Spanky’s Funeral Home in Kissimicoochee, Georgia is fighting for its life, no pun intended. Two years ago, Kitty Stonewall, wife of Mayor Jackson Stonewall and owner of the Mane Attraction Salon, started a wellness campaign that has citizens not only living healthier lives but longer ones.
““My aim was to get people putting something green in their mouth that wasn’t deep-fried in animal fat and to get up off their butts and move,” said Stonewall, “as well as to have really good hair. I mean, name one celebrity with a hard body and split ends!”
Most of Kissimicoochee lauded the idea and jumped on the band wagon for tailgating veggie barbecue parties and cracker areobics in the townsquare. “It’s basically just jazzercize with a shotgun,” said Stonewall, “although no one actually pulls a trigger.”
One person who hasn’t embraced Stonewall’s wellness campaign is Cletus “Spanky” Phelps, owner of Spanky’s Funeral Home, whose business was once booming so much, the company advertised with the slogan: “We’ll plant your loved one in the ground before you can chill a beer between their thighs.
Spanky considered closing the funeral home, but concerned citizens called an emergency town meeting. Although they weren’t willing to give up their healthy ways, they recognized that at some point they were going to die and need a trusted mortician.
““Personally, I’m happy with having my corpse thrown on the highway and picked at by buzzards. Most people, I think, would be fine just swerving around my body,” said Running Water, 52, Manager of the Kissimicoochee Welcome Center and 1/64 proud Native American. “But I get that other people might want options.”
The concerned citizens came up with a controversial solution that is showing results. “We turned Spanky’s into a flea market,” said Running Water. “People can sell arts & crafts, antiques, and pickled vegetables and jams, which has been popular with tourists.”
One of the more successful services Spanky’s has made available is selling time in a closed coffin. Customers can pay to lie in a coffin in 15 minute increments. “Initially, I thought it was creepy,” said Regina Clampett, 38, a homemaker, “but I haven’t been able to find any other way to get any peace and quiet at home, without someone screaming through the door and asking where the ketchup is. Sometimes, I just play Words with Friends on my iPhone, but it’s my time without interruption.”
Spanky seems optimistic about the response to the flea market. “I’m happy the cash is rolling back in, but give me a fat person with a heart condition and a love for fast food any day.”