Southern Style


Good Stuff From The South

All the really good stuff – food, music and women – is from the South Ed Williams You ever had something you wanted to say that comes straight from the heart? Something that you know without question to be true, and something that you feel the need to say out loud? Well, that’s the kind of feeling I have today, a deep down need to say something that needs to be said, something that lots of us know to be true, and so, here and now, I’m going to say with pride: "All the really good stuff comes from the South." It’s true, you know, all the really good stuff does comes from the South. I’m not saying it to brag, gloat or to put down other regions of the country. I’m just stating what seems to me to be patently obvious. And I’m not even talking about some of our good stuff like the weather, azaleas, dogwood trees, Jack Daniels, boiled peanuts and the like. I’m just saying in general that most of the really good things that we love as a nation come from the South. Think not? Well, just check out the following: The very best music comes from the South. Just the fact that Elvis was a Southerner says all I need to say, but you can also add in Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Hank Williams Sr., Hank Williams Jr., B. B. King, George Jones, James Brown, the Allman Brothers Band, John Lee Hooker, Grandpa Jones, Johnny Cash, Buddy Holly, the Atlanta Rhythm Section, and so many other great Southern musical talents that it would take pages to list them all. Southern music can make you tap your feet, kiss a pretty girl, pat your favorite dog, and can even cause you to…

Never Feeling Full

Never feeling full is root of unhappiness Fri, Nov. 26, 2004 By golly, by the time this is in print, I’m hoping to have ingested a few delicious Thanksgiving calories. How about you? Feeling full? Did you carve the ol’ turkey, slosh the gravy on the dressing, pack in the potatoes, sweet and mashed? How about that green bean casserole and all the other trimmings? Did the pie have pecans, buttermilk, pumpkin or sweet potato filling? Is your Thanksgiving "well" full or are you feeling a bit drained? It’s ironic but did you know that sometimes we eat and we eat and even though we’re stuffed, we go back for more. We just can’t seem to get satisfied. Weird, huh? There’s a scripture that has always fascinated me because like most scripture it speaks to me, screaming my name. It comes from the book of Haggai, the first chapter: "Now this is what the Lord Almighty says: "Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it." My mama used to talk to me about money burning holes in my purse. Mamas are usually right on target. I’m seeing it in myself and others more and more. It’s that "more and more" thing. Everything has to be bigger and better, "little" doesn’t satisfy and thankful doesn’t apply. Maybe it’s because the search has been in the wrong direction. I kind of got the picture the other day when I was greeted with, "Guess what the dog ate today." Y’all he had himself a helping of the brand new 2004 Southern Living…

Holiday Gift Giving

Holiday gift giving need not be costly or chaotic Here are 15 ideas for when you want to give your best November 18, 2004 Holiday gift giving seems to get more complicated each year. Many go to great lengths to find special or unusual presents. But responsible gift giving need not be costly or chaotic. As a holiday present to you, your finances and the environment, here’s a list of all-occasion gift ideas to help you have a harmonious holiday season and peacefully welcome the new year. Commit to the community. Enroll that special person in a class or workshop for people who have "always wanted to learn how to…." Encourage friends and family to continue learning with a museum, nature center, national park, nonprofit organization or civic club membership. Support local art and recreation by giving tickets to theater, ballet, music, movie or sporting events. Choose gift certificates for restaurants or services, including oil changes and tire balancing to keep cars running efficiently. Contribute in a loved one’s honor to a local charity, such as a library, community group, local environmental group, food bank, battered women’s shelter or homeless shelter. Call local churches, synagogues and charitable organizations for ideas. Reconnect with family and friends. Create certificates redeemable for help with chores or volunteer work: babysitting, pet-sitting, raking, weeding, preparing meals or larger chores such as cleaning out a garage or attic. Find ready-to-print certificates on-line here: www.moea.state.mn.us/campaign/download/coupons.pdf. Share your own talents by making crafts or food or teaching family and friends a skill in which you excel. Make a weekly or monthly "date" with someone to improve yourselves together (doing volunteer work, hiking, taking a class) while you support your community. Treat someone to a special activity you both can share, such as a candlelight dinner, nature hike or…

