Once every six months or so, the North Carolina Rabbit Hole experiences the perfect storm. A Holeacane, if you will. In this case, I had story coming together, but then I ran out of time to finish it the way I wanted. So then I started working on a shorter, easier story, only to find that the easy version would be much better with an interview I couldn’t land in time. So then I tried one more thing, and it became clear that I have to at least ATTEMPT to ask a highly distinguished person an insanely dumb question.
But never fear! When these things happen, I turn this space over to you, the highly intelligent and slightly odd Rabbit Hole reader. I’m opening the comments once again for a Reddit-style Ask Me Anything, where you can pose questions to me about North Carolina, this newsletter, or, well anything. If you want to know how how this works, or want to see if I’ve answered your question before, you can check here to see how this went last time. Or maybe you’re a “This is more of a comment than a question” person and just want to get something off your chest. Go for it. And if you know the answer to a question you see, don’t wait for me! Just go ahead and answer it. All I ask is that you not be spammy or mean or spread conspiracy theories about Venus Fly Traps or whatever. I’ll try to get back to as many of these as I can over the next few days. Have fun!
Have you ever done a story or deep dive on Long Sam from Lake Norman? There’s a small paragraph in the Lake Norman wiki page but I can’t find anything deeper about it and it seems like a tall tale.
I am sure you’ve addressed this before, but what brought you down to North Carolina from Ohio in the first place? Why didn’t you pursue an Ohio Rabbit Hole?
An Adopt A Highway sign located on Hwy 321 N heading from Lenoir to Blowing Rock has intrigued me for years. It lists as the sponsor "Prince - Musician and Artist." Caldwell County, NC is not the kind of place I would expect to see this tribute.
More of an update and a result of your investigative and entertaining research vs a question: I recently got an EV car and tried to get a personalized NC license plate with gas in it, like GasEX, No Gas, etc. Now NC will not allow a license plate with ‘gas’ in it. Weird and a result of the FART situation in Asheville I’ll bet. Jeremy, I’ll give your highlight of those FART troublemakers the credit (or blame). No farts and now, no gas.
I've noticed a great many women in headscarves panhandling in the Triangle lately. I see that I'm not the only one: https://www.reddit.com/r/raleigh/comments/uxvxu6/the_panhandlers_wearing_scarves/?rdt=43593
This has been going on for some time in California, where it seems that they are Roma. Is that true here now?
Do you ever get recognized by fans while out in public? Have they ever made it weird?
Have ya ever been to Toad Suck, Ark? Asking for a friend.
Do you ever worry that you’ll run out of topics?
I admire your enthusiasm to actually experience what you write about instead of just researching and reporting from a desk chair!
I’d love to better understand the THREE food deserts we have in NC (West Charlotte, SE Raleigh, NE Greensboro). I’m sure systemic reasons are at play, but what are they? Is the solution as simple as building a grocery store? How are people in these areas getting fresh produce currently (if at all)?
I don’t know any geotechnical engineers but maybe you’ll meet one at a cocktail party. Piedmont houses don’t have basements because of the thick clay soil. However, in engineering, rarely is the answer “this is impossible” but is instead “this is out of your budget.” If you had unlimited money to sink into an unremarkable suburban North Carolina home to build a basement what would the design look like, what is the ballpark cost and what geotechnical forces does your design have to overcome?
Just passing along some recently learned info: the Australian state of Queensland is Sister-States with South Carolina. Maybe you can get a business trip Down Under to investigate.
Did you know there is a shortage of helium. We get helium from outer space.
Interstate on ramps sometimes have two lanes that merge before you actually merge again onto the Interstate! I understand why this happens, but sometimes the right lane merges, sometimes the left lane merges. It SEEMS random but there is probably some method for this decision. How does NCDOT decide?
On a similar topic - on NC state roads sometimes NCDOT takes a lane away. Sometimes the right lane, sometimes the left lane. Not talking about "truck" lanes on hills here, just regular roads. We joke that a lane is being "punished" or put in "time out", but how do they (NCDOT) decide which lane must be sacrificed?
Is pimento cheese really the "pate of the South"? Whose idea was it to take pimentos out of olives and stick them in cheese?
Thinking about the Carrowinds amusement park ride safety issue that went viral last summer. I asked this same question a few years to Axios for a follow up story. The park is straddling the North and South Carolina border with portions that appear to be in each state, mostly South Carolina. The border has been in a sort of minor flux where some properties are being ceded back and forth between the states in the adjoining counties. Ever so curious which state, or maybe both is actually responsible for safety inspections, tax revenues, fire and police responses. Always curious because each state even had different COVID responses. I might add Carrowinds seems to have done a good job of straddling the fence and keeping each state satisfied to provide revenues to the area.
Props for being honest and finding a way to still get something interesting. Question: What's the rabbit-holiest rabbit hole you've ever rabbited down?
There's a song written by an Ohio bluegrass group called Northwest Connection about a man from North Carolina who had a house full of rattlesnakes, purportedly to keep thieves away. Any truth to the story?
Why hasn't these been made into a movie, you slacker... 🤪 "" Rate Hike Mike Gone Wild"
Why is there a statue Andy Taylor and Opie, who never visited the Capitol City , in a park in Raleigh, instead of a statue of Barney Fife , perhaps in the YMCA sauna, since he frequently made comments about going to Raleigh for the weekend?
How do you decide whether a story is Rabbit Hole worthy or simply not bizarre enough to bother?
Will I win the NC Primary for Insurance Commissioner?