I love accents. No, not those things you hang on walls or set on shelves, I’m talking about how we talk. The South may be blessed or cursed, depending on your view with high humidity, sweet tea and for the most part, manners.We generally say yes ma’am, no sir and thank you when needed. We are a friendly bunch and we use buggies to shop with.
We took a trip to Virginia a few years ago and had a great time. A bunch of friendly folk in White Oak VA, near Fredricksburg. I know that Virginia was on the side of the Confederates but they didn’t know what fired green tomatoes or hushpuppies were. They do now. And at the local 7-11, they couldn’t understand me. I thought it was funny they didn’t understand a Southern accent, them being from the South and all. To be fair to the White Oakers there, they are around 50 miles or so from Washington DC. So they may have been infiltrated by Yankees.
Anyway, here are a few Southernisms floating around on the net that I thought were fairly spot on.
Only true Southerners grow up knowing the difference between “right near” and “a right far (pronounced “fur”) piece.” They also know that “just down the road” can be 1 mile or 20.
Only a true Southerner knows exactly how long “directly” is - as in: “Going to town, be back directly.” (generally pronounced dreckly).
Only a true Southerner can show or point out to you the general direction of “yonder.”
Only a true Southerner knows how much any fish, collard greens, turnip greens, peas, beans, etc. make up “a mess” (as in “a mess” of greens).
Only a true Southerner knows that the term “booger” can be a resident of the nose, a descriptive, as in “that ole booger,” a first name, or something that jumps out at you in the dark and scares you senseless.
Put 100 true Southerners in a room and half of them will discover they’re related, even if only by marriage.
Every true Southerner knows tomatoes with eggs, bacon, grits, and coffee are perfectly wonderful; that redeye gravy is also a breakfast food; and that fried green tomatoes are not a breakfast food We recognize milk gravy when we see it, know what to do with it and wonder what the heck you other people eat on your biscuits.
A true Southerner knows you don’t scream obscenities at little old ladies who drive 30 MPH on the highway. You just say, “Bless her heart” and go your own way.
Only true Southerners say “sweet tea” and “sweet milk.” Sweet tea indicates it contains sugar and lots of it - we do not like our tea unsweetened “Sweet milk” means you don’t want buttermilk.