Respect And Pride

Respect and pride ride with funeral processions Fri, Nov 19, 2004 The line of traffic edged along painfully slow and I, in a hurry as always, tapped the steering wheel anxiously and craned my neck to see what the holdup was. When finally I figured it out, I relaxed and settled back in the seat. Like the faithful Southerner I am, I considered it my duty to be a reverent participant in the event. Warmth and pride trickled steadily across my body as I glanced to the other side of the highway to see the multitude of cars that had pulled over while their drivers interrupted their travel and busy schedules to pay respect to someone that, in all likelihood, they had never known. Pulling over for funeral processions is a purely Southern tradition. Other regions don’t do it, nor, as far as I can tell, do they want to do it. It is the one cultural tradition I have found myself explaining over and over to transplants who are puzzled and, in several instances, irritated by it. "It is ridiculous!" I recall one hot-tempered young woman saying as she stormed in late to a meeting. She had been born and raised in another region then moved to the South when her parents decided to retire to the coastal area. I and the other Southerners attempted to proudly explain the respect and courtesy that goes with the gesture. She poked her lower lip out and rolled her eyes. Someone pointed out that when she died, she would be given the same pomp and circumstance. "Oh puh-leaze!" She flung her arms upward. "Don’t bother! I wouldn’t want to be the reason that someone else is late for a meeting. I’m more considerate than that." I folded my arms, tilted my head…

Waving

Waving at Strangers 19 Sep On my first date with Geoff, after dining at a former brothel and before my favorite jug band hit the stage at Sunset Tavern, we had time for a stroll along Ballard Ave. As we passed the window of a restaurant, we noticed a group of about 8 to 10 people waving at us most enthusiastically. I didn’t recognize anyone, nor did he, and eight years later we still haven’t a clue what that was about. Of course, had said incident occurred in the South, I most likely wouldn’t have given it a second thought. Ok, perhaps a second, possibly a third, but definitely not a 37th (Who WERE those people? Oops! Make that 38th). Unlike eating tofu, waving is just one of those things Southerners do. It’s like we breeze through the “Wave bye-bye to mommy” stage and master “Wave hello to that guy mowing his lawn” before we can even walk. I haven’t studied any data on the subject, but I believe the frequency of waving depends on the size of the town. The smaller the population, the greater one’s likelihood of becoming a wave-ee. I’m not even counting: • Waves of recognition from folks you know (because they usually skip right on past waving or handshakes and go straight for the hug). • Waves from automobiles to indicate A. “Thanks for letting me in your lane, kind driver” or B. “Oops! Sorry, I’m a dumbass, not an asshole.” (Like when you almost plow into a pedestrian–theoretically, of course). • Beauty Queen-style waves from parade floats. (There’s a mnemonic device for this, which starts with “Screw in a lightbulb, touch the pearls…” Sadly, I’ve forgotten the rest. Can anybody help me out?) • Waves from anyone dressed as food, wearing a sandwich board,…

