Chronicles of Nowhereland

The Life and Times of a Witty Southern Belle in Small Town, USA.

Go the Longway

*The feature image for this story is an actual photo of a stray found in this condition and rescued. Photo courtesy of Phil and Jacqueline Baker.

Don’t go that way. Don’t go the back way passed the bridges. Don’t turn right and take the shortcut. Go the long way instead. If you take the backroad, you’ll see the ole momma dog and her pups. Abandoned. Left for dead. Was she deserted before or after her pups came to be? Were they why? No matter the reason, she, starved for both food and love, takes care of them. She teaches them to hide when cars pass. She decides that human contact, when feared and avoided, means survival. Therefore, she teaches her pups so. They will remember this long after she is gone. I drive to work and wonder, “Will they make it through the day?,” Instead I turn I blind eye, and I never go the back way.

Dedicated to the strays that never got rescued. 


9 Famous Writers Born in Mississippi

1.) Tennessee Williams – One of the most famous playwrights in the nation was born in Columbus, Mississippi. An inductee of the American Theater Hall of Fame, many of his works were made into films, such as Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and A Streetcar Named Desire. Williams died in 1983, from choking on a cap to a bottle of eyedrops. Some way to go for a famous playwright.

2.) Willie Morris – Willie Morris was born in Jackson, Mississippi, and grew up in Yazoo City, Mississippi, which is located in the Mississippi delta. He became a Rhodes scholar, and much of his work focuses on political and racial issues. Notable works include Good Old Boy and My Dog Skip.

3.) Jill Conner Browne –  Born in Tupelo, Mississippi, Browne focuses on women’s empowerment and a sisterhood she deemed, “Sweet Potato Queens.” The Sweet Potato Queens have local chapters throughout the state, which hold fundraisers for children’s hospitals and numerous charities.

4.) Barry Hannah – Born in Meridian, Mississippi, Barry Hannah is an award winning author, who centers his works around different types of humors. His notable works include Hey, Jack!, Boomerang and Never Die. Hannah died of a heart attack in 2010 at his Oxford, Mississippi home.

5.) Shelby Foote – Born in Greenville, Mississippi, Foote’s works include Shiloh: A Novel and September, September. He focused primarily on the American Civil War. He did all of his work by pen, as he hated the typewriter. He died of a heart attack in 2005.

6.) Eudora Welty – Eudora Welty is a highly esteemed novelist born in Jackson, Mississippi. In 1973, she won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for The Optimist’s Daughter. She is one of the most influential African American women in literature. Welty died in 2001 from natural causes.

7.) William Faulkner – Faulkner, the most read and most well known Mississippi writers, was born in the town of New Albany, Mississippi. Based in the fictional county of Yoknapatawpha, some of his award winning works include As I Lay Dying and Absalom, Absalom!. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1949. Faulkner died of a heart attack in 1962 in a Byhalia, Mississippi nursing home.

8.) Richard Wright – Richard Wright is one of the most talented and famous writers from Mississippi. Born in Roxie, Mississippi, Wright’s works include Black Boy and Native Son. He focuses on the hardships faced by African Americans. As a result, he was able to relay to the nation the plight that he and other African Americans faced on a daily basis. Wright died of a heart attack on November 28, 1960.

9.) Natasha Trethewey – Born in Gulfport, Mississippi, Natasha Trethewey is highly esteemed, award winning poet. She was awarded the Pulitzer Prize
for Poetry in 2007, Poet Laureate of Mississippi in 2012, and United States Poet Laureate in 2012. Trethewey’s notable works include Domestic Work and Native Guard. 

Courtroom brought to tears during Melandus Penson sentencing

HOLLY SPRINGS, Miss. — Melandus Penson, the man charged in a deadly crash that killed two Briarcrest students in 2015, has pleaded guilty and been sentenced to 60 years in prison. There was not dry eye in the courtroom today as friends and family of Maddie Kruse and Rachel Lynch gave statements remembering the teens.…

Mississippi monitoring potential measles cases

JACKSON, Miss. — The Mississippi State Department of Health has reported four residents who were exposed to measles in Shelby County but are not immunized against the virus. The department is monitoring those individuals for symptoms. The four people who were exposed are quarantined at their homes and being supervised by doctors. Six cases of…

Melandus Penson’s DUI Case changes DUI Laws in Mississippi

MARSHALL COUNTY, Miss. – Melandus Penson is headed to prison after pleading guilty in the DUI accident that killed 17-year-olds Mattie Kruse and Rachel Lynch. Lynch’s father, Matthew Lynch,  made an emotional plea at the sentencing about the multiple DUI offender. “There is no excuse the state can offer as to why this person was…

Men read horrible comments to female sports reporters in powerful viral video

CHICAGO — Two female Chicago sports reporters are confronting the harassment they receive on a daily basis in a video that’s gone viral. Some WGN-TV anchors and reporters know first-hand just how mean people can be — in fact, the station has even reported on it before. Created by the podcast group Just Not Sports, the video features…

8 Types of Guys a Woman Will Meet in Mississippi 

*Note: This is a just for fun, meant to be funny post. Foul language is throughout. If easily offended, please proceed elsewhere. 

