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where i’m from

i’m from floral city, florida, in a small county called citrus county. it’s in northwest central florida, on the gulf coast. i left when i was 17 and, other than visits to my mom when she still lived there, have pretty much never looked back. i did go back twice for high school reunions, which were fun, but those were just one-night visits.

there must be something in the water, though. i’m glad i’m out of there.

even living in new york city, i seem to see lots of negative news about various locations in citrus county. it may be that i just notice them more.

but i don’t think so. the number of odd news items you see seems out of proportion to the small size of the county and its population.

take this latest example, for example.

found this while browsing on the smoking gun website. i’ll summarize it for you, in case you don’t want to bother going to the link yourself.

27-year-old mother throws lewd birthday party for 10-year-old daughter and her friends. the festive fun included stripping, nude jumping jacks, and oral sex lessons using a bottle, all during a game of “truth or dare”. mother arrested and faces up to 15 years in prison.

i wish i could say this was the first time weird news about has popped up. we also have this lovely story about a child killer, which made national news a few months back.

and of course there was my previous blog entry about the inverness cooter festival, which, while not in the league of the above horrible items, is certainly cause to pause.

the first two items even happened in the same town–hernando, florida–which is very rural and very poor and in the middle between the two wealthier towns, inverness and crystal river.

there are many nice things one can say about the area. it has lovely live oak trees with hanging spanish moss, lots of beautiful lakes and rivers, inexpensive (well, relative to the rest of florida, anyway) living standards, and, for the most part i’m sure, perfectly lovely people. i had my share of normal childhood trauma, but i survived long enough and intact enough to get out when i could.

still.

there must be something in all that water. i’m glad i’m out of there.

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