Pride In Their Crown

Southern women take pride in their crown Fri, Oct 15, 2004 It’s one of the darndest things I’ve ever heard of or seen. But it happened. James Todd, a handsome doctorate candidate from the University of California at Berkley, applied for and received a large grant to study the culture of NASCAR. Having worked in NASCAR for almost a decade, I could have saved him the trouble and tens of thousands of dollars by explaining the NASCAR culture — southern good ol’ boys, fast cars, condescending outsiders, every kind of beer known to man and pit lizards who wear tops too tight and chase the drivers, mechanics, pit crews, truck drivers and whoever has authority over garage passes. It’s a brilliantly simple-minded culture. Very rich but simple. But he didn’t ask me so he made his way South with a very used camper and trailed the series for an entire season, spending his nights in the infield. That, in itself, had to be an eye opening experience for a Berkley man. I met James through my friend, Deb Williams, who was the first female reporter to receive a garage pass back in the late ’70s. Immediately, I developed an affinity for him and not just because he looks like a young version of the heartthrob model, Fabio. The guy is neat with lots of personality and sincerity. It was also a lot of fun to see my beloved people through his curious eyes. At a Motorsports Hall of Fame induction in Talladega, we chatted at the reception. Surrounded by the NASCAR culture in all of its black-tied wonderment, I asked what he had learned so far. "Well, one thing I learned," he began with a sly grin spreading across his face, "is that you southern women have this thing about…

Good Ol’ Boys

‘Good ol’ boys’ love their mamas, trucks and TVs By Ronda Rich Dixie Divas An e-mail arrived the other day from a sophisticated Yankee who needed advice. "I came South and fell in love with a redneck. Please tell me how to win his heart," she wrote. I needed clarification. I’m always suspicious when Yankees talk about rednecks because they’re bad to clump all Southerners into that category. "Is he a redneck or is he a good ol’ boy?" I asked in a reply e-mail. "There’s a difference." Further investigation revealed he was, instead, a good ol’ boy. That established, I had plenty of advice. So, here’s some wisdom about good ol’ boys that every woman should know, particularly the young ones who should learn it now rather than find out the hard way: Good ol’ boys love their mamas. They always are in search of a woman just like her. Their mamas also are in search of a woman just like themselves, but the sons are more likely to find her than the mamas are. It is OK to come between him and his mama, though both will protest mightily. If it becomes too much of fight, quote the Scripture, "A man should leave his mother and cleave only to his wife." Throwing Scripture at a Southern woman is akin to throwing kryptonite at Superman. She melts to a puddle of nonresistance. While it is permissible, even advisable, to come between a good ol’ boy and his mama, there are things from which you must never separate him: His pickup truck, his recliner or his television and its remote. I once knew a recliner, old and ugly as homemade sin, as the old folks say, that became the major bargaining chip in a divorce. It worked. She got the…

Wearing Your Sunday Best

Whatever happened to wearing your Sunday’s best? Fri, Oct 8, 2004 Whatever happened to Sunday clothes? Whatever happened to dresses and suits reserved exclusively for church, funerals and weddings? Clothes that didn’t do double duty for a cookout or a bowling tournament? I wish I had a dollar for every Sunday in my youth when the first words out of my mama’s mouth as we walked in the door were, "Go take your church clothes off so you can help me in the kitchen with dinner." I didn’t wear my Sunday clothes to school and I didn’t wear my school clothes to church. I most certainly did not wear the jeans I wore to a Friday night football game or the sandals I flip flopped around in at the creek. I was taught to save my best for the Lord’s house and to always enter it dressed with respect. I still do. I have never darkened the door of a church or a funeral home dressed in slacks. I always go attired in the best clothes I have. I have black dresses for summer funerals and suits for winter ones. I know that I am old-fashion but this is what feels right for me. Today, Sunday mornings are no different than they were when my mama and daddy kept a stringent eye over what I wore. I still carefully select my outfit, press it, wash my hair, do my makeup, find a pair of pantyhose that is the right shade, match my high heels, purse and jewelry. Last thing before I leave, I tilt the cherry full length mirror in my bedroom and give the outfit one last going over to check for sagging hems, loose threads and the such. Once, I was running late and didn’t do that since…

Can The South Survive?

