“There’s no such thing as being too Southern.”
American comedian and author, Lewis Grizzard, was born on this day in 1946 (died 1994)
I love the South.
And no, it has nothing to do with the Confederacy. Although a better understanding of history might do everyone a bit of good.
Not my point.
I love the climate of the south. I love the architecture of the south. The beaches. The people. The cuisine.
Truth is, I live in the former Capitol of the Confederacy (relax, it’s just a reference), and I often think I live too far north.
Not to worry, I have no immediate plans to move. Although I make no secret of the fact that I’d like to retire to the coast.
I suppose there are those who would revoke my southern status if they learned that I don’t like sweet tea.
I mean, I used to. But I got away from the sugar a long time ago. And now the thought of it makes my teeth hurt. For years I drank it with artificial sweetener. Then during the late-great-unpleasantness of last year, I dropped that as well.
And, as a southern writer, I actually talk about bourbon more than I drink. What can I say? It makes me stupid.
It’s good to know your limitations.
For me liquid refreshment these days generally means water, coffee, red wine, and the occasional ale when I’m out with a friend.
What does that have to do with being southern?
Maybe nothing. Consider it bonus information.
I don’t re-fight the War of Northern Aggression. I know what it was about. I know a principal cause was slavery.
I also know it’s not that simple. Read some history. It will do you good.
But I also know that’s not why I like living in and traveling through the south.
I mean if you can’t appreciate the south for places like Nashville, Charleston, Atlanta and New Orleans…among many others…then you need to get out more.
And if you don’t like those places, I won’t ask you what’s wrong with you, I will just gently remind you that I-95 runs both ways.
I don’t mean to be inconsiderate, but I do grow weary of those from elsewhere who believe the south is full of Bible-believing rednecks.
I mean, we are, but we’re actually rather proud of it.
But that’s certainly not everyone, which is why you shouldn’t judge the south by the cover of Gone with the Wind.
In the grand scheme of things, I’d love my writing job to allow me to travel throughout the south to enjoy and report on the culture and the people.
I’d love to have you join me on the veranda for a Julep.