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A Day in the Life of the Duke Boys- 1/17/2009....

A Day in the Life of the Duke Boys- 1/17/2009....

It's rumored among some that Lee and I sit in a dark cave over a bubbling cauldron, casting spells and practicing the dark arts, but in reality, we are notorious for just plain 'ol jumping in Lee's truck and engaging in the long- lost Southern practice of "goin' sniffin". Today was just one of those days and since we happen to have a camera with us, we thought we would take you all along for the ride; It was interesting to say the least, so let go.....

  • Photo 1: This is the world- famous Dean's Barbecue. It opened in 1947 and it the oldest restaurant in Clayton County, Ga. It has been frequented by some of the world's most famous people including Audie Murphy, the most decorated veteran of World War II. It's also widely known that many of the scenes in the great 70's movie "Smokey and the Bandit" were shot here in Historic Jonesboro, home of Dean's and that several of the stars and crew of the movie ate here every day after shooting was completed. More about that later.
  • Photo 2: Here's the crew that runs Dean's and it's a true family affair: Roger Dean, Mike Ward, Sheila Roberts and Michelle Belcher. Dean's is a true gem- a place found only in the Deep South and is the only place I know of where if you ask for a "Mason/ Dixon", they'll give it to you without blinking an eye!
  • Photo 3: How in the world do you hush a talkative, opinionated, midget with control issues? Put a plate of barbeque in front of him- works every time.....
  • Photo 4: Speaking of "Smokey and the Bandit", in the movie, the Bandit and the Snowman went to what we all thought was Texarkana, TX for a load of Coors beer. In reality, that building was in downtown Jonesboro, immediately to the left of this brick building. Remember that the original had two tall, black tin doors. This area was Lee's stomping grounds when he was a boy (he was never short, even as a child) and his sister was actually in the original movie as an extra.
  • Photo 5: This is the train depot that Burt Reynolds and Jerry Reed passed on their way to getting that load of Coors in again, what we all thought was Texas. As a matter of fact, a good portion of this legendary film was shot here in Georgia and for many years after it came out, the only thing Southern children would ask for from Sandy Claus was a "Director's Cut" version of the film. The ultimate tribute to this film's influence on middle- aged, Southern housewives is the fact that my Aunt Linda made my Uncle Jim buy her a "Bandit Edition" Trans- Am. It was a subject of many a Mauldin Family Reunion conversation for years after and I sure do wish I knew where that car is now- I'd straight get my Burt Reynolds on.....
  • Photo 6: After stuffing ourselves with the hallowed swine, we decided to take our journey over to the dark side. Lee and I took deep breaths and headed over to visit our luthier, the infamous Dr. Donald Dunlavey, or "Double D" as we call him. You can bet that before arriving at his lair, we stopped at the Little Giant store and each got a diet Coke, a moonpie and a pack of cigarettes. We did this because when you go see the Double D, you might not make it out alive and if this was going to be our last day on Earth, we might as well have some supplies to tide us over until we crossed the river, if you know what I mean. It was Lee's idea to distract the 'ol Doc with a sandwich from Dean's and we made some small talk, picked up what we came for and miracle of miracles, made it out alive. Truth be told, Double D has more guitar knowledge in his little finger than we have in our entire bodies and provides us with a place to sit down, shut up and learn something. And, if we're good little Elks, he shows us his stash of Brazilian rosewood and that's like opening a drawer full of suckers for a couple of fat babies.
  • Photo 7. Now, after all this fun and excitement you would think we'd be ready to go on home and tackle those "Honey-do" lists that always seem to be waiting for us or watch the Shoney's Big Boy Bowl on ESPN, but instead, to put the icing on top of the proverbial 'Elk cake, we stopped to pick up this near- mint, one owner 1964 Firebird III and that is the reason we're still to this day like a couple of kids in a huge candy store. And to think this day started with, "Hey man, whatcha doin this afternoon?".....

  • A Day in the Life of the Duke Boys- 1/17/2009.... A Day in the Life of the Duke Boys- 1/17/2009.... A Day in the Life of the Duke Boys- 1/17/2009.... A Day in the Life of the Duke Boys- 1/17/2009.... A Day in the Life of the Duke Boys- 1/17/2009.... A Day in the Life of the Duke Boys- 1/17/2009....