Go to and type "BFE" in the search bar. The result?
"Abbreviation for Bum Fuck, Egypt. Out in the fucking middle of nowhere."
The real definition should be my town. I live in Corntown, Pennsylvania, and I won't be surprised if you've never heard of it. Such is the case when you live in a small town amongst smaller western Pennsylvanian towns. I'm stuck in the middle of cows, farmland, woods, and, oh, some more cows.
In other words, Bum Fuck, Egypt.
Corntown consists of only ten thousand inhabitants. We have one high school. My graduating class consists of 150 students. No, I didn't forget a zero. I really mean one hundred fifty. We have one movie theater, and it gets movies three or four months after they've been released.
Once we got Star Wars the day is was released. It was a big deal.
Here, you either live in town or out in the middle of nowhere. Living in cornfields pretty much guarantees that you have a farm and that if we get heavy snow and ice, which we do every winter without fail, you can have fun trying to get to school. Because my school district doesn't delay. Ever.
We're also a gossip mill. One time a junior from the high school held a party and the kids got busted for underage drinking. One of the girls ran barefoot into the snowy woods and got frostbite on her toes. But she didn't get caught, so there you go.
Which brings up drinking. When you live in BFE, most kids are absolutely positive that the only thing they can do is drink, do drugs, or have sex. Maybe all three.
Of course, when you do, you've got to expect to be gossiped about in school on Monday. And be sure that the church kids will frown on you, mentioning how you were partying Friday and Saturday night, but showed up to church wearing your Sunday best, where you dazzled the church parents. Most of those parents probably went home and said to their 3.8 GPA, soccer captain, student council president, National Honor Society students that they should be more like that "nice Greg Snow from church," or that "sweet Hannah Plowe that lead the children's Sunday school class" that week.
Oh, yes. Expect to be talked about on Monday.
It's not like anyone is exempt from being talked about, of course. The theater kids talk about theater kids, the hicks talk about hicks, the swimmers talk about swimmers, and on and on it goes. Everyone has a clique, even if your clique is the undefined, "I float around to cliques" clique.
Yes, there is one of those. That's the beauty of living in BFE.
Most kids want to leave. Some want to stay and go to the local Christian college -- mostly those good church kids, who talk about the stoners on Monday. Others say that they want to move to California or New York City and make it big. Most of them end up living on home, maybe in college, maybe not. The majority of kids just end up going to a local college, either to relive high school or to stay in a comfort zone. A few of those college bound kids will go a distance away for whatever reason. To escape family, to escape BFE, whatever. They have their reasons and no one questions them.
When new people move to BFE, everyone knows. Probably on move-in day or before. We know what property is for sale. We know the family who is selling it, their asking price, why they are moving, and where they are moving to. We know the real estate agent who is representing the family (it's probably one of your classmates' moms, anyway). And as soon as the deal is through, we know the history of the family who is buying it.
Different groups at school scramble to claim the new person. Sometimes the preps will get to him. It happens. Other times the theater kids claim her. Both of those scenarios are likely. Extremely likely, actually.
They're probably the two most prominent groups at school. Easily the two groups who cause the most drama. Ironic, huh? The drama group causing drama.
The church kids are usually quiet in their judgment, gossiping only amongst themselves, because that clearly makes it right. The druggies don't care what's happening; some of the druggies are preps at the same time, so they're all in cahoots. Sports teams are pretty much set in stone by the time someone new moves in, so they don't have time to cause problems. They're busy waking up at 5:00 a.m. and sleeping at 11:30 p.m. They run like that yearly.
The band kids keep to themselves for the most part. They all hook up with each other so the rest of the school doesn't really know, and they probably wouldn't care even if they did know.
Every now and then, a new kid is lost to the band group. No one really notices. The new kid is just swept up into the hookups and bus rides that consume the minds of bandies.
A lot of people here are second or third or fourth or, heck, fifth, sixth, seventh generation Corntowners. Their grandparents and great-grandparents and great-great-grandparents and on and on were born and raised here. Your teachers went to school with your parents. Some of your parents were taught by your teachers.
Teachers ask if you are Jane Doe's little brother, or John Smith's little sister. And yes, they are judging you based on your familial relations. Same with your family. You might not want to answer to "Are you Mary Baker's daughter?" if you don't know what kind of relationship your mother had with the inquiring teacher.
We know if your family is split up. In today's day and age, where half of all marriages fail, it shouldn't be a surprise, but in Corntown, it's all juicy gossip. Corntown is made up of average-income, white Presbyterians who are members of their churches and tithe regularly. Not because they want to, but because they're compelled. Need to get to Heaven and all.
If you're different, have fun surviving. You might fit into the freak clique, but no one really likes them. If worse comes to worse, you can hang with the dirties, who no one talks to. They smell, they don't brush their hair. We aren't even sure they bathe.
If you want to avoid that group, keep your secrets quiet. Homosexuality doesn't go over well here. Be offended if someone uses "gay" as an insult. They mean it that way. Not if asked, of course. But you know the intent is there.
Sorry if you're a different race. You are a minority. People will call attention to it and you'll never escape the notice. You'll probably experience some racism and discrimination, unless you're really good at sports. Even then, expect some backlash.
If English is not your native tongue, learn it fast. Corntowners speak American and we will NOT speak your Spanish or your French or your German and certainly not your Arabic, you Middle Eastern terrorist. And get off of our land before you bomb something.
This is Bum Fuck, Egypt. This is Corntown, Pennsylvania.
Welcome to our town. It's a pleasure to have you.
Author's Note: Corntown, PA is not a real place. It's modeled off of a cynical view of the town I live in. I wrote this when I was feeling particularly annoyed at living in BFE one night. I'm not sure if this will continue or not. Right now I have it listed as complete, but I can't say for sure. If I come up with something I feel is worth posting, I'll do it.