Small Town Survival Guide: “Expectations”

He's a lumberjack and he's okay!

Expectations are different in small towns.

In small town northwestern Ontario? Flannel is completely appropriate for all occasions. Weddings included. Funerals too – but the good flannel. Expectations, people.

These different expectations carry over into the intersection of community newspapers and vegetable gardening.

In “non-small-town-land,” upon discovering an oddly shaped vegetable growing in your garden, you would probably think “Wow, what an oddly shaped veggie.” Perhaps you would snap a photo for Facebook. Then you’d eat the vegetable.

In small towns, upon discovering an oddly shaped vegetable growing in your garden it is expected—nay I believe you are bound by municipal law—to pluck said vegetable from the earth and bring it to your local newspaper so that a photo of this peculiarity can be taken and published in all its weird twisted glory for the whole community to see.

Or at least I think that’s the expectation, since we see quite a few people drop by our newsroom with oddly shaped vegetables, eager for newspaper fame. Although they never want to actually be in the photo with the vegetable.

I’ve decided that those who oversee various community newspaper awards should create a new category:

“Best photo of an oddly shaped vegetable.”

I’m extremely surprised they haven’t already. Odd-shaped-veggie photography is on par with sports reporting, right?

I especially suggest this because our newsroom has the award in the bag.

Behold, the carrot shaped like a human hand!

Woman screaming as a carrot that looks like a hand rests on her shoulder

Wherein my co-worker Leanne re-enacts horror movie scenes.

If that isn’t Pulitzer Prize winning material, I don’t know what is.

This could be just one of many new awards. Up next we could establish an award for the best cheque passing photo! Most awkward grin and grip photo! Best photo which captures the largest number of children each holding onto a non-perishable food item for donation!

The possibilities are endless.

And yes, we did run the carrot-hand picture in the paper. Because we could.

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4 Responses to Small Town Survival Guide: “Expectations”

  1. lpunkari says:

    (Reads comment about sports reporting)

    This might not be the best time to tell you, but I am on my way to Prince Albert, Saskatchewan shortly to take over their sports reporting job, leaving the spot here open for you.


  2. Duane Hicks says:

    I love that photo!

  3. Also! In many small towns, you need to enter said oddly shaped vegetable in the fair – I know the Orono Fair has a category for them.

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