Originally created 05/30/99

Postcard challenge kicks off

You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get people interested in you.

-- Dale Carnegie

Have you noticed how no one invites you over anymore to look at vacation slides?

And whatever happened to monotonous home movies of a summer trip?

Both used to be dreads of my wonder years -- cliches for boredom in the 1960s.

The neighbors would have you over for dinner and then look for an excuse to get out the slide projector and portable screen.

Next would come endless images of tourists standing in front of state park bears, Southwestern cacti or seashore scenes, where women you vaguely recognized tried to avoid being shown in bathing suits.

Well, the era of home movies might have passed, but postcards -- those old vacation favorites -- are still around.

And if the Memorial Day weekend is the traditional beginning of summer vacation, it is also the kickoff of our summer vacation postcard contest.

Here's how it works.

Between now and Labor Day, when many of you are taking some time off, remember your pals back home.

Send a postcard from your travels to me, and I will pass along your progress to those you've left behind.

Our plan is to get a postcard from all 50 states.

Last year, we succeeded easily, with California proving to be our most popular destination. (Georgia was second.)

Not so popular were Kansas, Rhode Island and North Dakota, generating only one card each.

I admit my postcard tastes have changed over the years.

I used to love those typical beach cards featuring young women in bikinis.

But then I got married and mature and parental, so now I say I like the ones that feature a big map of the particular state with images of the state bird in the corner.

I've already received quite a few cards. Brian and Donna Bogardus of Aiken sent 14 -- one from each day of their recent trip to Texas and back.

Brian called a few days later to ask if I would return the cards, and he now has them all on a Web site: http://www.geocities.com/MotorCity/Speedway/6289 /texas.html.

Other cards beating the Memorial Day rush include Carol and Don, who write from Sandbridge Beach, Va., where the "weather has been great so far."

Sarah Underwood Langer sends a card from Hawaii. She writes: "How is the post card business coming? Last year I wrote from California."

And Sandra and Shirley Johnson of Augusta send a card from Las Vegas.

See? It's easy.

Just send them to me at P.O. Box 1928, Augusta, GA 30903.

And those of you who remember to include your return address might hear from me when I go on vacation.

Bill Kirby can be reached at (706) 868-1222, Ext. 107, or bkirby@augustachronicle.com.


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