Can the South Survive? by Charlie Reese It was often said that the South would rise again, but a more appropriate question for today is, "Can the South survive as a distinct region and culture?" I’m not sure it can because of the vast migration of Yankees. Now, having been forced by circumstances to experience a couple of Northern winters, I certainly don’t blame anyone who decides there are better things to do with one’s leisure time than wrap pipes, shovel snow and chip ice off the windshield. The South is a beautiful place, and I was not only born in the South, but have chosen all my life never to live anywhere else voluntarily. I can also sympathize with people who don’t like fried chicken, grits, corn bread and collard and turnip greens, as I myself have a strong dislike of rhubarb, beets, boiled potatoes and boiled meat. A Philly cheese steak is a poor substitute for barbecue beef or pork. Scotch is no match for bourbon. Broiled cod doesn’t come close to fried mullet or catfish. And golf, as recreation, pales in comparison with fishing and hunting. There are so many Yankees living in the South today that Jeff Foxworthy is going to have to change his comedy routine. At least in Florida, most of the trailers are occupied by Yankees, not rednecks. He’ll have to start saying, "You might be a Yankee if your house has wheels." All I say to our Yankee residents is enjoy yourself, but don’t try to change us Southerners. We love our guns, always have and always will. As someone has pointed out, the protection racket never has gained a foothold in the South because a Southern shopkeeper will always have a gun handy and much prefer to deal in lead than…

Special Occasions

Special occasions don’t have to be planned ahead By Ronda Rich Dixie Divas I never knew my friend’s Aunt Elsie, but still this woman, a stranger to me, will never be forgotten by me. Though I never saw her face or heard her voice, the parable she authored always will be vivid and deeply ingrained in my mind. Aunt Elsie died recently, having lived to be 81. Her grandest adventure happened more than 30 years ago when she had gone to see a cousin in Memphis. They visited Graceland, had tea at the Peabody Hotel and shopped at the city’s finest store. Passing by the lingerie department, Aunt Elsie saw something that took her breath away: A long, flowing white peignoir set trimmed in matching lace and ribbons. It looked like something that Grace Kelly would have worn in a movie. Aunt Elsie was, according to her niece, a good Methodist woman who taught Sunday school and regularly baked goodwill cakes. She was a plain, salt-of-the-earth woman who preferred sensible shoes, support stockings and flannel gowns. But that fancy negligee caught her eye and, in a moment of unexplained weakness, she bought it. For the rest of her life, she adored that gown, which she stored in a cedar chest at the foot of her bed. But she never wore it. Never took the tags off. Instead, she spent the next 30 years saving it for a "special occasion." Sometimes, when she was feeling blue, she took the gown out of the cedar chest to admire it. When she died, her daughter realized that her mama had one last chance to wear her beloved peignoir set. That’s how Aunt Elsie, the practical Methodist, came to be buried in a white chiffon gown and robe fit for a Hollywood queen and…

Author Has New Book

Author has a new book out Thursday, April 14, 2005 By CASANDRA ANDREWS Staff Reporter Southerners, author Deborah Ford worries, may be losing touch with their roots. These roots have more to do with the quiet decline of regional traditions than with the lack of Miss Clairol touch-ups over the bathroom sink. Though, to be sure, both situations can be vexing. "I just feel like we are moving too quickly and we aren’t taking our time to do the things that are really important, like Sundays together," Ford said. So, the author of the best-selling "GRITS Guide to Life," decided to take action, penning a primer on how folks from below the Mason-Dixon line put on the dog — or parties — big and small. "People, I think, look to Southerners for our sense of home and sense of place," she said. "You come down South and you know you are going to get a lot of hospitality. I think the South is a comfort zone." A former school teacher from Birmingham, Ford may be best known for transforming the acronym GRITS — for Girls Raised in the South — into a multi-million dollar merchandising business. She still sells T-shirts and caps on her Web site www.GritsInc.com. The mother and entrepreneur continues expanding the brand, looking to share her own Southern heritage with those who weren’t born under a blooming magnolia or near a bramble of honeysuckle. And why shouldn’t she? Girls raised in the South and anywhere else should know the difference between a high-falutin’ affair where heavy hors d’ouvres will be served and a hootenanny where flip flops are optional. One requires pearls and the other a proper pedicure, thank you. "Puttin’ on the Grits" includes discussions on how to be the kind of guest who gets invited…