1.) The Redneck

The redneck is a breed of his own. He has an obsession with his piece of shit truck, which sits on tires that are ten sizes too big and jacked up to Jesus. This truck usually dawns the confederate flag and some sort of hunting reference about killing anything that walks. He was furious over the court’s recent desk ion to change the state flag, and blames it all on the nigger loving liberals. He thinks his woman should cook, clean and bear his children, preferably a son, and otherwise keep her damn mouth shut. Hurry ladies before they’re all gone!

2.) The Wannabe

The wannabe is most commonly referred to, by all races, as the wigger. By definition, a wigger is a white boy who thinks he is black. He wears anything endorsed by P. Daddy and the fiber glass on his shitty Mazda shakes to the beats of Yo Gotti. Careful ladies, you just might get hypnotized by his jailhouse tattoos. Does not play well with the redneck.

3.) The Baseball Player

Flat bill hats and jersey shirts are a must for this ball playing beaux. He may play other sports, but baseball is his obsession. His life goal is to get a scholarship, play college ball, major in physical education, and spend the rest of his life as a little league coach. So far so good, huh ladies. Well, just wait until baseball season. You will have to take a backseat on the bleachers.

4.) The Lover

The loved cries a lot and is very sensitive. He falls in love quite easily, but will make you feel exceptionally special. That is until you realize he’s basically fell in love with every girl that has ever given him the least bit of attention. He will become clingy and too available, and you will have to dump his whiny ass. After which he will cry, curse you, and accuse you of ruining his life. But don’t you worry about him. He will be loved up with another chick in no time.

5.) The Gym Freak/Muscle Maniac

Bulging veins and a Hulk Hogan tan are this rock solid Romeo’s trademark. One word, protein. Expect to be helping with a lot of pre-planned meals with this one. Not to mention the jacked up mood swings. But hey, at least you two can go get spray tans together.

6.) The Frat Boy

Daddy’s money sure does buy a lot of friends and much more for this little prick. He parties like hell the first year at university, screws up royally, and daddy makes him go to community college for a year to straighten him out. He is a spoiled self righteous little punk and will not hide it the least bit. In his eyes he is a golden god. Although he hates the redneck, he is just a redneck in a sear sucker suit with daddy’s money.

7.) The Momma’s Boy

Ugh, the dreaded Momma’s boy. Loving your mother is one thing, but being a sissy ass Momma’s boy is another. He is a cuter version of the lover, but on the tit. This poor boy has been coddled and coochie cooed until his momma has turned him into a first class sissy. Good luck popping Momma’s titty out of his mouth long enough to get to first base.

8.) The Southern Gentleman

Ahhh always save the best for last. The southern gentleman is a true gem. He is real husband material. He has wonderful manners and will always refer to you as “ma’am.” You will fall in love with his southern charm immediately. Just make sure that he returns the favor.

Dying in Dixie

When thinking about where we live, one doesn’t usually associate that with death. This is something that, at one time, I never considered either. However, experiences from the past couple of years made me think about the rural area in which I live, death and the connection between the two.
I live in Marshall County, Mississippi, which is in the Northern part of the state. Our neighboring counties, such as Lafayette and Desoto, are thriving with hospitals and highly rated Doctor’s offices. But, this is a good forty-five minute drive for me. We only have one hospital, which has more pending lawsuits than Bill Cosby. We also have a few Doctor’s offices and clinics, that are lacking to say the least. I’ll get to those later, but first, I want to share with you my personal experiences that made me start to question the medical incompetence of my county.

When I was 22 years old, I had a horrible car accident, that left me with a dissected carotid artery. As a result, a carotid stent had to be placed. Luckily, the accident did not happen in Marshall County, and I was able to be taken to the MED in Memphis, Tennessee. The MED was amazing, and because of the prompt care by the wonderful Doctors there, I am able to write this today. My point in telling you this, is what if something goes wrong with my stent? Where am I to be taken in order to save my life? The MED is a good hour and a half away from me. I would be long gone by then. In addition, I doubt the one hospital in Marshall County even has a cardiologist on there three stories of malpractice. This has been a concern of mine since my stent was placed, but it is a concern that I have to live with.

