow on my arm…Another blow by a trooper, as I was gasping for breath, knocked me to the ground and there I lay, unconscious…’."

From Bloody Sunday in Selma, Alabama posted on Jeremy

When LHM travels through Selma, looking to learn if anything had changed, he finds little to encourage him.  Some white residents are clearly sick of discussing what had happened just little over a decade before.  Some black residents are convinced that nothing had changed, and that the Civil Rights Movement had petered out and died.  LHM is told that even if they could frequent establishments where whites go, most black residents wouldn't want to frequent them.  He is bluntly warned by James Walker and Charles Davis, two black men that he interviews in a black section of town, that the cops will target him as a drug dealer just for talking with them, and he leaves Selma with some fear that the police will arrest him as he heads out of town.  Clearly, despite political changes, social change comes slowly and the divides remain strong.

I believe that, despite the divides that still exist in America today, the Civil Rights Movement caused a huge upheaval in American politics in society that is still growing.  It unleashed political forces that led to more educational opportunities not only for blacks but for other minorities as well.  Armed with education, more minorities began to make inroads into politics and business.  We still see ghettos, incredible poverty among blacks and latinos, and the current political backlash.  But whatever you think about the state of our country today, the fact is that without the Civil Rights Movement, a young Barack Obama would have never become president of the United States.  We are still on the path, I believe, toward making America's true ideals of liberty and equality for all a reality - but we're getting there despite the political pendulum swings.

Back to me.  Some 33 years after The U.S. Bloody Sunday, I stood at a military and police barricade in Portadown, Northern Ireland.  Thousands of Unionist Orangemen had marched up and were demanding that their right to march through the Catholic area of the city on their traditional route be honored.  Inside, residents of the neighborhood were preparing to sit on the ground and engage in tactics of non-violence to oppose the police and the marchers in case the British government changed its mind at the last minute and agreed to let the marchers through.  Black police helicopters circled overhead, and both police and British soldiers had their weapons at ready - who they would use them against was anyone's guess.  The tension was extremely high, but amazingly, both sides remained non-violent, and after presenting their written protest, the Unionist marchers took an alternative route to the church where they held speeches and rallies.

I may not have been aware of what happened in Selma, Alabama on March 7, 1965 due to my age.  But what happened there affected me decades later, as I watched what appeared to be two intractable foes in Northern Ireland both use language and tactics that were first used by Gandhi in India, and refined by Martin Luther King, Jr. and SNCC in the Civil Rights Movement.  What happened in Selma not only had repercussions across time, but across the globe.  It brought out the worst but also the best in America, and I have to believe that the world is better for it.  Elections come and go, the pendulum swings from the political right to the political left, but the events in Selma took America one step closer to meeting the democratic ideals it set for itself in its Constitution.

If you want to know more about Selma

City of Selma and Dallas County
Concordia College of Selma
Jeremy Bloody Sunday in Selma, Alabama
Selma city website
Selma Daily Photo (blog)
Selma Times-Journal (newspaper)
Selma to Montgomery marches - National Historic Road
StoryCorps: Selma
Wikipedia: Selma
Wikipedia: Selma to Montgomery marches

Next up: Uniontown and Demopolis, Alabama


Blue Highways: Maplesville, Stanton and Plantersville, Alabama

Unfolding the Map

Click on Thumbnail for MapWe make our way south with William Least Heat-Moon (LHM), in the late 1970s, heading down toward Selma, Alabama to learn whether Selma had changed 10 years after Martin Luther King's death.  But, we drive through the friendly towns of Maplesville, Stanton and Plantersville where people wave to strangers.  Click on the thumbnail of the map at right to see where these towns lie on our route.  Leave a comment - are you a waver to strangers passing by in cars?

Book Quote

"By midmorning I was following route 22, as I had from the Alabama line, on my way to Selma.  The truck license plates said HEART OF DIXIE, and I was going into the middle of the heart.  West of the bouldery Coosa River, I saw an old man plowing an old field with an old horse, and once more I wasn't sure whether I was seeing the end or beginning.  Then an outbreak of waving happened - first at Maplesville, again in Stanton, again in Plantersville; from galleries and sidewalks people waved.  Where folks are friendly."

Blue Highways: Part 3, Chapter 3


Downtown Maplesville, Alabama. Click on image to go to photo on Flickr.

Maplesville, Stanton and Plantersville, Alabama

Waving.  Such a simple thing to do.  We wave when we want to capture someone's attention, either because we want to acknowledge them, or indicate trouble, or dismiss them.

