And for goodness sake keep your eyes peeled for his novel My Darkest Prayer in the near future.
by S.A. Cosby
There are certain things that poor rural people have in common regardless of age sex or race. We like cookouts. We adore sweet tea. We love to go to the Taste-Freeze or it's nearest geographical equivalent. We like to drink moonshine on a porch as the sun goes down or around a bonfire. We love fast cars with supercharged engines and souped up four barrel carburetors. And we absolutely adore movies that combine the last two activities. Old, young, black, white if you grew up in the rural South you are drawn to movies about good ol'boys in American muscle cars sticking it to the man or the man's associates.
Sound familiar yet?
We are poor.
We are proud.
We are put upon by outside forces.
We won't be denied our freedom.
Those are themes that a multitude of movies have tackled but those movies didn't resonate with me. I had never been a boxer working on the docks like Marlon Brando in On the Waterfront. I didn't know anyone who had been in the Dust Bowl like Tom Joad. But Bobby Lee and Grady? I lived next door to them. I went to school with their kids. They like their grits the same way I liked mine.
I've field dressed a deer on a crisp Autumn morning. I've sucked honeysuckle in a field in June. I've shucked oysters with the scent of the sea still ripe in the air. I captured lightning bugs on a dark July night. I've ridden in the back of a pick-up to a football game. These and hundreds of other experiences are unique to the land below the Mason-Dixon. They are a form of shared connectivity that someone who grew up with sidewalks just can't access.
Times have changed since I sat on my grandfather's living room floor and watched a grainy B movie that looked like it was filmed in my back yard. Kids don't seem to have the same love for muscle cars and unregulated liquor that puts hair on you chest. They would rather race cars through the streets of Liberty City.
The love of Freedom, like the fear of Poverty, is universal.