if i could live in a tv show

…it would be Andy of Mayberry.


Well, it would allow me to saunter into Floyd’s Barber Shop on a quiet Thursday afternoon, late September, when “rural” is a soft pageant of wind through the tops of tall pines rather than another word for—and this always gets in Aunt Bee’s bonnet—“hick.”

“What say, Floyd.”

“Howdy, do come in. Say, you’re that fella new to town…something about a ‘People of Mayberry’ book?”

“Not exactly. It’s ‘People of Barrie’; a project where they take the social temperature of local citizens and gather profiles that collectively tell us who we are.”

“Well, well. ‘Social temperature’…somebody sick?”

“No, Floyd.”

“Hmmm…you say it tells all the Barrie folks who they are…”

“More or less.”

“Well here in Mayberry, we know who we are. I’m Floyd. Andy’s Andy, and he’s the sheriff. Barney knows he’s Andy’s deputy. Aunt Bee knows she’s Andy’s aunt, Opie knows he’s—”

“No, Floyd. Uh, hey, it’s what, 1962?”

“Sure as Teddy Roosevelt riding up San Juan Hill, it is.”

“I have an idea; whenever you can, for however long this show runs, see if you can work in this quote from the Dalai Lama; ‘My religion is very simple: my religion is kindness.’”

“Very nice, although I’m not sure it would go over with Sheldon Leonard. He’s the big boss ‘round here…”

“Hey—Big Bang Theory…cool!”

“What’s that about a theory, and some sort of ruckus?”

“Uh, nothing Floyd. Just see if you can work it in. Ya never know. You could be making a big difference. Could be a world-changer.”

“Sounds exciting! Kind of like back in ’53—or was it ’52?—the state fair up in Raleigh. They had one of those llamas in the petting zoo. Shipped up all the way from Amarillo, Texas.”

“Gotta go, Floyd. Remember: ‘My religion is very simple: my religion is kindness.’ Work it in.”

“I will. Nice meeting you. Say hello to everyone in Barrie for me!”

“Sure thing, Floyd. Sure thing.”

– Bruce, freelance writer and bass player whose heroes include James Jamerson, William Safire, Bobby Orr, and whoever it was that came up with the exact recipe for Waterloo Dark