Monday, December 31, 2012

'Possum Drop: More to the Story

Generally by this time of the evening I'm ready to dish out a play-by-play of our day. And, in spite of my doomy gloomy predictions, today was remarkably good. Unfortunately, I will not have amazing stories to tell about the 2012 'Possum Drop because tonight I am not in attendance. My plan is to have The Preacher catch you up on all the goings on at some point tomorrow. Instead, I am here to offer you a bit of insight into the story of The 'Possum Drop - as I understand it.

Let me preface by saying that I absolutely adore Tallapoosa, GA. There are very few locales enticing enough in which to consider working, raising my family, and serving a church - all at the same time. Here, in our little  metropolis we have it all. There are not many communities where you can find fairly equal dosing of Historical Society and Garden Clubs balanced by a strong Chamber of Commerce and Better Hometown crew. We have generous arts patrons as well as the gang that prefers whatever's on tap at Johnny's Bar. Yes, we have a dichotomy of culture, but that is part of what makes Tallapoosa fun and quirky and interesting and a delight to serve.

Knowing this background will help you better understand that not every Tallapoosian is a fan of the notorious 'Possum Drop.

Gasp! Who doesn't love this, strange though it may be, claim to fame? There are those, and those I love dearly, who hold strongly to the belief that 'Possum Snout and Tallapoosa were historically two separate entities and these two entities never became one. They say 'Possum Snout was more on the outskirts of Tallapoosa and, similarly to other early settled communities, it slowly disappeared until there was nothing left. It seems, as they tell it, there's not much even there today - perhaps a still or two - to mark that there ever was such a place. (And we will certainly not even entertain the thought that said still might be active!) Thus the feeling has developed among a certain segment of our beloved populous that a celebration of the place called 'Possum Snout with a New Year's 'Possum Drop is not a celebration of Tallapoosa. And, they feel, it is rather a base and vile thing to attempt the association.

Then we have the other side of Tallapoosa, the "New Blood," if you will. (It would be appropriate to note at this point that not all of the "New Blood" is new nor does all the "Old Blood" qualify as old. They are merely being used as appropriate qualifiers since any other and better term is, at this time, lacking.) This side of the town fence is always looking for ways to promote Tallapoosa and enlighten the world about the joys rural living has to offer. They are the ones who, much to the disgust of the others, would willingly plaster opossums, both dead and alive, to anything that is marginally associated with our 33 degrees North by 85 degrees West. The New Blood likens themselves to the idea that all exposure is good exposure.

Truthfully, I think most of us just fall somewhere in between the two Tallapoosa extremes. We don't let our disagreements about whether dropping an opossum is tacky or good for business come between us. We love each other, we like to have fun, and if a big, stuffed 'possum named Spencer hanging upside down in a lighted sphere helps out local businesses a few times a year, then why not?



I would be remiss if I did not also mention there is a third, though not necessarily member of the community, group having something to say about our annual 'Possum Drop. There are those of the animal rights persuasion who suffer greatly on behalf of the opossums of the world; who are soundly disturbed that we are so insensitive and uncultured as to use and abuse a poor, innocent opossum in our reckless pursuit of New Year's fun. For y'all, let's get it straight right now: Our dear Spencer was more than willing to sacrifice the body his sweet 'possum spirit was no long in need of when the Lord took him on to Glory that warm spring morning in the late 90's on the side of Highway 120 miraculously near the home of the taxidermist extraordinaire, Mr. Bud Jones. The end. Thank you very much.

No comments:

Post a Comment