I grew up in a military family (well, Coast
Guard anyway) that moved from base to base about every two-and-a-half
years. I went to four different elementary schools, one junior
high school and one middle school and two different high schools.
Im still unclear on why some places call them middle schools
and others call them junior high schools, but it seems there
are more middle schools in the South and more junior highs in
Because of all that moving around, I became fairly adept at
adapting to new schools and new social situations. That adaptability
has served me well as I am now fairly comfortable when it comes
to meeting new people and dealing with unusual situations. (It
has not, however, molded me into one of those people who can
remember other peoples names very well; I absolutely stink
In a stroke of misfortune,
Jeff Eason will be taking a job in Blowing Rock a week
after Sonnys Grill has closed its doors for the
last time. Where will he find delicious ham biscuits?
I will put that adaptability to work this week when I leave
the friendly confines of the Mountain Times offices and start
my new job as editor of The Blowing Rocket. Consequently, I
am moving the Sweet Tea with Lemon column with me.
For the past five years Ive had a blast writing Sweet
Tea with Lemon at The Mountain Times. The column has afforded
me a chance to reminisce about experiences Ive had in
the past, inject a little humor into my newspaper writing, and
occasionally spout off about subjects that are near and dear
to my heart.
The column has also given me a pipeline to our readers that
I didnt have before. Readers have written letters and
emails, left phone messages, and occasionally stopped me in
the cereal aisle of the grocery store to tell me what they thought
of one of my columns. Most of the feedback has been positive,
but even the most vehement disagree-ers have been civil while
telling me in no uncertain terms what an idiot I am. I thank
At this crossroads in my career, I plan on giving Sweet
Tea with Lemon a bit of a break while I get my bearings
at The Blowing Rocket. Life without a weekly column and weekly
movie review to write will take a little getting used to, but
Im excited about the challenges that lie ahead.
So as I hand the entertainment editor baton to Frank Ruggiero
at The Mountain Times, I encourage him to write a column such
as Sweet Tea. All newspapers need a bit of personal
or opinionated writing, to give them a bit of character in addition
to the pieces about hard news and coming events.
In the meantime, I look forward to meeting the readers of The
Blowing Rocket and finding out what their interests are. I hope
some of my Mountain Times readers will follow me those eight
miles south down Hwy 321 and pick up a Rocket occasionally.
Until then, thanks for reading.