9.28.2011

sweet tea & front porches


i LOVE being southern!
no really. i identify myself with the south almost as much as i claim irishness and ballet in my dna...
i know folks say florida isn't really southern, not in a deep south cultural sense. there is truth in that...orlando is decidedly un-southern. ugh. the closest you can get to a southern atmosphere in downtown orlando, or near orlando for that matter, is if you bring it with you. like going with my friend Mo who's 'bama accent, charm & mannerisms drip southern climate. thankfully, the farther north you go the more southern you are. jacksonville feels more southern than orlando. and several miles south of the georgia or alabama border you're as southern as it gits.

but somehow, i've claimed southern identity. i have quirks of thinking that have become almost rules in my mind. probably fed by growing up on Southern Living, To Kill a Mockingbird, yes ma'am &loyalty to family & country. being a primary babysitter during my teens for a native GA woman who breathed deep south hospitality didn't hurt either...

silly things, little things make the south home. i don't realize how much it's true until i'm in the north or out west for a few weeks. then the first stop across the mississippi or below maryland just feels like...mmm i'm HOME!! i belong here! lol.
certain things i think define my southern bend of mind...like good, homemade food being central to all fellowship. whether it's a football party, having folks for dinner or just an afternoon at the house. gotta be some time spent in the kitchen! open-door & more the merrier policies. sweet tea is made with real sugar. the best teams in college football reside in the SEC. unless they're genius minds going to yale i expect my kids to pick an SEC college... [except for that horrid black & red poser team... ;)] i'm suprised when a guy holds a door or gives up his seat for me, but then i ALWAYS think "he must be southern". fishing? invented in the south. c'mon, you have to take your time and can't be hurried it HAD to come from "us"! negative things too, like politeness at all costs to your face, even at the sake of honesty. but i'm not really into analyzing southerness here...just wanted to write and this comes easily...anyway...i don't abide by it, but i feel the unspoken code of the south that says a woman isn't dressed if she leaves the house without eyeliner & polished hair...tshirt and jeans? gym clothes? acceptable attire, IF you have a full face and perfect hair. any event after 6 oclock, & special occasions from football games to baby showers call for the nicer end of your wardrobe...i kind of love all the idiosyncrasies, the stereotypes--both true and false; and the things i assume are common the world over until i leave the south and find dang, took that for granted! mostly its the people. duh. cultures die without people continuing to carry them along by their actions &lifestyles. i intend to have a southern atmosphere wherever i am. i want my home to be known for a listening ear, good food, and the place to watch every gator game come football season.

ran out of words, but i just wanted to write something true but non-thinking...

1 comment:

Abi said...

carry on! mm, so good and so true! fyi- your house sounds like the next best thing to Heaven ;)