I refuse to give up on this blog.
Driving to Rose Bud today, I discovered this relic:
I note that a fairly recent-looking Arkansas Democrat-Gazette machine is still guarding the door, so this grocer hasn't been closed for too long, I suppose. Judging by its looks, it's probably been around since the 1930s, maybe 40s, and was one of those hardwood floored Third Places where old men gathered around a hanging light bulb and told stories.
It's interesting to me that many old groceries (such as this one, from my friend Barbara's blog) had those old signs with very similar hand-painted text.
I bet that once this place was an oasis of food and culture, the only stop between Rose Bud and Joy or Center Hill, and when you're on unpaved roads up in the hills, that's a long way. It's paved now, of course, but not much more than a half-century removed. I bet this was a great place to gather. It would have had that inviting closeness and clutter that spoke of individuals and care, rather than cold vast-market calculation and consumer psychology. No rolling smileys or self-check outs here, just the people you know.
Ahh, I'm probably just romanticizing it.