Who was your first love?
Bo Duke was my first love. It's hard to say exactly when it happened — after all, Dukes of Hazzard was on from 1979 to 1985 — but suffice to say that, somewhere between the ages of 3 and 6, I fell in love for the first time. Apparently the sex appeal of shaggy blonde hair, dreamy blue eyes, and tight jeans transcends puberty.
At daycare, my friend Tina and I used to "be" Daisy Duke while we made the other, younger kids play the roles of Bo and Luke Duke, Uncle Jesse, Crrraaaaazy Cooter, Roscoe P. Coltrane, and Boss Hogg. Tina and I would do the thing where you pull the bottom of your t-shirt up through its own neck to create a makeshift crop top. We were transformed: We were Daisy.
My insistence on continual inhabitation of Hazzard County didn't stop when I got home from daycare. My brother had the full set of Dukes of Hazzard matchbox-type cars. He and I could come up with infinite plotlines involving the General Lee, Daisy's jeep, Uncle Jesse's pickup truck, Cooter's tow truck, and the fleet of police cars belonging to Hazzard's hapless team of deputies and sheriffs. Yes, it involved a great deal of launching of the General Lee from various household surfaces.
That's why my visit to Cooter's Place, a Nashville museum and gift shop devoted to all things Dukes, was legitimately magical. It was as if someone had taken a capsule containing my earliest hopes (being Daisy Duke) and daydreams (marrying Bo Duke someday) and spilled its contents out into several rather haphazardly arranged glass cases.
Thank you, Cooter (aka actor Ben Jones, who runs the place), for understanding my needs. I didn't know how much I needed to see all of this again until it was right there in front of me.
For your viewing pleasure, please enjoy these selected innards of my childhood.