Growing up in the South, by the time you could talk fairly well and listen just a little bit, you could immediately tell another Southerner. The phrases they used, the slow, melodious speech, and the ever present PTA smile gave it away every time! In case you don't know what a PTA smile is, I will explain. A Parent Teacher Association smile is the smile your momma put on when she went to talk to your teachers at the yearly conference or that she wore when she was dealing with a particularly difficult parent during a PTA meeting. That smile speaks VOLUMES! It is a tight smile that spreads across your entire face because you are trying, not completely successfully, to hide your pure distaste for the person you are speaking with.
You know you are Southern when you wake up in the morning and your momma says, "Hey sweet pea. Gimme some sugar." This does NOT mean pass me some sugar! It means give your momma a kiss!
You know you are Southern when the first thought that crosses your mind when someone dies is, "What should I cook to carry to Billy Joe's house?" Followed closely by the the thoughts, "Do I have any velveeta? Do I have a fryer hen cut up? Wonder if Ruth is making the deviled eggs?" Deviled eggs and fried chicken must be present at the home of the deceased's family in every good Southern community and velveeta is a staple for many funeral foods!
You know you are Southern when it is below 50 degrees outside and someone is complaining that, "It's colder than a well-digger's ass in January." We think anything below 70 and sunny requires layers in the South!
You know you are Southern when your daddy tells you, "Honey, it's time for you to fish or cut bait! You simply cannot ride two horses with one butt!" This is usually said when you are undoubtedly having a difficult time making a decision about what is probably the most important thing in your life!
You know you are Southern when your great aunt Edna says, "Well shut my mouth!" after hearing about Pastor Gary having an affair with that tart, Miss Lucy and your little brother, seeing an opportunity to close off great aunt Edna's mouth, runs for the duck tape!!
You know you are Southern when Moon Pies and RC Colas are always close at hand. You are definitely long term Southern if someone has poured a pack of peanuts into the RC Cola!
You know you are Southern when your family parades the crazies that are your kin around in public instead of making excuses for their behavior. "Poor, Eddie. His momma dropped him on his head when he was a baby but we just love him better than our luggage, and he doesn't really mean that you have been whipped with an ugly stick."
You know you are Southern when all the women in your family own white gloves and pearls, have impeccable party manners, and can "Bless Your Heart" with the best of them!
You know you are Southern when the biggest sporting event of the year is the Kentucky Derby! Not to mention, it is a must that the two weeks prior to the Derby be spent partying in style and finding the perfect hat! If you do not own juliep glasses, it is a safe bet you are not Southern. If you don't know what a mint juliep is, it is confirmed that you are not Southern!
You are probably Southern if everything that you can't remember what to call or never actually knew the name of is considered a doohicky.
Last for today, you are Southern if fried chicken is a staple food, gravy is the sauce of choice, biscuits and cornbread are served at every meal, sweet tea is your drink of choice, pimento cheese is the ultimate appetizer, and Sunday dinner is THE event of the week.
I love my Southern roots and love remembering the people that planted them with sayings, stories, and more. I miss their voices in my ear but can still hear them in my heart every minute of every day.