What LHM describes in the quote, the friendly folks in the south who wave from their stoops and sidewalks, is pretty much what I've experienced while traveling in the South.  Actually, it is what I've experienced traveling in pretty much any rural area.

When driving across rural areas of the United States, I was always surprised when, on a lonely road, I might pass a pickup going the other direction and the guy driving would either wave, or simply stick up his index finger off the top of the steering wheel.  This man didn't know me and was probably quite aware that I was not from anywhere around there.  Why?  Because I wasn't driving a pickup but a sedan.  So, it always was a breath of fresh air in a car filled with the smell of Cheetos or some other cheesy comestible snack to get that brief second of acknowledgment by a stranger before they zipped past.

My father liked to wave to the train.  My family has some property in a remote valley in Northern California that had train tracks running right through the middle.  Our cabin was situated about 50 feet to the side of the tracks.  Every day in the summer, one to two small passenger trains, and then a large passenger steam engine from my hometown, heading to the next town over, would go by.  My father would stand by the tracks, usually shirtless and in shorts because it was often hot, and wave and put on a show for the tourists passing by on the train.  He waved, all the while yelling "how are you doing?"  "Look at you!"  He would point at people and shout "Bless your little heart!"  The tourists loved it.  I don't know how many family trip photo albums or Super-8 movies stored in attics and boxes my father is in, but I'm sure there are quite a few of them.  I should look it up on YouTube.  Maybe someone has uploaded one from the 1970s!

Driving through small towns, one often gets the same nice, friendly waves.  Whether they are meant as such or whether they are simply convention with no feeling behind them is not for me to say.  All I know is that the feeling of a place can be dramatically different if people are waving at you as you drive by in your car rather than staring at you from stoops or giving sullen looks.  I at least have a better feeling about a place.  As I've written before, small towns often have dark undercurrents behind them in a way that is much more malicious than cities, which hang their dirty laundry in the open for everyone to see.  Small towns can be hotbeds of dirty secrets that fester because they are insular and because people's business can't be lost in a multitude of other things like it can in a city.  In a city, darkness can hide in the open daylight.  In a small town, darkness must truly hide.  But waving puts a nice veneer on everything, and for tourists passing through, that's all that matters.

Of course, I am not suggesting that Maplesville, Stanton or Plantersville have any of these problems.  They are probably like other small towns throughout America.  In fact, Stanton is known as the site of the Battle of Ebenezer Church, a desperate stand by Confederate forces after days of retreat punctuated by skirmishes to stop Union troops from taking the manufacturing center of Selma.  Outnumbered two to one, they might have succeeded had reinforcements arrived as planned to attack the rear of the Union army.  At such a site, where much blood was spilled, a simple wave to a stranger near the now tranquil battlefield nowadays holds a lot of symbolism.

 If you want to know more about Maplesville, Stanton and Plantersville

Battle of Ebenezer Church
Battle of Ebenezer Church site photos
History of Plantersville
Wikipedia: Maplesville
Wikipedia: Plantersville

Next up: Selma, Alabama


Blue Highways: Alexander City, Alabama

Unfolding the Map

Click on Thumbnail for MapWe enter a new state with William Least Heat-Moon (LHM), Alabama, and make a quick stop in Alexander City to spend the night.  The course of a conversation there will send him to the epicenter of the American Civil Rights Movement, Selma.  We'll stop along with him.  If you wish to see where we currently rest, click on the thumbnail at right for an interactive map.  If you have any comments about this or your own literary journeys, please feel free to leave one.

Book Quote

"The woman was an authority.  Whatever there was, she knew it.  Her face, pallid like a partly boiled potato, looked as if carved out with a paring knife.  She was a matron of note in Alexander City.  Two other women, dark in eighteen-hole tans, sat with her on a bench alongside the tennis courts, while their daughters took lessons under the lights.  The discussion on the bench was Tupperware.  The potato had just said, 'for a shower gift, you can't do better than a Pak-N-Stor.'  Another explained how her eldest had received an upright freezer full of nesting food containers from the Walkers.

Blue Highways:  Part 3, Chapter 2


Downtown Alexander City, Alabama. Image hosted on Wikipedia.

Alexander City, Alabama

Every town has one, at least if you want to believe the movies or television.  It's usually someone who has access to everything that has happened to everyone in the town because of his or her ability to inhabit many different social circles, or his or her way to get access to what is usually privileged information.  It could be the town barber or hairdresser, the corner grocer, the trash man, the babysitter to many different families, the local banker.  It could be a fortune teller, or the wise woman or man that everyone goes to for advice.

