Confession is supposedly good. So I will. I got my idea for this from the title to an article in Janice’s November 2013 edition of Southern Living in their online version called Why We’re Thankful To Be Southern. I haven’t read their version, but here’s mine.
Ten reasons I’m glad to be Southern:
- We real Southerners, and I’m the perfect example, talk like God talks, and like Griffin Bell, Andy Griffith, Sam Ervin, Herman Talmadge did, and like Zell Miller does. At least, that’s what I think.
- F’s aren’t bad. In fact, they are good and essential for Southerners. F for family. F for friends. F for faith. F for football. And, F for food. Come to think about it, all of these F’s kinda’ go together.
- Barbeque, fried chicken, grits, dressing, greens, banana puddin’, homemade peach ice cream, watermelons, butter beans, peas, Co-colas, sweet ice tea, potato salad, sausage, congealed salads, country cured ham, fried fish, deviled eggs, casseroles, etc., etc. Just good, simple, ample, delicious Southern food.
- Southerners are generally humble. We earned it. We lost The War and although it’s been 150 years ago, we’re just getting over it. Plus, it’s how we’ve been depicted on television and in the movies, the fact we say “y’all” (which is a great word) and how some of us talk (see number one above). Also, our Mamas taught us not to be haughty and uppity.
- We Southerners, despite the way we are depicted (we lost “The War”, you know), are probably kinder, politer and more moderate than the good folks in the rest of our country. Atlantans or Bostonians? Auburn or Michigan State? Charleston or Chicago? Savannah or San Francisco? You get it, don’t you?
- Good, cultured Southerners say words like “please, yes sir, no ma’am, thank you, can I help you, etc.” Some of us even say, just like they depict us on television, “God bless you” and, “Bless your heart.” Anything wrong with these combinations of words? We also say “Merry Christmas” and not “Happy Holidays.”
- Let’s get back to a couple of F’s. Football. Every Southerner has a favorite college football team. Even my Mama, who is a sharp 93 years of age, and probably hasn’t seen a game (television or otherwise) in fifteen years is for the Georgia Bulldogs. And, all true Southerners (well, most of them) have faith, a church, go, want their children and grandchildren to go, and are proud of it (in spite of being otherwise humble – see 4 above).
- We have good weather. We have the seasons of the year, and we like that, but they are not severe. True, it used to get mighty hot here in the summer, but Mr. Carrier, God bless him, fixed that for us. Hallelujah!
- True Southerners remember lots about our past, their past, and, yes, your past. They know that Stonewall Jackson, and his men, made a forced march of 14 miles on a hot May day in 1863 and decimated the Yankees at Chancellorsville. He knows that his granddaddy used to own 306 acres in Telfair County, Georgia but lost it when the boll weevils destroyed his cotton crops. And, she knows that your aunt used to play the piano at a local church (yes, she knows which church), but was relieved of her musical duties when she became too close to the choir director.
- Southerners, those born and raised here, know that we are a little different than folks in the rest of the country, but not as different as we used to be. And, lots of us saw some good in this difference, and are sad about the ways in which the South used to be different and unique but has become a homogenized part of America.
- Southerners are great writers, race car drivers, football players, politicians, beauty queens, country music stars, wing shooters, dog trainers, soldiers, historians, chefs, cooks, mamas, golfers, actors, preachers, farmers, etc. Just like the good folks in the rest of our great country.
So there you have some of my reasons as to why I’m proud to be a Southerner. And, I know lots of great folks from ‘up North’ who have moved ‘down here’ and they have become proud Southerners, also. God Bless, Y’all.