One day not long ago, when I was working for an attorney’s office, I cute my finger with a box cutter while opening a new shipment of office supplies. It was obvious that I needed stitches, so I thought, “What the hell,” and decided to give our hospital a shot. I came to check in with my finger all wrapped up and bloody. There were two men in the waiting room with me that looked like they were homeless and just there for the free coffee and temporary shelter, which they probably were. In the medical world, if you need stitches, you have to get them within 6 hours of your injury. After four hours of waiting, I left. I had inquired with the staff several times, but I was just told to sit and wait. I could understand if they were extremely busy, but it was just me and the homeless men in the waiting room and virtually no one in the back. I know this because when I went to the back to ask about my waiting, I saw no patients, just people in scrubs horsing around. I felt as though I had sought medical attention in a daycare with homeless helpers.

My most important and upsetting experience includes my sweet Mother. My Mother has a severe latex allergy, which is referred to as latex anaphylaxis. This is not just a matter of don’t use latex gloves. Latex is in a multitude of common items such as rubber bands, shoe souls, fabric softener sheets and the list goes on. Her allergy is so severe, exposure for her can be deadly. When she begins to have an attack, all of her systems immediately begin to shut down. She has Epi pens, but still requires immediate medical attention. When this happens, I rush to her home (she lives right next door) and rush her to the hospital in the next county. But, as I said, it is about forty-five minutes away. When I finally arrive at the hospital, she is near death and usually unconscious.

One night she had an attack at a friend’s house nearby, so I rushed over right away. Her friend had already called 911 and told the dispatcher she was having an anaphylactic attack due to a severe latex allergy and to send an ambulance right away. Ambulances around here are with separate Medstat stations. They respond according to location and either take the patient to the nearest hospital or the hospital specified by the patient or the patient’s family. Mother was getting worse even after two Epi pens, and I just knew I was about to watch my Mother die there in the floor. The ambulance finally arrived and the two men (if that’s what you’d call them) carelessly got out and started to the house as if they were headed to lunch. I said, “Please hurry! My Mother is dying!” They finally made it inside the house, and they were covered in latex! The dispatcher had told them it was a shortness of breath call. We them had to waste more time and explain latex anaphylaxis to them. When asking them to at least remove their latex gloves, they took it personal, and the driver stomped off like an angry toddler. So, my Mother’s life was in the hands of these clowns. I asked them if they were going to help her or just keep staring at her (which they were doing because they didn’t know what to do) to which they threatened me with calling the sheriff’s department. An hour after they arrived, we finally began the forty-five minute drive to the hospital. We finally arrived and thankfully she survived, but it was a horrible experience. The next day I called the Medstat station to see what went wrong beginning with dispatch and to let them know the careless attitudes of their EMTs, but to no avail. The ignorant manager did not give a damn either and addressed none of my concerns.

This is my biggest fear about living in such a rural area with no immediate or efficient medical access. In future attacks, I will just have to administer my Mother’s Epi pens and pray I can make it to a decent ER in time.

The few Doctor’s offices that we have are no better. None of them accept new patients, and they all seem to cater to Medicaid recipients, being mostly pregnant teenagers. Because after all, we are the number one state for teen pregnancy. Another number one that we hold, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, is number of annual deaths. Mississippi has more deaths per year than any other state in the country. I can’t help but relate this to the lack of adequate healthcare. If we had proper medical attention and easier access to decent hospitals, would that number decline?

I go back to my wreck that I mentioned in the beginning of this article. Had I wrecked anywhere close to home, I truly believe that I would be a head count in that annual death rate. I just want people to know the some of the sacrifices that are sometimes attributed to small town living. I love living in the country. It has been my home my entire life, and I am proud to say that, but I am not proud enough to die over it.

Let it Be: If it’s Broke, Don’t Fix It

People always seem to be trying to “fix” things. Although I can understand fixing practical things like a car, a sink, or even a pet, but people want to fix their marriage, fix their job, or fix themselves. Fix, fix, fix. Society seems to have this unconscious obsession with things being fixed, that most of the time, don’t need fixin’. Is having everything in life perfectly “fixed” the answer to all of our problems? Or do we need some things to be broken in our lives to maintain a sense of normalcy?

When I first met him, my husband was a shoe cobbler. For those of you who do not know, a shoe cobbler is basically a shoe repairman. I had never heard of such until I met him. If any of my shoes ever broke, I would just toss them and buy a new pair. At the particular shop at which he worked, the prices for fixing the shoes were quite expensive. I would always wonder why the people coming in didn’t just do like me and buy more shoes instead of paying more than the shoes were worth getting them repaired. We are talking about everyday, run of the mill shoes here. Not Louboutins or Manolos, which I would understand doing a little repair on.

One day my husband even pointed to the shoes I was wearing and said, “You know, I could fix those for you?” to which I replied, “No, thanks. I need some things that are broken in my life.” So, what is the obsession with fixing everything? One doesn’t achieve character by being “fixed” up and having it all together. After all, I’ve always considered the most broken people to have the most honest hearts. Does it all have to be fixed in order to achieve happiness? I think not.

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