20050416

it ain't headin' up no more...

maybe it's that i haven't lived in the south for very long, maybe i need to loosen up or some such nonsense, but 'southern speak' is so very strange to me... it always amazes me how most incredibly intelligent people can sound so very ignorant when speaking 'southern.' one of my very close friends, probably the most intelligent person i have ever encountered in my lifetime - during a very theoretical conversation - said that he 'didn't reckon that [something] was true'... it just really baffled me how i had never ever expected that phrase to come from his mouth... reckon...

mind you, i am from the south - born in texas and whatnot - but the only real southern expressions i use are mam, sir, and [on occasion] y'all. ain't, double negatives, reckon, 'figur' [figure], j'eet yet? [have you eaten yet?], 'moungry' [i'm hungry], 'fixin' tuh' [about to], etc. haven't really found their way into my vocabulary as of the present moment and will hopefully take the subtle hint that they are not invited into my vocabulary any time soon...

i have no qualms with people who speak 'southern' - as a matter of fact, most of my very closest friends and family are so southern that it could be said that they speak an entirely different language - i just find that 'southern' doesn't really facilitate my manner of expression very well...

i have no idea where i was going with this at all... but i've spent the last hour or so contemplating the oddity of 'southern speak' and how it tends to just pop up out of nowhere, like daisies in the snow... at least 'southern' isn't irritating... just ever so wonderfully amusing - like mullets [another southern phenomenon]... they never fail to bring a smile to my face.

2 comments:

Murrye said...

I'm with you on that. I'm originally form louisiana, which may be one of the most "southern" states, but when we moved to arkansas i guess it made me really aware of regional differences in slag. i thought 'fixin to' was hilarious and never picked it up. in 11th grade i made a conscious effort to eliminate 'ya'll' from my vocabulary.
now i love a good southern analogy and a few choice expressions, but i could do without a lot of the butchering of the english language.

Bobby said...

There’s that, and their tendency to stare at you – you know? It seems like when you’re in a rural town, a southern town – and you’re not from there – it seems like they stare at you a little bit longer than is comfortable to a person from a bigger urban area. It’s like they are straining their brain to recognize you, and then, when they realize that they don’t know you, they just fall into a dazed curiosity about you – your newness to them.