A Post Not about Baby!

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This post from Rocks in My Dryer made me giggle–especially some of the comments! Please scroll down far enough to find BooMama‘s comment on the post. I will have to say I am not quite Southern enough to say “all y’all.” Usually.

My parents are from Ohio, so when I seem clueless about certain Southern sayings or doings, I blame it on being raised by Yankees. I will be the first to confess that I never tried grits, sweet tea, any kind of beans by themselves, or greens until I moved to Nashville four years ago. I’m still not keen on the beans, but bring on the rest of it! My South Carolina-raised hubby won’t even touch greens, and I adore them.

When we were little, we lived in Northern Indiana. When I was 8, my dad was transferred to Richmond, Virginia. I remember so clearly my mom trying to give us a Southern language lesson: “Y’all wanna go down to the rivah?” It took me MANY years of living in Richmond before I succumbed to saying “y’all.” It was simply a matter of pride. I was NOT Southern. But slowly, it crept up on me.

And then we moved to Nashville.

And oh, how I learned Richmond was not the South. Two weeks after moving here I started working at a daycare where I learned everyone was “fixing to” do something and you had your picture “made,” not “taken.” (I still don’t agree with that one, although Mr. V readily points out that neither actually makes sense.) I swore I would never say “fixing to.”

And I try not to. But sometimes it just happens.

Now I try to tone down my accent when I call my parents so they won’t make fun of me. It was especially bad when I worked in customer service, because the nicer I tried to be, the more Southern I got. I think it’s an effective technique. After four years here, I think I’ve developed a decent accent, although it’s not Georgia or Alabama worthy by any means. Many of my friends here still think I talk like a Yankee.

And if you ever catch me saying something is so good it makes you wanna slap your grandma, please just slap me. Hard.

4 thoughts on “A Post Not about Baby!

  1. As a native Tennessean, I have a few more phrases I feel you should add:

    “I’m finer than a frog hair split four ways…now that’s fine.”

    “Well, feed me nails and call me Rusty.”

    “They’re hollerin’ like stuck pigs!”

    “He’s all over him like green on peas.” (very useful during football season)

    I’m trying to integrate these in Austrian language, but I’m not sure if they’re translating real good. (sorry, couldn’t resist)

  2. Great post! My mom is from MN and my dad from south GA. I love grits but hate sweet tea. My dh calls me a half-breed.

    And you are right, there are different sections of the South. I’m from Atlanta, but the ATL is not REMOTELY as Southern as Birmingham. It’s straight up genteel there!

  3. Oh goodness- I have family in Louisiana and by the end of my first day down there I’m saying y’all and droppin my “g” on words. I do love me some biscuits and gravy. And I’m from NW Indiana… wondering where you were from?


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