Sometimes these people are motivated to do good things for people.  Mr. Oleson in Little House on the Prairie was one of those grocers who had the best interests of people at heart, even though he occasionally was swayed by his shrewish wife to use his knowledge for something hurtful.  Sometimes the person might be motivated by pure evil; Mr. Potter, the banker in It's a Wonderful Life, used his knowledge of the pulse of the town to try to run George Bailey and the Building and Loan out of business, and then get his revenge on George Bailey.

Many times, however, the motivations of the town gossip, know-it-all, maven or patron, whatever you want to call them, are more complex.  Marie Laveau, the Creole fortune teller used her influence with the Creole, Black and white populations of New Orleans to build her reputation and power, simply through the force of knowing, through her many networks, who was sleeping with who, who had committed what crime, and other good tidbits of information.  She could tell a mean fortune with that kind of knowledge, and she was not a woman to be trifled with.  In fiction, Yente in Fiddler on the Roof was another of these people whose motivations were good. In keeping with the tradition of her village, she knew the situation of everyone in the village so that she could arrange matches.  Unfortunately, sometimes the matches, though practical, went against the true feelings of those she tried to pair up.

That being said, that person in the town who knows everything has a role.  They can be loved and admired and eagerly sought out for their advice and knowledge, acting as an unofficial counselor or therapist.  They can be avoided or warily sidestepped, and the person who is avoiding them can try to keep their business as private as possible.

I think of the town gossip as a sort of pre-computer combination of Google, Facebook and  The town gossip, like Google, has all the information one needs to know at hand.  Using such a tool of knowledge, there is usually a price.  One price might be privacy, as once a person's needs become known to the town gossip, their business might be made public.  Like Facebook, the town gossip makes their opinions known and encourages the opinions of others, so that a conversation becomes sort of like a town Facebook "Wall."  Like, a town gossip will know who is looking for what, and may under certain conditions bring people together.

I wonder if, in these days of 24 hour online information, the town gossip is disappearing?  If we can arrange dates, broadcast our thoughts, and look up all the information on anything we need on the internet, does anyone under 60 years old really listen to such people any more.  Do the town gossips sit lonely in the town square, remembering a time past when they were needed and wanted and hoping that someone will listen to them, seek their advice, or ask for their help?

If you want to know more about Alexander City

Alexander City Jazz Festival
Alexander City Online
Alexander City Outlook (newspaper)
Wikipedia: Alexander City

Next up: Maplesville, Stanton and Plantersville, Alabama


Blue Highways: Conyers, Georgia

Unfolding the Map

Click on Thumbnail for MapWilliam Least Heat-Moon (LHM) spends some time at a Presbyterian cemetery and listening to repentence and the possibility of redemption on the radio.  It seems that Conyers has a lot of that, provoking me to begin what will probably be a two part thought exercise (continuing with my next post on the Monastery of the Holy Spirit) on spirituality.  I might have written about it once before, but what else do we talk about if not politics, religion and sex (and not necessarily in that order)?  Click the tiny map at right to see the exact spot of the cemetery where LHM ate breakfast.  Also, let me know you're out there - we've had over a thousand unique viewers this past month.  Thanks for reading!  Comment a hello!

Book Quote

"That morning, down on route 20 near Conyers, Georgia, while I ate breakfast in the Smyrna Presbyterian Church cemetery, I read the Scotch-Irish names on tombstones and listened to the radio.  A stained-glass voice beating repentence into the ungraced at 95.6 megahertz a second may have influenced what happened next."

Blue Highways: Part 2, Chapter 17

Old town in Conyers, Georgia. Photo by "Skarg" and hosted at Wikimedia Commons. Click on photo to go to host page.

Conyers, Georgia

I can't remember if I wrote much about religion and my relationship to it in any previous post.  I've done so many now, what I remember doing and what I've actually done may be two different things.  The reason I bring it up now is that this post and the next post, based as always on the book quotes I cull from Blue Highways, will have to do with religion and spirituality and the reflections and thoughts that the quotes pull from me.

LHM briefly describes sitting in a cemetery in Conyers, in the Smyrna Presbyterian Church to be exact, eating breakfast and listening to a Christian radio station.  His choice of words is pretty meaningful..."beating repentence into the ungraced..."