Those Who Teach

Those who teach make it easier for all of us Fri, Oct 1, 2004 Every decent diva, southern or not, has at least one good mentor. I have a few but the most powerful one, the one who throws her full heart into instructing me in the ways of proper southern womanhood is a tiny spitfire of a woman with hair the color of hot flames and huge, expressive green eyes the color of a tall southern pine. Her age is known to few but she’s a bit over 45, which gives her plenty of years of experience to draw from and wisdom that spouts constantly from her lacquered lips. Virgie now lives in Carson City, Nev., a place she discovered by way of Pascagoula, Miss., which is where the most perfect southern woman I have ever met was born and properly raised. Carson City is a bit of an odd place for southern perfection personified but Virgie, who devotedly followed her husband, Bill, there, is spreading southern graciousness and hospitality throughout the western town. It is working because her name is spoken in hallowed tones of admiration. This I know because every December I fly out for the weekend to attend a black tie event she hosts in her beautifully appointed home. Her guests are awed by her oozing charm, bountiful food (most of which she proudly prepares herself) and the little silver bell she daintily jingles to signify that dinner is being served. It is safe to say that Carson City has never seen anything remotely like this Mississippi whirlwind, which has captivated this place in the foothills of the Sierras. In the tradition of true southerners, especially those born in Mississippi, Virgie is a storyteller of incomparable skill. I save all correspondence that I receive but Virgie’s…

Southern Belles Still Around

Southern belles are still around in Chilton By Julie Davis There is just something special about young ladies and women raised in the south and especially in Chilton County. Each week The Clanton Advertiser is adorned by lovely Chilton County ladies, who win pageants, play a sport for their high school, and are members of local organizations, mothers and leaders. I don’t know if it is the glowing skin from years in the sun at the river or just the extra special care parents give their daughters, like the care a peach farmer gives to his prize winning peaches, that makes a southern belle. Maybe it’s in the water. Whatever it is, I think it’s a dying way of life or idea, and it is crucial that we as southerners preserve the true essence of a great southern woman that can only truly be found right here in our great county. Although the South has risen, fallen and been harshly criticized, women of all ethnic backgrounds and races still possess a certain charm and presence in a room unlike a lady from anywhere else. It’s not just a southern drawl either. My grandmother is a true lady and I hope I can continue through life as gracefully as she has, leaving a good impression on everyone I come across. I am sure it won’t be easy, because I am awfully outspoken. She always puts other people before herself, but manages to make it look effortless. I have never seen my grandmother loose her temper with anyone, and I have never heard her say an unkind word about anyone. The other thing that amazes me is that she always looks beautiful and pulled together no matter what she is doing. My mother had a great example growing up and so have…

Resisting The Modern World

Southern belle resists the advances of a modern world By Pat MacEnulty Special Correspondent Posted October 3 2004 The Garden Angel. Mindy Friddle. St. Martin’s Press. $23.95. 290 pp. The Southern novel is still alive and kicking, thank heavens, and Mindy Friddle gives the genre its due in The Garden Angel. The story concerns two women who become unlikely friends and discover that by pooling their disparate talents, they may ultimately prevail. Like most Southern writers, Friddle doesn’t worry much about plot. Instead she immerses her readers in the hopes and fears of her characters and then lets life do its messy business. A small Southern town, of course, is the quintessential setting. The main character is Cutter Johanson, a young woman whose great-grandfather established the Sans Souci town mill in the 1800s and founded most of the businesses of the town, a satellite to a larger city. Friddle describes the modern-day Sans Souci as "a city-swallowed town. The shopping malls and 7-Elevens, billboards and neon signs, reached for us. The city of Palmetto lapped at the shore of our home." This encroachment of modern life leads to Cutter’s greatest fear: the impending sale of her ancestral home, "coquettish and tattered" with an overgrown family cemetery in the back yard and a basement full of her deceased grandmother’s canned fruits and vegetables. Fittingly, Cutter herself possesses a host of peculiarities. She wears her dead mother’s once fashionable clothes, unwittingly fitting in with the "retro" crowd. She’s got smarts, but she foregoes college in order to work two jobs–one of them as a waitress at the Pancake Palace and the other, writing obituaries for the Sans Souci newspaper–all so she can save her house. Unfortunately for Cutter, her sister and brother don’t give a hoot about their heritage and want to…

