I am still slowly working my way through the essays in Appalachian Reckoning. A helluva lot of people struggling and striving and suffering who are too inconvenient to admit exist when you have a narrative of your own to peddle. Nevertheless we persist in existing, an inconvenient truth. A throwaway line in an essay full of them reminded me, in that bewildering, wonderful way the human brain connects random bits, of a line from a buddy of mine from middle school. Riffing on Robin Leach and Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous (then still on the air), he would, repeatedly, refer to the “lifestyles of the poor and dainty.” It was a funny line, but not one that had any real reason to be memorable. Again, the human brain is funny like that. I wondered what my old friend was up to these days. So I did what we do these days.
I looked him up on Facebook. I spent a few minutes browsing a very normal small town Facebook page before noticing that it was a memorialized account.