Monday, September 25, 2006

Southern sayings

Want some tips on sounding and acting Southern? Here are some excerpts from an e-mail making the rounds, which I also wrote about in today's column. I don't know who wrote it and it leans a bit heavily on stereotypes, but some of the sayings are worth a chuckle:

--All Southerners know exactly when "by and by" is. They might not use the term, but they know the concept well.

--Only a Southerner knows instinctively that the best gesture of solace for a neighbor who’s got trouble is a plate of hot fried chicken and a big bowl of cold potato salad. If the neighbor’s trouble is a real crisis, they also know to add a large banana puddin'.

--Only Southerners grow up knowing the difference between "right near" and "a right far piece." They also know that "just down the road" can be one mile or 20.

--No true Southerner would ever assume that the car with the flashing turn signal is actually going to make a turn.

--A Southerner knows that "fixin" can be used as a noun, a verb, or an adverb.

--Only Southerners make friends while standing in lines ... And when we’re in line, we talk to everybody!

--In the South, y’all is singular .... All y’all is plural.

--Every Southerner knows tomatoes with eggs, bacon, grits, and coffee are perfectly wonderful; that red eye gravy is also a breakfast food; and that fried green tomatoes are not a breakfast food.

--Only true Southerners say "sweet tea" and "sweet milk." Sweet tea indicates the need for sugar and lots of it - we do not like our tea unsweetened. "Sweet milk" means you don’t want buttermilk.

--And a true Southerner knows you don’t scream obscenities at little old ladies who drive 30 MPH on the freeway.
You just say, "Bless her heart"...And go your own way.

--And to those of you who are still having a hard time understanding all this Southern stuff ... Bless your hearts, I hear they are fixin’ to have classes on Southernness as a second language!

--And for those who are not from the South but have lived here for a long time, all y’all need a sign to hang on y’all's front porch that reads "I ain’t from the South, but I got here as fast as I could."


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Being a Southerner myself, I still can laugh at some of our sayings. One of my favorites is "coming up a cloud" for those that don't know, that means that it is "fixin" to rain. I love our Southern idiosyncrasies!

10:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope for the day we totally put aside our differences. No more redneck / yankee crap. I moved here in 1988 from NY and love the city. The hostile environment between North / South is wearisome though.
Y'all and caaar (car) ....who cares ? It's all character that makes up the entire country.
It's all good.

11:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am born and raised here in the south (Huntersville actually). The people I work with are always poking fun at the way I say some things. They always seem to understand though. In some cases I end up being a translator for them. As far as the North vs South thing... if it was that great whereever you are from why did you leave? Dont down me for going to rodeos and bullrides and I wont say anything about you not having a clue what I am talking about. It takes a lot of different kinda of people to make the world go round.

4:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't down you or others like you. You are correct. That's what makes the world go around.
I had a few Southerners move to NY when I was a kid. Everyone got along with them great. But that was 20 years ago. I think people are nastier now a days anywhere you go. It's doesn't matter if you are from the North, South or West Coast.
It's much more cut throat to survive up North that's for sure. Maybe that's why people from the South notice the edginess of Northerners. It's hard to shake. I know., it took me awhile to do it.
As for "why did I leave if it was so great".
I left because it wasn't so great. I love the mass amounts of things to do up North. The cultural amenities are endless. The food is incredible. Not just because it's from "The North" but because it's from everywhere. It's a melting pot for the world so you can sample anything.
But now I rather live a slightly slower pace and just go visit the North from time to time.

6:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leigh, Check your email. I sent you a comment on this yesterday.

11:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

to be a southerner you gotta be racist too .... thats key

9:18 PM  
Blogger Adam Butler said...

I'm pretty sure ya'll is spelled with the apostrophe between the a and l. I may be wrong, though. I've also never heard of sweet milk, but I think I'll start using it.

3:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

adam -
y'all is a contraction of you all and is correctly spelled with the apostrophe between the y and the a

7:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a Southerner and I am not racist.
Racism is everywhere.

12:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm from Gaffney South Carolina ,And I love the people , the food and all the sayings , The air is clean . there is only one place to live and that is the South , And Yankee go home

9:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't get into a peeing contest with a pole cat. You'll both come out stinking.

9:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm close to as Southern as they come. Thing is, two of my best friends aren't Southerners, one's Northern and the other one's Western. I have to explain some of the things I say sometimes, but they love me anyway. One of em didn't know what the eye on the stove was this morning. Neither one of em gets "over yonder." But we don't let the way we talk get in the way of having a good time. Yea, they tease me about dropping every G, but I just tease them back about the stuff they say. Where you come from shouldn't define who you are and who your friends are.

1:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Being born and raised in the deep south, I can say that I have never used y'all in the singular. To do so would make one sound like a hick, bless their hearts!

6:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes i'm from the north and i hate the attitudes up there.Thats what i thought i was getting away i guess i could be somebodys worst nightmare.A yankee with a Uhaul.

10:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm originally from Maryland, and the part I came from was very southern. Anytime a yankee visited he be all wondered about, with our speakin. People in the north are also racist, maybe not as much, but they are. Lot's of yankee's want a be us, that's why they be trying to settle our differences. Well I think the south is the best palce in the world, So if anyone told ya'll Maryland is a yankee state you'd be holler'in like a stuck pig.

10:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm from Georgia, and all my life I thought Maryland southern, so he's right whenit acomes to there speakin'.

10:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was born a raised in Lousiana, my 2 best friends are from Maryland and we talk just da same. as for the yankee's, that's a different story.

10:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(I personally like Marylander's more than Virginians.) I'm from North Carolina and yes i'm racist. I think blacks are getting in high cotton.

11:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm raised from Mississippi, and I think Maryland should have been a part of the confederacy. Maryland is truely southern. We talk the same with our phrases like, "Well shut your mouth, and, much obliged, and also, what have no axe to grind?" stuff like that.

11:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

MARYLAND IS SOUTHERN!!! My best friends are from there, and we are completely 100% all southern.

11:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leigh, I loved this post. Made me laugh & nod.

I've linked to it on a Squidoo lens I made about Southernspeak. Drop by when you have a minute.

2:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

who in the world cares where anyone is from. Judge someone by their Character, not by what state you just HAPPENED to be born in. Some people really need to grow up and get a life.

3:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Be proud of where you're from! I think as a southerner we enjoy reading what we speak because it makes us laugh. Just be proud of your roots, it does matter where you come from.

5:04 PM  
Anonymous Sweet&Southern said...

Everything U mentioned describes my Nanny Jo, My Momma, and My sisters, and SOON-TO-BE ME! That was great ya hear!

3:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was born in Buffalo, NY, but moved to CHarlotte, NC when I was 12 still just a kid. Been down here a good 8 years now. I always loved going to rodeos and playing out in the sticks. I say y'all instead of yous guys, soda instead of pop, and I believe there ain't nothing better on a hot day than a cold glass of sweet tea. My boyfriend is a true country boy born and raised in the South, he drives a big bad Chevy truck with a Rebel Flag in the window we go muddin in, we spend the summertime down at the races and the lake, and 96.9 The Kat is the only thing you hear outta our speakers!! He even calls me his little country girl cause he'd a never guessed I wasn't from round here. So I guess ya'll could say I'm accustomed to the South, I love it here, and don't wanna be anywhere else. Well we fixin to go down to the lake now, so thank ya'll for takin the time to read this. God Bless!!

11:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

so i'm from Ga and loooooooooove it here! i'm your typical southern belle and take more pride in that than anything! to be honest its a privelage to be born and raised here. i love every minute of it!

9:42 PM  
Anonymous Southerner said...

I love the south! My favorite saying ever is “Why don’t you just take a long walk off of a short pier.” Such culture in the south! Here's another list of things we say down here:

7:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am from Arkansas one of the greatest states in the south.Ya'll ready.
A southern girl is a girl who knows full and well that she can open a door for herself but prefers for the gentleman to do it because it demonstrates a sense of respect. After all, every girl wants to be treated like a princess. We know how to make sweet tea and fry chicken while telling you everything about how to rope and ride. We pick our battles and fight with the heart while maintaining grace and elegance. Our mystique is that of a soft-spoken, well mannered southern bell who could direct an army,loves her momma and will always be daddy's little girl.

10:25 PM  

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