Thursday, April 12, 2007

Being Southern: A Practical Primer

Stolen shamelessly from Coffeypot, a how-to manual on everything Southern:

There are some great things about being Southern. For example, every Southerner loves grits. It is required, or you have to leave your family behind and move up North. Grits also has a meaning other than pure breakfast nirvana. It is also an acronym for Girls Raised In The South.

Southern Women are made different than those from other areas. For example:

Southern women appreciate their natural assets:
Clean skin.
A winning smile.
That unforgettable Southern drawl.

Southern women know their manners:
"Yes, ma'am."
"Yes, sir."
"Why, no, Billy!"

Southern women have a distinct way with fond expressions:
"Y'all come back!"
"Well, bless your heart."
"Drop by when you can."
"How's your Momma?"

Southern women know their summer weather report:

Southern women know their vacation spots:
The beach
The rivuh
The crick

Southern women know the joys of June, July, and August:
Colorful hi-heel sandals
Strapless sun dresses
Iced sweet tea with mint

Southern women know everybody's first name:

Southern women know the movies that speak to their hearts:
Fried Green Tomatoes
Driving Miss Daisy
Steel Magnolias
Gone With The Wind

Southern women know their religions:

Southern women know their country breakfasts:
Red-eye or Sawmill gravy
Country ham
Mouth-watering homemade biscuits with momma's homemade jelly and butter.

Southern women know their cities dripping with Southern charm:
Foat Wuth

Southern women know their elegant gentlemen:
Men in uniform.
Men in tuxedos
Rhett Butler

Southern girls know their prime real estate:
The Mall
The Country Club
The Beauty Salon

Southern girls know the 3 deadly sins:
Having bad hair and nails
Having bad manners
Cooking bad food

But being Southern isn’t only for women. No, sir! Everyone born and reared in the South is taught many things that baffle the interlopers from the North. It is things only Southerners know, such as:

Only a Southerner knows the difference between a hissie fit and a conniption fit, and that you don't "HAVE" them, you "PITCH" them.

Only a Southerner knows how many fish, collard greens, turnip greens, peas, beans, etc., make up "a mess."
Only a Southerner can show or point out to you the general direction of "yonder."

Only a Southerner knows exactly how long "directly" is, as in: "Going to town, be back directly."

Even Southern babies know that "Gimme some sugar" is not a request for the white, granular sweet substance that sits in a pretty little bowl in the middle of the table.

All Southerners know exactly when "by and by" is. They might not use the term, but they know the concept well.

Only a Southerner knows instinctively that the best gesture of solace for a neighbor who's got trouble is a plate of hot fried chicken and a big bowl of cold potato salad. If the neighbor's trouble is a real crisis, they also know to add a large banana puddin!

Only Southerners grow up knowing the difference between "right near" and "a right far piece." They also know that "just down the road" can be 1 mile or 20.

Only a Southerner, both knows and understands, the difference between a redneck, a good ol' boy, and po' white trash.

No true Southerner would ever assume that the car with the flashing turn signal is actually going to make a turn.

A Southerner knows that "fixin" can be used as a noun, a verb, or an adverb.

Only Southerners make friends while standing in lines; that when we're "in line," we talk to everybody!

Put 100 Southerners in a room and half of them will discover they're related, even if only by marriage.

In the South, "y'all" is singular, "all y'all" is plural.

Southerners know grits come from corn and how to eat them.

Every Southerner knows tomatoes with eggs, bacon, grits, and coffee are perfectly wonderful; that red eye gravy is also a breakfast food; and that fried green tomatoes are not a breakfast food.

When you hear someone say, "Well, I caught myself lookin'," you know you are in the presence of a genuine Southerner!

Only true Southerners say "sweet tea" and "sweet milk." Sweet tea indicates the need for sugar and lots of it -- we do not like our tea unsweetened. "Sweet milk" means you don't want buttermilk.

Contrary to whatever you Yankees have been told, "macaroni and cheese" is a vegetable. Don't ya'll know that mac & cheese goes so well with taters and gravy, you just can't have enough starch in your diet.

And a true Southerner knows you don't scream obscenities at little old ladies who drive 30 MPH on the freeway. You just say, "Bless her heart" ... and go your own way.

To those of you who are still a little embarrassed by your Southerness: Take two tent revivals and a dose of sausage gravy and call me in the morning. Bless your heart!

And to those of you who are still having a hard time understanding all this Southern stuff, ... bless your hearts, I hear they are fixin' to have classes on Southernness as a second language!

And for those that are not from the South but have lived here for a long time, all y'all need a sign to hang on y'alls front porch that reads "I ain't from the South, but I got here as fast as I could."

Southern girls know men may come and go, but friends are fahevah !

Now...... Shugah, send this to someone who was raised in the South or wish they had been!

And, Shugah, if you're a Northern transplant, bless your little heart, fake it. We know you got here as fast as you could.


Big sugah goes out to Coffeypot for posting this, and bless his heart for allowing me to steal it! Also, I have NEVER seen anything more true than not assuming a car with its directional signal on is actually going to make (and complete) a turn. It's more like a red herring, to keep all the other drivers on their toes.


Marni said...

Being a Georiga Peach myself I can relate to each and every one of the items on this list. Yankees just don't understand, do they sugah?

ccw said...

This is hysterical!

Casey said...

So is "I don't blame ya" a midwestern thing?

As in:

Person 1: I'm taking off work tomorrow to go to the doctor.

Person 2: Well, I don't blame ya.


Person 1: I've been living in a box under the I-65/I-264 interchange ever since my house burned down last Christmas!

Person 2: Well, I don't blame ya.

I don't really understand it, but it seems to be the standard response to any report of misfortune.

amy said...

A few years ago, my friend and I attended a professional conference in another large city in your state. We both agree we had a terrible time, for many reasons. But I just know that if I had a) had gone to your part of Georgia when I made my visit and b) known you beforehand, I would have had a muuuuuccchh better experience. And did I mention "muuuuuuuucccchh"?

amy said...

OMG, KLee! I just reread the part about the porch sign! I was just having an argument with my students last week about how to make y'all and all y'all possessive. I argued that if we add an 's to a word or name to make it possessive, then the only way to make all y'all possessive is to say all y'all's. As in "It's time to hand in all y'all's papers."


Karyn said...

Okay, lol, as your token Yankee... I object to some of these - and a fair few ah did know mahself, havin' family in Memphis, dontcha know.

A Yankee girl through and through, I do too make friends in line! And I say all y'all! And I know all about pitchin' a fit, or fixin' to pitch a fit!

Harrumph! LOL...