February 16, 2011

On the Ease of Merriment in Small Towns

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , at 8:05 am by Editorial Team

The key, I have no doubt, to the sustained level of activity lay in the fact that the great majority of persons who visited the places along Main Street and who did so with a desire for company in mind, did so alone. It is this characteristic that modern communities fail to achieve and that is so much missed in modern life. Those who have found a place where they can stop in as lone individuals and find association and camaraderie awaiting them are indeed as rare as they are fortunate. Most of us have to go with friends to a place in order to have someone to talk to when we get there. We must plan, we must make arrangements, we must try to establish a set time as well as a set place in order to regularize whatever third association we can claim. In small towns like River Park, before home entertainment and fast highways took or kept people elsewhere, the lone individual could find company and diversion virtually without effort. It was the casual and effortless satisfaction of the social instinct that allowed the River Parks of that time to keep boredom at bay.

– Ray Oldenburg, The Great Good Place

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