Thursday, February 4, 2016

You Might Be a Southerner If...Part One

I am sure most of you are familiar with Jeff Foxworthy's You Might Be a Redneck if jokes. Of course many assume that all Southerners are Rednecks. However they would be wrong. A recent conversation with my aunt about funeral homes led me to write this post.

You might be a Southerner if...

1. You have your local funeral home website bookmarked on your computer. You need to know when to take a cake or casserole to the bereaved family. And heaven forbid if you miss a visitation. I was telling my Aunt Joyce that I had Peeples Funeral Home bookmarked on my computer so I could keep up with deaths in my home town. Well Aunt Joyce informed me that you can sign up for an email alert when a new obit is posted. Who knew? When I was a little girl and I sat down to my gravy and biscuits every morning, the radio was tuned to the Dalton radio station that aired the local funeral notices. It starts early here in the south, our preoccupation with death! It might explain all those famous Southern authors.

2. You love Gravy and Biscuits. ( See above) And those biscuits are not out of a can but lovingly made with White Lily flour by the hands of a good Southern Woman.

3.You think Bless your heart is the perfect come back when you do not know what to say. It can be sympathetic or smart alecky( another southernism). Take your pick.

4.Your first chore on moving into a new home is locating your Tornado Closet.  I am not joking, we really do look for our safe room! Now days many new homes have a reinforced storage room for the residents to run to for safety.  My aunt and two cousins had their house explode around them in the tornado outbreak of April 3, 1974. All three got out with minor injuries and for this we truly thanked God. One day while I was walking in my neighborhood, a neighbor who I met for the first time, showed me his tornado shelter in his garage. It is a Big Thing in tornado alley.

5.You push a BUGGY at the grocery store, you MASH the elevator button and you are always FIXIN to do something.  Another favorite word of mine is DRECKLY....what in the world you are thinking?? Well when I was a little girl and I would ask my mother when we were going to do something, she would reply, "Dreckly"  I was practically an adult before I realized it was DIRECTLY. Another old Southern word that is dying out for lack of use these days. And maybe it is just an Appalachian word. You will hear many old English expressions in the hills of North Georgia, East Tennessee and Virginia.

I will post my last five Southernisms tomorrow.  I think it is very interesting how each section of our country has its own sayings and customs. When I lived in Louisville, Kentucky I always laughed when my Kentucky friends said Earn for Iron. As in, " I better go now, I've got to go home and Earn."  Of course now the funny thing about that saying is that you would think you need to Earn!!


Heather said...

Every once in a while Andrew will say something and I give him a confused look and he says that it must be a southern thing. His mom is from Texas and he spent his first 6-9 months of life there.

The odd thing is, when he is really tired he tends to get a bit of a southern accent. I can't explain it, but it happens!

Arlene Grimm said...

Heather, your husband got started out right!:) My husband's father is from Minnesota and his Mama was old Savannah Southern. As a result, my husband has very little accent at all. People always ask him where he is from! But his Southern i's give him away as a Southerner.

Terri D said...

Have you ever read any of the Stephanie Plum books by Janet Evanovich? Stephanie's grandma never misses a funeral (and has been known to steal things from the casket...). That's what I thought of when I read your #1!!

I have adopted many of the southern slang words, having lived in Virginia and Florida for so many years, however I still have some of my midwestern words too. It is interesting to note the differences in regions.

Thank you for the sweet valentine!! It arrived yesterday!!

Arlene Grimm said...

Terri, I actually started saying Pop for soda when we lived in KY. I cut that out once I was back in the south. Many people think Louisville is a southern city but it is more midwestern in my opinion. Yes, I have read the Stephanie Plum books and that Grandma is hilarious.

doodles n daydreams said...

I remember my grandmother saying 'directly' when we asked for things as well - but not 'dreckly'. And I'm from 'the coast' in New Zealand. It's interesting to read of regional words, recipes, sayings etc.


Arlene Grimm said...

Southerners have changed a lot of old English words Diana. I guess it is the drawl!

Tif Nichols Fannin said...

I say pop!lol My mamaw passed away 3 years ago from cancer. Before that, though, maybe 2 years or so, she wanted to "learn the computer". . .and she did! She made me open tabs for Facebook, her Gmail, and both local funeral home pages.haha And so help someone if they closed one of her tabs (they were going to need their heart blessed afterwards)!

I'm having biscuits and gravy when I head home this weekend:) Oh, and I say "retch" instead reached, which drives my husband batty.

And Lexington is more southern than midwestern, even though it's in about the same spot as Louisville when it comes down north/south. I think that it probably goes back to the Civil War (I find history fascinating if not before. Transylvania University used to be known as the Harvard of the South, and Belle Watkins from Gone with the Wind is actually based on a Lexington personality, Belle Brezing. Super interesting--Google it:) I did a paper on some of Lexington's history for my seminar in law school that if you're really interested, you can read sometime. Also, to add to the conundrum, technically where I come from in eastern Kentucky is farther South than Lexington, but Lexington is much more southern than eastern Kentucky ever thought of

Interesting post, friend! And thank you for my sweet card:)


Mari said...

That was fun! It's so interesting hearing about things from different areas of the country.
In our area we all have basements for tornado shelters, and we say Pop!

Arlene Grimm said...

Tif you are right...Lexington is very different from Louavul. They may say it Southern but the flavor of the town is very different. I did enjoy living in Louavul and if we could have made a good living there we would have been happy to stay. College professor salaries and three children with a stay at home mother did not go together. But now I love Alabama and feel God has allowed me to live in some great places. Thanks for the history trivia. I loved GWTW and found that Belle Watling tidbit interesting!! And I now I want you to sign up for Good Reads since you are such a voracious reader, I would love to see what you are reading.

Mari, some lucky people have basements. And some of the new shelters are literally holes in the garage that hold about 6 people comfortably. My neighbor says you have to register this type of shelter with the police and fire district in your area so they know to look for you in the shelter if there is debris on top of it. I thought that was good planning. And I love Minnesota and Michigan accents...they sound alike to me. You have such a crisp distinctive.