‘Flat Taylor’ visits Demopolis grandmother

Published 1:55 pm Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A children’s story entitled “Flat Stanley” tells the story of a boy whose bulletin board falls on him and literally flattens him into a two-dimensional character. He goes on several adventures, outwitting locked doors by sliding under them and mailing himself to different places.

That story led to the Flat Stanley Project, where students sent a version of Flat Stanley to several different places, where he had his photo taken and his adventures chronicled through news articles or letters sent by the character.

A version of that has made its way to Demopolis, as Sharon Farst’s granddaughter – Taylor Goodin, a second-grader in Marion, Ohio – sent her a flat character named Flat Taylor.

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“It’s supposed to serve as a geography lesson,” Farst said. “When they get the articles back, they have to read it.

“It’s really neat! I talked with someone who asked me if I had to send Flat Taylor back, and I said that I’m sure I do, because they didn’t tell me not to. That person said that they knew a person who did this, but the person who received the flat person had to forward it on to somebody else, so it kept traveling, and they see how many letters they can get back.”

Farst gave Flat Taylor a tour of our fair city, taking pictures going down the slide at the park, sitting in a pile of leaves and sitting on a bench at the marina with Farst’s mother.

One of the highlights of Flat Taylor’s trip to Demopolis was going to the Civic Center.

“I taped her to one of the signs, and she’s reading all about Demopolis,” Farst laughed.

Farst brought Flat Taylor with her to Florida to drive her mother home.

“We took the long way around and went through Georgia, so she had another state that she went to,” Farst said. “I wanted to take a picture of her in Florida with a palm tree, but palm trees are so humongous, so I had to find one that was about five feet tall, and I’ve got her standing under the palm tree.”

Farst added captions to the photos, relating what Flat Taylor learned about her visits to cotton fields and peanut fields.

“It was fun to do; it really was,” Farst said. “I made a photo album of all the pictures and the things she did.”

Usually when someone is described as being two-dimensional, it means he hasn’t got much of a personality, but Flat Taylor has her own kind of depth that has helped put Demopolis on the map for a student in Ohio.