You Ain’t From Around Here, Are Ya?

MyTextLife posted on Twitter via text: NASCAR GPS: In fifty feet, turn left. Then left. Then left. Then….

When you look at it chronologically I have spent as much time living in the South as I have in the West but I have never identified myself as a southerner. Nor is it likely the south will ever claim me as a native. Truth be told, I just don’t blend.

The funny thing is that when I lived in Utah, the men just LOVED my southern accent. I couldn’t hear it, (unless I was drinking but THAT is another blog all together). Here in Mississippi the first thing most people ask is, “You ain’t from around here, are ya?” Well, duh.

It could have to do with the fact that I am the antithesis of the sweet southern belle. I am acerbic, political, feministic, highly opinionated and (gasp) a registered Democrat.

For Christmas my beautiful son bought me a tire cover for my Jeep. It was plain black and he offered to have it embroidered with anything I wanted. I looked it at that lovely blank canvas and said, “No thanks. I’m going to use it for bumper stickers. Sort of a mobile Myspace.” He went noticeably pale but as it was a gift and he was raised right, he simply smiled and said, “Okay, mom.”

And thus began my collection. And my obsession.

The first sticker, dead center, was “Curiosity was framed, stupidity killed the cat”. Followed in short order by, “I still believe Anita Hill”, “Come to the dark side, we have cookies!” “What if the Hokey Pokey really IS what it’s all about?” , “Well behaved women rarely make history.” and the jewel in my Yankee crown: “HILLARY 2008”. (Although, out of respect for our insurance premium, I relegated “Paddle faster, I hear banjos!” to my office bulletin board.)

Getting these stickers was not a simple task. Most of the ones I found locally were of the “These colors don’t run” and “Take your kids to Sunday School, they need and deserve it!” variety. I had to order my Hillary 08 bumper sticker from Ohio for gods sake. OHIO.

When my husband realized I was seriously going to put Hillary on my Jeep he freaked out. “Babe, we really can’t afford to have to repaint the Jeep, not to mention replacing the tires.” I put it on anyway. (Nice bonus, both he and my kid quit borrowing my Jeep. Score!)

Not long after, as I was making my twice weekly trek down I-20 to school, an old rust bucket pick-up truck pulls along side of me and the driver gives me the bird. As I was driving at a reasonable rate of speed, had not changed lanes in several miles (thus eliminating the possibility I cut him off) nor had my left blinker going; I have to assume it was my sticker collection that raised his ire. I also have to assume he followed me for several miles to have time to sound out the words.. (Hill… hilla…hillar?..HILLARY! That bitch!)

I wish I had thought to take his picture, but it happened kind of fast. (Plus, I really like my camera and wouldn’t want to risk damaging its delicate sensibilities with such a crude image- but I digress).

So the guy…classic redneck. Porn-star mustache, three days stubble, mullet (seriously? where do you go to get that haircut? Do they charge extra not to laugh while doing it – “Yes sir, business up front, party in the back – no problem.”), dirty wife-beater t-shirt, tore-up pickup truck emblazoned with faded confederate flags and “piss on Chevy” stickers, flipping off random women on the interstate. And he thought I would be upset that we don’t share the same political leanings. Go figure.

~ by D.L. Graves on February 22, 2009.

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