Sunday, October 18, 2009

Would you know a Southerner if you saw one?

I was settin' here staring at the computer, deep thoughts rolling thru my brain (heh.) when I starting thinking that a lot of my faithful readers are not from the South and might not know a real Southern man or woman if they ran into one. Not that they're hard to mistake, but ya never know.

So I've decided today is "lesson day" here at the Dew.


Let's start with the womenfolk.

There are 2 main types of Southern women, and then there's an in-between version. Now hush up like I jes tole ya to and pay attention right quick!

The first type of Southern woman is the one depicted most in the movies. These women truly exist. As a matter of fact I went to school with several of them and they astounded me with the determination to put forth a proper front at all times. These women always have the "done" hair, the perfect make-up, the clothes just so. No one, since they were 5 and started in the pagents, has ever seen them without their make-up. Not even their mamas. They can wear heels, big poofy hair and real lipstick (not gloss) in 110 degree heat. They ALWAYS have shoes on. They actually say things like "I swan", Well, I neveh", and the such.

But beneath their glossed over exterior and their simpering, eyelash blinking ways, they are pure steel. They will smack you down in a heartbeat if you peeve them off in any way. Be it verbally to your face, or something let loose thru the halls of the local church - you will be dragged down and stomped on before you can say "boo". If that doesn't work, well all I can say it watch out for snakes inexplicably using your car for a nap.

The Special Forces of the Government should all recruit these girls.

The second group of Southern women are the Redneck Women. You know just by looking at them that if you tick 'em off you're pert much doomed. If you live through the first phase of retaliation, you'll never show your face at the Piggly Wiggly again.

These woman look "country", but they are very comfortable, and yes proud, of their look and their heritage. There is no shame in being a redneck. I want to say that now. One, because I truly believe that and admire them for their stand, but two, I also don't want my butt kicked to Tupelo.

Redneck women are most comfortable in tank tops and tight jeans - and they look good in it! They also tend to have full make-up on at all times. Truly I will admit that this is my one strong failing as a Southern woman, far too many people see me without make-up. Redneck women often do not have shoes on, but if they do, they tend to be boots. Boots and tank tops look really cool to me. Redneck women LOVE trucks. (I am about 75% redneck, if not more!) Who needs a wussy SUV when you can throw all the kids into the back of a truck. They love to duck the branches on the way to the store - it's a fun game.

Finally, there is the in-between Southern Woman. These are the women that watch a lot of t.v. and see how the rest of the world lives. They decide to give it a try. They try Yuppie, or Grunge, or Sophisticated Bitch. Just by looking at them you can't tell they're Southern. These are the ones, that be it for a short or long period of time, try to hide their Southern-niss. But then they open their mouth and just can't pull it off.

No, not the accent, the words. They still call people Honey and Sugar - even if they say it with venom in their voices. (Some gal called me Sugar the other day and my stars, if that one word had poison in it, I'd be dead now.) They may be snotty and short tempered, but they'll still remember to ask after your mama. They all know how to make a funeral casserole. They too usually have full make-up on. Shoes are optional on this bunch. I might point out that a majority of them come back home before too long. I know, I did.


Now, let's discuss the menfolk.

Now, I will start out by saying that on the whole, I adore Southern Men! Be they rednecks or true Southern Gentlemen, I love them all. There's just a general sweetness there. Sure, sure, there's assholes everywhere in the world and these guys certainly aren't perfect, but on the whole, you jess wanna give them all a little ole bit of sugah.

There is, of course, the Southern Gentleman. He is well groomed, fond of seersucker suits (Of course Matlock ruined that and the trend is waining.) This is a man that will stand at a public door holding it open for up to 1/2 an hour if he sees a woman anywhere in the area that might just possibly be heading that way. Then will apologize sincerely when his arm is so tired he can't hold it up anymore, or he's now running terribly late for his gout surgery. He tips his hat, he carries items, he tells you when it's safe to cross. Granted, if you are a strong, feminist type of woman, he will drive you insane with his soliticious attitude. You will be smacking him away from you.

This type of Southern man firmly believes that women are the delicate flowers his mama always told him they were and that they need to be consetted and cared for. He does not think less of them, he just thinks they need careful handling. When one turns on him, he is truly stunned.

The next type of Southern Man is of course the Redneck man. He tends to look much different than the Southern Gentleman. He favors Levis or Wranglers, workboots, and t-shirts. I tend to put the men in the "wife beater" shirts into a different category so we'll stick with t-shirts here. He ALWAYS has a ball cap or trucker hat on (basically same hat, but one says John Deere or some such tool company and the other has a local baseball team on it.) Some of these guys, in certain parts of the South, are very fond of cowboy boots instead of work books. Still wears a cap though. For special events, he may show up in a cowboy hat. He of course, drives a truck.

Unfortunately, Mullets still appear to be an optional hairstyle for Redneck men.

Now these guys are more fun then the gentleman type, but still very caring of the Southern Women. They too hold doors open and tote stuff. They will wipe the coonhound hairs off the truck seat before hoisting you up over the giant tires and setting you down into the cab. Then they'll take you off-roading through the mud, to the beer and bonfire parties, a little cow-tippin' here and there.... all the good ole' boy stuff. They'll go line dancing with ya.

There really isn't an in-between type of Southern Man as they don't get all wierded out like we women do when we decide to hide our "true roots" (and doesn't that phrase have SO many different meanings!) So if they're Southern, you pert much know it. They may wear Izod, but they may also have chaw in their cheek. They may look suave and sophisticated, but they'll still wander into whatever hole in the wall luncheonette has the best chicken fried steak.

With a Southern Man, you know what you're getting your hands on. And I do appreciate that.

You will note that on both the men and the women, I just ignored that last niggling category - White Trash. I like to try to say something nice about all the categories, but that one I gave up on. It's just nasty and I chose not to go there today. Anyway, since living in different parts of the country - well, white trash is everywhere, it's not just southern.

There ya'll go, a lesson on Southern men and women. I hope I've given ya'll some educational information today.


Idgie has once again pulled out some old stuff of her own, from the days I had time to write!