The facets of religion fascinate me, and sometimes repel and horrify me.  It's amazing to me that a Christian faith that emphasizes the most empathetic, tolerant and compassionate responses to most any human situation (pretty much everything that Jesus Christ taught) and at the same time the most violent, petty, and vengeful responses to what are often relatively minor infractions (pretty much most of the Old Testament), can exist in the same faith.  It helps explain why within the Christian faith a man like Rev. Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church (warning - the link to Westboro Baptist Church may be deemed offensive and does not represent the views of this writer) can protest at the funerals of Iraq War veterans with the twisted logic that America's tolerance of homosexuality has brought God's punishment and wrath upon us, AND produce the beautiful service to humanity performed by the likes of Mother Teresa and others.

Christianity is a large tent, but the religious airwaves tend to resound, like the political airwaves, with the most conservative voices.  These are the voices that argue that if you're not Christian, you are destined for a horrible afterlife.  These are the voices that emphasize that the only true way to redemption is through acceptance of a particular Christianity, a particular Christ.  These are the voices that harangue, listing the horrors that befell people who did not believe, did not accept, and did not practice their Christianity and elevate their Christ.

As a person who is a somewhat practicing Catholic, I find these voices have gained strength in my own Church as it responds to the changes in the secular world by pulling in on itself.  Suddenly, it seems that there are litmus tests within the Catholic Church.  A true Catholic accepts what an increasingly conservative heirarchy deems to be important.  When I was growing up, the Church was a loud voice speaking out for justice for the poor, against militarism, and always for the common good.  Now, it seems that the Church speaks loudest against abortion, whispers against the death penalty, turns a blind eye toward militarism, minimizes its own mistakes and criminal actions (pedophilia) and generally conveys a "with us or against us" attitude.  How else can one interpret refusing communion to politicians and other notables who express their personal feelings on issues, silencing important thinkers within its ranks, and refusing venues to those whose opinions may be counter to the official opinion of the Church on various issues?  While the world embraces democracy, the Church remains mired in its opposite.

How interesting that LHM begins this brief exploration of spirituality in Conyers, a city that has evidently experienced mystical apparitions of Jesus and Mary - years after LHM passed through.  Christ may be the Son of God and Man, but in Catholicism, Mary is the uber-woman.  She was the virgin mother of Christ, and her compassion for humanity, even after her death, has elevated her to the highest levels.  Catholics pray to her for her intercession on their problems.  People have seen her in visions that have appeared throughout history; for example, to Juan Diego in Mexico as La Virgen de Guadalupe, or the apparitions in Medjugorje, Bosnia & Herzogovina.  It can be fodder for jokes, but people claim to have seen her visage on burnt tortillas (click here for a likeness on a cheese sandwich sold on EBay).  Her statues have been claimed to weep blood tears.  In Conyers, a housewife named Nancy Fowler claimed, starting in 1990, to receive visions and messages from the Virgin Mary.  Pilgrims flocked to Conyers to hear Mary's words, which alternately admonished and offered prayers for humanity, and warned of violent conflagrations to come.  Ms. Fowler's visions and messages lasted until 1998, when they suddenly ceased.

Where do I stand on such issues?  I consider myself spiritual, and try to be a good person. I fail sometimes, but I like to think I succeed more often than not.  I'm less enamored of the rites of my Church than I am in the actions of people within it.  I am of the opinions that humans create their own realities, though I don't question the power of faith to help guide our actions and ease our burdens.  I try to resolve the inconsistencies of messages between the Old and New Testaments by focusing on the New.  But I am uneasy with the direction my Church is going, and it shows in the fact that often I am indifferent to what is considered my Church's most important obligation - attending Mass.  I usually don't find much to inspire me in the proclaimings of a priest on the pulpit, though I can be pleasantly surprised.  I'm not a person who prays regularly, and I am skeptical of the visions and apparitions - I don't disbelieve those who argue that such things happen to people, but I am not sure they are products of divine intervention.  Perhaps it's my academic training in the sciences, or perhaps it's a deep questioning.  Or perhaps, I just don't like being told that I am wrong for exhibiting that most human of characteristics - exploring my relationship to the world and the universe and not just relying on what I'm told.

If you want to know more about Conyers

City of Conyers
Georgia Encyclopedia: Conyers
Visit Conyers
Wikipedia: Conyers

Next up:  Monastery of the Holy Spirit, near Conyers, Georgia


Blue Highways: Athens, Georgia

Unfolding the Map

Click on Thumbnail for MapWilliam Least Heat-Moon (LHM) pulls into Athens, Georgia to simply walk off his Swamp Guinea meal and sparks my reminiscences on my youthful music tastes, as well as an aside about moonflowers and romance.  To place it all in geographical context, click on the map thumbnail at right.  Leave a comment if you'd like to suggest music that I might want to hear.  As I say below, I'm open to anything.

