From the Archives

The Southern Democrat, September 4, 1980

Residents want cable TV

Councilman Bill Self raised the question of cable TV service at Blountsville Town Council meeting Aug. 27. He said a number of people had asked him about it and he had been told that cable representatives are waiting on the city to act. Blountsville Telephone Company asked a year ago to be allowed to install service.

Mayor Jack Millwood told Self that HBO (Home Box Office) charges 50 percent “and the cable people” (the telephone company) don’t feel they can pay the 3 percent franchise tax to the town. “They want to pay 1.5 percent.” The mayor said he had not talked with the town’s attorney.

He reported he had received a letter in July from J&J Television Contractors. The letter asked whether Blountsville has Cablevision and, if not, offered the service. Millwood said he had not yet answered.

Jerome’s no doll

It’s not often you find a man in Blount County who plays with dolls. To meet Bill Ryan on the street or walk in on him at his store downtown in Oneonta, you’d more likely expect to see him with a shotgun under his arm or talking about wishing he had a mule to “talk” to instead of a blankety-blank tractor.

But Bill has a doll! Of course, he stoutly maintains it isn’t a doll. “This is Jerome,” he says, “and he can dance up a storm.”

Bill says he can buck, or clog, or anything. And Jerome is kind of like most folks. He gets down in the dumps from time to time. “He don’t do much during the week, but Friday and Saturday nights he’ll make your hair curl,” Bill says.

In recent months, Bill and his wife Ira have been getting up early – really early – and going to Country Boy Eddie’s show on Channel 6. A couple of times a week, Jerome cuts a dusty in front of the television cameras. Viewers have asked Bill, “Are you real?” and the CBE show is telecast live. So if you can’t sleep early some morning and have nothing better to do, flip on your set. You might catch Jerome in the act.