Wood, Metal, Mud and Fuzzy Slippers: by TIM PRESTON


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It was a busy weekend and the mud is still on my shoes, where it will remain to remind me, “You just never know.”Allow me to share a story or two?

I was bound for Olive Hill one Saturday morning a few weeks ago, and received a note from a friend about a community firewood chopping event by residents of Rattlesnake Ridge at a nearby lumber yard.

I almost convinced my self I did not have time to stop by, but thought “That story might go a long way in that community.” And, it wasn’t far off my morning’s route anyway. When I got there, I found a far better story than expected. Neighbors had gathered with their saws and splitters to cut firewood for two of their families, free of any cost.

That firewood was intended to keep Rattlesnake Ridge neighbors alive through the cold months ahead, but actually managed to warm hearts around the world.

Despite my expectation that a few local folks would enjoy the story and photos, it has since been shared around the world and continues to find new readers. I’m told it even inspired a few Sunday sermons encouraging neighbors everywhere to do what they can for the people around them.

And, about the mud on my shoes.

The photo above was the first image I snapped at the scene and the amount of mud involved is apparent. Unlike the hard-working sawyers of Rattlesnake Ridge, however, I was wearing a pair of brown Pro Keds instead of work boots, and the photo does not depict how slick that mud was.

Determined to “get in there” and get better photos, each step was a gamble and I nearly did “the splits” a few times before gaining traction. I was sure the entire thing was going to end with me face down in the slime, and I actually had a strategy to attempt to toss my camera out to more solid ground if I did go down.

Somehow, I managed to get out of there with only a distinct layer of mud clinging perfectly to the outside of my shoes. I got most of it off before getting back in the car, but the residual dirt and stuff has left a permanent stain on those shoes and I have no plans to try and erase that.

In case you missed it, you can read that story here.

Metal Was Heavy

A few weeks have also passed since the first Carter County Metal show in Grayson, which was a welcome event for those who like hard, loud and aggressive music.

Attended by a couple of hundred fans, the concert began with incredibly high-energy performances by Lexington-based band Trash Pageant, as well as Left To The Wolves, who had recently returned from a European tour with the band Rings of Saturn. The band’s vocalist is reported to have said the energy and size of the crowd in Grayson rivaled many of the venues they played on that circuit.

The heroes of the show, in my heart and mind, were members of the two bands from this area – Not One Is Upright and What Drives The Weak. Musicians from both crews offered their time, resources, contacts, opinions and experiences to organize the show, in addition to bringing powerful performances to the Grayson Gallery & Art Center stage. Jon Marshall, Gerald Dyson and Frank Shavers all deserve extra credit for their efforts to make the show a success.

The show brought metal music fans from five states to Carter County, and many of them have since sent messages of thanks, often including near disbelief the show was provided free of charge (donations were accepted), and with free pizza and other refreshments for the audience.

Yes. We are already planning Carter County Metal II for next spring.

If you missed the story and brutally massive photo gallery, go to: https://localimpact.dev/cartercountypost/2019/11/carter-county-metal-hardcore-fans-set.html

Pink and Fuzzy

Another surprisingly popular story in recent weeks introduced Attorney Laura Jane Phelps as the new associate at Wilhoit Law Office, and the sixth generation of her family to practice law in Carter County.

I can easily testify my interview with Phelps was an absolute pleasure, with lots of laughs along the way which did not make the final cut of the story. And, when it was time to snap a photo to go with the piece, Phelps did not hesitate to show off the fuzzy, pink unicorn slippers she wears in the office when high heels are not required.


I watched the Carter County Post stats in the hours after that piece was posted, and was amazed at the amount of online attention. It has since become one of our Top-10 stories of all time. 

I credit the fuzzy slippers.

If you missed it, check it out here!


Story and Photos by TIM PRESTON

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