Book Quote

"The frogs, high and low, shrilled and bellowed from the trees and ponds.  It was cool going into Athens, a city suffering from a nasty case of the sprawls.  On the University of Georgia campus, I tried to walk down Swamp Guinea's supper.  Everywhere, couples entwined like moonflower vines, each waiting for the blossom that opens only twice."

Blue Highways: Part 2, Chapter 16


An Athens, Georgia street scene

Athens, Georgia

If you ask me what I know about Athens, Georgia, I'd tell you the bands REM and the B-52s.  Really.  I didn't even know that the University of Georgia was located there.  So it's my turn to learn more about Athens.

Of course, the B-52s and REM aren't just any bands, and Athens evidently is known as "The Liverpool of the South."  But back in the early 80s, I watched an episode of Saturday Night Live and tried to make sense of what I was seeing on the television screen.  There was a band, with two women with huge hairdos making ululating sounds, and a guy yelling something about a lobster.  I thought they were the strangest thing I had ever seen, and frankly, I didn't like them.  It took me years to develop an ear for them - I saw them in concert in the early 90s and again a couple of years ago and I really enjoyed them both times. 

I felt the same way about Athens' other major contribution to music, REM.  I liked the fast tempo and catchy lyrics of It's the End of the World as We Know It, but I wasn't taken by much of the rest of their music.  Even today, I like some things by REM but am not convinced of their overall greatness.  So, by extension, it's taken me a while to appreciate Athens as remotely contributing something to my life.

My sister credits me with influencing her music tastes when she appropriated my record collection when I went to college, but I was never really sophisticated in music.  While punk bands and new wave were beginning in the late 70s and early 80s, the radio station in my little Northern California town was firmly locked in the early 70s when it played music for "the kids", and the "newer" stuff that my peers listened to was definitely of the heavy metal variety.  The most daring music played on the radio or listened to by my peers was probably Frank Zappa.  I didn't get introduced to some of the newer music coming out until I went to college and started listening to Bay Area radio stations.  My approach to music has always been like my approach to wine - I know what I like regardless of whether it is considered a desired vintage or cheap.  This has stood me in good stead, and has led me to lots of great music and an openness to pretty much everything.  When I lived in Texas, this openness led me to a lot of great singer-songwriters and when I lived in New Orleans, the whole New Orleans jazz and brass band scene.  I tend to eschew most modern pop, and look for music that is interesting and not cookie-cutter.

In the end, I came back to the B-52s, even though they eventually became pop.  My wife had a couple of their early albums, and I began to appreciate just how radical they were back in the day when I was initially dismissing them as weird.  Here are the B-52s on Saturday Night Live in 1980 - the first time I ever learned of them.  They were just becoming a national act right about the time that LHM stops in Athens.  Could it be that he might have caught some of their music, drifting with a breeze as he walked at the University of Georgia?


Switching gears a second, LHM gets a little romantic and throws a little sexual imagery in the passage above, where he equates the couples on the grass at the University of Georgia with moonflowers.  The moonflower, like it's name implies, only opens in the evening.  I remember moonflowers from when I lived in New Orleans, and they easily can be equated with romance.  When they bloom at night, they are very fragrant and along with the scent of night-blooming jasmine, they scented the air in the New Orleans neighborhood where I lived with sweetness.  It was easy, on a warm spring or hot summer night to let one's fancy run wild with imagination with those scents swirling around.

Moonflowers also figure in some voodoo that is related to romance, which again reminds me of New Orleans.  John the Conqueroo root, used in some voodoo spells and potions to aid in gambling and flirting, comes from a plant related to the moonflower.

I hope, for the sake of those sprawling couples at the University of Georgia, that blossoms opened more than twice.  But I'm sure that at a university as big as Georgia in the early 80s there were plenty of blossoms to be plucked in the moonlight.  As the B-52s sang in their Song for a Future Generation: "Let's meet, and have a baby now!"

If you want to know more about Athens

Athens Banner-Herald's Online Athens (newspaper)
Athens-Clarke County Guide
Athens World (blog)
Blogs at Online Athens
Downtown Athens
Flagpole (alternative newspaper/magazine)
The Red and Black (independent student newspaper)
University of Georgia
Visit Athens, Georgia
Wikipedia: Athens

Next up: Conyers, Georgia