Bailey, North Carolina: Home of the Eight Foot Six Bridge

Driving a car comes with a lot of associated hazards like wrecks and losing hubcaps and other upsetting things. I don’t know much about it, being a lifelong nondriver, but it seems like a crazy world of terror, imo. Until we moved into Sneer HQ, I had never in my life realized that delivery trucks had to be careful about the height of bridges. At the end of our block, there is an 11’6″ bridge, and there have been a number of instances where we have thought the house is caving in but it was actually just another truck being peeled of its roof a few hundred feet away. Fun! In conclusion, I did not realize bridges were such menaces.

This brings me to today’s article topic! No, I have never been to Bailey — let me get that established right away. Even my friend who drives a delivery truck in that region has not been there, because she could not fit the truck under this incredibly low bridge I’m about to tell you more about. However, her astonishment enabled me to learn of this town, and now, you too can enjoy what it has to offer.

According to their website, they are the Home of the Country Doctor Museum. I am honestly very eager to see this museum for myself some day, but I understand if not everyone is as enthusiastic about strange small museums as I am. This is why I would like to offer unasked for advice to Bailey concerning tourism.

Focus on the Bridge

North Carolina had a very popular YouTube channel for the 11’8″ bridge, which uploaded many instances of trucks of all kinds being destroyed by this low overpass, apparently not paying attention to all of the blinking lights and warning signs suggesting that they turn back. Sadly, I have heard that the state has given in and raised that overpass to the standard height, and the YouTube channel will have to remain as a nostalgia piece. Get your own YouTube, Bailey! Film the seven cars per day which safely go beneath the bridge, and the one delivery truck that has to turn around every so often because the driver needed to stop at a public restroom. Promote yourselves! Put it on tripadvisor as a third attraction.

Be Controversial

On the wall of the overpass, right next to the “welcome to Bailey” sign, create a splendid mural that announces to all visitors that trucks are FORBIDDEN. Don’t go so far as to use expletives, which is how I first imagined it, because that would not be indicative of a good place to raise a family free of trucks. Just saturate the tone of your antitruck ways with all the F words that your bridge builders apparently felt towards delivered goods in those haughty towering trailers.

Get Piggly Wiggly in on It

Have them advertise as the only grocery store in the continental United States that receives delivery by foot and cart. Produce is local only, and national items are stopped at the outskirts of town and walked in one pallet at a time. Not even lifter machines from warehouses can make it under that 8’6″ bridge. I call them lifter machines because I am a lifelong nonworker of warehouses and shipyards. You know what I mean though. Google would too, but I am BUSY WRITING.

Establish a Film Club and Make Movie Magic

Imagine a town where people are prohibited from putting up basketball hoops. No one is allowed to slam dunk or hop up to heights exceeding eight and a half feet. The small town of fewer than a thousand citizens are superstitious of taller things that aren’t buildings or the Piggly Wiggly sign. They get uneasy. They consider it indecent! Then, recreate Footloose, but with basketball. Call it a documentary because I am choosing to believe that I have divined the truth of life in Bailey.

Stay out, giants!

Buy Robert Wadlow’s Skeleton and Display It Next to the Bridge

A cut out of him might also work, but will be less of a draw. Mr. Wadlow was an inch shy of nine feet tall, and so crippled by his gigantism that he could not have pulled off the feat of limbo dance that he would have had to have done to visit the Country Doctor Museum. Perhaps the mural denying trucks should also speak ill of world record holding tall people. Delicious, attracting controversy. Mmmm.

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