Rebecca Ranson

Rebecca Hargett Ranson, 1943-2017

The following is an obituary written by the family of Rebecca Ranson. Rebecca Hargett Ranson, playwright, activist and arts leader, passed on to the next life on Sept. 4, 2017, at the age of 73, following a ...
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Topher Payne: Bad day prepper

Playwright and writer Topher Payne

Well, it turns out the Mayans were just as reliable about predicting the end of our civilization as they were at predicting their own.

I was charitable enough to give them until the end of the year, but 2012 officially came to a close without any of the pyrotechnics promised by doomsday preppers or John Cusack collecting a paycheck. Oh well. Guess I’ll get to that laundry I was putting off.

When folks watch a movie like “2012” (which no one should) or a TV show like “Walking Dead” (which everyone should), they tend to put themselves in the shoes of the survivors, saying, “I’d get myself to an army base, because they’re totally secure and I could pig out on MREs.”

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Topher Payne: When good enough isn’t good enough

Playwright and writer Topher Payne

We live in a part of town that people tend to pass through on their way to somewhere more desirable — the remnants of a once-picturesque 1950s suburb built around Avondale Mall.

That mall is now a Wal-Mart that managed to grow so sketchy in its brief existence that the Wal-Mart people decided to build another one less than five minutes away.

This is a model established to great success by other businesses in our area: Bad Wal-Mart is within spitting distance of Scary Wells Fargo, Don’t Go To That Kroger, and The Pizza Hut Where You Might Die.

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Topher Payne: Choice of reason

Playwright and writer Topher Payne

The office park where I spend my days is across the street from the Feminist Women’s Health Clinic, or as the protestors standing in our parking lot call it, “Abortionland.”

They’re usually there on Wednesdays and Fridays, so if you’re planning on getting a pap smear or somethin’ over there, you might want to schedule around those days.

The loudest is a woman caring a sign which reads, “I REGRET MY ABORTION.” I call her “Irma” for short. I have learned so much about Irma’s personal narrative on walks to and from my car.

Let me assure you: She really, really regrets her abortion. She thinks about it every day of her life. The child she did not have would be 37 by now. Mathematically, that means she has been screaming about her regret since Gerald Ford was in the Oval Office.