It’s been over 50 years since Andy Griffith graced television with The Andy Griffith Show and there’s still something about the little town of Mayberry that hits me so hard in 2018. Even though the show first aired in the early 60s, Andy Griffith had said himself that the town of Mayberry wasn’t necessarily a current place even for that time. There’s a much stronger feel that resonates with the 1930s more than it did the 60s and that Mayberry was based on a time that had already gone by.
I mean how can you not love a town where the town drunk stumbles in to the jail and locks himself up with the keys to get a good night’s rest in a bed away from his wife? From Andy’s idyllic family with little Opie and Aunt Bee, there’s a certain sense of calming and desire that comes from the show. Fast forward 50 years and now I think I know why that is.
Today there’s such a stress on financial security and figuring out your future. But, in Mayberry there are no such worries. From Floyd the Barber to Gomer to any of the sweet young ladies that pass through Andy’s eye, the real goal for each day is to simply live it to the fullest and take it a day at a time. (I guess that’s why all of Andy’s girlfriends comes and go without any mention.) Each day is filled with laughter, not because any jokes are being made, but because the people of Mayberry are just able to find happiness and laughter naturally within each of the scenarios life throws their way. I guess that’s why I still crack up every time Barney locks himself in the jail cell.
There’s an intentional pureness in each character that creates a true feeling of what it means to live in America and furthermore, what it means to live as a human amongst other human beings. I think that’s something that’s missing today. Everyone’s trying to one-up the next person, people are greasy and greedy, and it’s totally ok to finesse the next person in line to get ahead. Unfortunately, that’s what life has essentially come down to, so I’m not knocking the finesse. However, I think we can all agree that living in a place like Mayberry is what we would all ideally want ourselves. I guess watching The Andy Griffith show gives me an outlet to imagine a world that we could someday live in or perhaps it’s just me taking advantage of escaping to a fantasy world we’ll never get to live in. Either way, I think we all want our own Mayberry to call home.