South’s Impact Grows

South’s influence grows, has impact across nation By Ronda Rich Dixie divas A reporter from a prominent newspaper in Washington called for an interview because he was doing an article on the sudden hip-ness of the word "y’all." Southern hip-hoppers, it turns out, have introduced the word into the slang vocabulary of the world’s hippest trendsetters. It’s now cool, or hot, however you wish to look at it, to liberally sprinkle "y’all" throughout all conversation. Isn’t it nice to know that, if you stay true to your roots, you eventually will be christened trendy by kids in baggy britches? In the course of the interview, the reporter asked, "Is America being Southernized or is the South being Americanized?" Good question. This, of course, underscores what Southerners have always distinctly felt: That we are a nation within a nation and that we firmly command our domain while forcing our influence onto the rest of the country. There is power in numbers, so the 14 states which are considered Southern by demographers account for a substantial portion of the nation’s population. That is why, for the last few decades, a presidential ticket is considered incurably crippled without a Southern candidate. In his book, "Dixie Rising," Peter Applebome of the New York Times, reported that if the 11 states that fought on the side of the Confederacy were broken away from the rest of America, you would have the world’s fourth largest economic power. This isn’t surprising because Southerners, even when they’re knocked down such as in the case of textile mills closing, know how to hang on and ingeniously turn the situation around. Industrious Southerners don’t stand still and let kudzu cover them. As things go in today’s world, the answer to the question is no longer black and white, though it…

Backyard Is Just The Spot

Back yard is just the spot By Jane Clute, The Herald (Published September 28‚ 2004) With weather like we’ve had this past week, who wouldn’t want to be out in the yard working? Well, maybe some golfers we know. Unfortunately some folks can’t garden like they want to. Age, health problems, a bum knee, bad back — whatever — limit their abilities. Which is why I was especially interested in seeing an arthritic friend’s garden the other day. Pretty amazing, I’d say. Clearly she loves her yard; always has. You sense that the moment you arrive: lovely plantings and a big bird bath as a focal point, flower pots spilling with blooms at the front door and an arched gateway beckoning you toward the back yard. She and her husband are in a patio home now with a small yard that’s a lot easier for them to manage, since they have more than their share of health problems. But their previous home came with two acres and plenty of dirt for planting and play — things she particularly enjoyed and wanted to continue, although her husband was itching for a condo. This time around, the front yard is managed by the neighborhood association. The back is the owners’ responsibility, and the wife has taken that job seriously. They’re blessed with a beautiful brick wall for privacy and a welcome backdrop for all her plantings. Right off they planted two stunning, unusual trees I don’t remember seeing around here before. Japanese Cryptomeria, she says. Strong, sturdy, glossy evergreens with graceful foliage that remind me a bit of Norfolk Island Pines but fuller and even prettier. And obviously loving our climate. Definitely worth considering. According to the Clemson Extension Service, these trees are "splendid evergreens" that are excellent for the Southeast and…

Out Of Food?

