Two things. First, it’s time for my annual “I get too many emails” whine. This is partly because I’m not only terribly good looking for a goblin but also because I know how to do the Carlton dance and in fact often do. But I don’t do the Carlton when I’m learning to step Gangam style in honor of the folks from Hyundai.
Editor’s note: I think the JDA should also learn to dance Gangam style and do it at the next JDA meeting. They probably won’t.
I also get too many emails because I’m editor of the Bryan County News, legal organ of a county named after a South Carolinian. And because I’m an nth generation South Carolinian.
You see, people tend to email South Carolinians at random to see what’s up. Or give us millions of dollars in funds from a deposed Mideastern dictator after we send back our social security number and bank details so they’ll know we seriously want to help them do good in the world and make us all filthy rich in the process.
Anyhow, some of the emails I get I actually read. Many I don’t, or I’d spend most of my time reading emails. This one I did. It came from Wallet Hub, which ranked 200 U.S. cities by the quality of their St. Patrick’s Day celebration.
Like you, I figured Savannah would easily be Top 10, maybe even Top 5. You know, up there with the Bostons and New Yorks and Chicagos of the world. Where it belongs.
Nope. Savannah weighed in at No. 38.
That’s out of 200, so that’s not bad. But still, No. 38? That puts Savannah behind cities like Buffalo, N.Y. (9), Cedar Rapids, Iowa (14), Dayton, Ohio (19), Omaha, Neb. (23) and Yonkers, N.Y. (31). Yonkers?
What’s a Yonkers? Does it have hashtags,like Richmond Hill: “#BonkersinYonkers.”
It’s worth noting a lot of famous people got their start in Yonkers. The Otis dude who invented elevators, for example. He was a Yonkersonian, or Yonkerite. Or Yonk.
Yonkers? Try saying that three times with a straight face, like Goober saying “Judy Judy Judy” when doing his Cary Grant impersonation. Yawnkers? Yunkers? Yohhhhnkers?
YonKERS? Ah well, here’s a link. https://wallethub.com/edu/best-worst-cities- for-st-patricks-day-celebrations/19603 As for why Savannah’s celebration ranks so far down the list, I have a theory.
That theory is Savannah got too big for its britches. Or just too big in general. The whole Coastal Empire has gotten enormous.
For those of you new to the area, it’s not just a myth that once upon a time you could drive around and do things and not get run over by people trying to get there before you do. That’s really what it was like.
Now it can take half an hour to get out of your driveway, and you’re lucky if you don’t get rear-ended pulling into your driveway.
And bless your heart if you have to take a left to get out of your county.
I have to take a series of lefts to get out of mine – it’s not really mine, it’s the one I live in – and there are like 14 wrecks a day at each of them, thanks to the unrestricted building of subdivisions and warehouses and convenience stores and everything but traffic lights to try and sort this ridiculous mess out.
Alas, it’s getting so you can’t throw a rock anywhere from Rincon to Richmond Hill without hitting a semi, a warehouse, a vinyl house, a convenience store or somebody in an Ohio State Buckeyes t-shirt. And it’s only going to get better.
By 2030 there will be 6.2 million people in the greater Richmond Hill-Rincon-Pooler metro area. All of them will have five cars, two dogs, their own craft brewery and most will know how to say Yonkers and mean it. And it will take you an hour to go a mile in your electric car, which will be replaced by flying Jetson mobiles as soon as you pay it off. And the powers that be will say this is a good thing. Second, this:.
One of the best things about doing this job for so long is that it’s enabled me to meet a great many fine people. One of the worst things about it is when they pass away.
That happened recently. Bonnie Proctor died. She’d been sick a while and I had no idea until her obituary showed up in my email inbox. That email, I read. And felt sadness.
I can’t remember the first time I met Bonnie, who was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Bob. I just know that every time I saw Bonnie she was the same. Gracious, funny and kind to me, even when she didn’t have reason to be.
And, for a long time she was involved in everything that had anything to do with making her community better. She did it without fuss, without bother and without expectation she’d get credit for it. That’s becoming rare. But then, Bonnie was one of a kind She’ll be missed.