Running out of food is no option in the South By Ronda Rich Dixie divas In the South, particularly to our women, food is more than a mere means to survival. It is a strong means toward our identity and the anchor that firmly secures our renowned hospitality. There are some of us who believe that the fluffiness of our biscuits is as important to signifying who we are as is the grandness of our hair. That, of course, is saying a lot. I believe I always have known this on some deep, hidden level. But, as is most things in our Southern culture, it was such an innate part of our women that I never had taken time to fully digest it mentally. Then on the occasion of a recent soiree at my house, I found myself thoughtfully chewing on this delicious piece of Southern womanhood. I invited the divas over for an afternoon pajama party. My friend, Kim, a talented designer, had completed a makeover of my bedroom. She had been begging to do it, so, finally I said, "Go to it. Just don’t bother me to make any decisions." The result was stunning so I threw a party to celebrate and firmly instructed the divas that all were to wear pajamas or gowns and robes. Mama agonized for weeks over which was her prettiest gown. For two weeks prior to the soiree, each time I was at her house, she would pull out another set from the cedar chest and say, "What about this one?" So, the divas gathered in my bedroom for the party and everyone looked nocturnally lovely, including Dixie Dew, my dachshund, who was adorable in a pair of Noah’s Ark jammies. Of course, this called for food. Like all Southern women I know,…

State Of Mind

State of Mind Out-of-state students find themselves relocated geographically, culturally Teresa Wood, Cavalier Daily Staff Writer On an average day wandering around Grounds, a student could be overwhelmed trying to count all of the popped collars, pearls and number of times someone says "y’all." For many out-of-state first years, these common sights and sayings around the University come as an enormous culture shock. Depending on their city of origin, some students feel right at home here in Charlottesville, while others are left wondering if all those guys know their collars are flipped up like that. "There are many colloquialisms here that I wasn’t familiar with before I arrived," first-year College student and Floridian Kat Trautman said. "I had never heard of ‘popping your collar,’ and pink polo shirts are something of a mystery to me." Indeed there are things that may take some getting used to, but college is all about new experiences, right? Meeting new people, getting different perspectives, learning about diverse lifestyles — all college students, no matter what part of the country they are from, are subjected to that. Yet when many out-of-staters arrive on Grounds, they find themselves immersed in a completely foreign atmosphere. Most in-staters can name at least a couple of high school buddies who are also attending the University, not to mention the fact that they are never more than a few hours from home. The non-Virginians, on the other hand, are not only faced with the challenge of adjusting to a collegiate lifestyle, but also that of acclimating themselves to an unfamiliar environment far from their families. "Every out-of-stater has the ‘It seems like everyone is from Virginia’ problem,’" said second-year College student Dave Hondula, originally from New Jersey. The difference in numbers of in-state and out-of-state students is quite evident, which…

Mama’s Legacy

Mama T’s legacy is Lucy the Southern Lady By Lucy Adams Life’s Little Lessons My Grandmother, God rest her soul, defined herself a southern lady. I really should capitalize the "S" in southern and "L" in lady, because she’ll roll over in her grave when she finds that I didn’t. We called her Mama T, and she could recite her heritage back to the American Revolution, or to Adam and Eve, depending on the patience of the listener. I lacked the fortitude to sit through one of her lectures on lineage. What did capture my attention, however, were Mama T’s unspoken, but vigorously adhered to, rules of ladylike behavior. For example, a lady might smoke. And she definitely knows how to walk with just the right amount of swing in her hips. But she never, ever smokes and walks. According to my grandmother, "that’s common." I, conversely, think it’s because running out of breath strolling to the grocery store entrance, and hacking like a lung will rupture, detracts from your aura. A southern lady, too, must willingly suffer for beauty. If you have ever worn a pair of shoes, that bore holes through your feet, for the sake of looking "put together," or had your mother pull your tresses into a bun so tightly that it felt like your brain might burst through your hair follicles, then I need not explain. A belle knows her fashion. Mama T kept her white shoes tucked safely in the closet from the Tuesday following Labor Day until Easter; whether Easter came in mid-March or not until a sweltering Sunday in April. And the Holiest of days did not pass without her togged up in those white shoes, and a hat, even if the temperature dropped to 28 degrees, and it snowed. She put…