Friday, February 29, 2008

Regional stereotyping

A contributor has passed on one of those regional stereotype emails he'd just gotten from a colleague. It's about the South, with the predictable heavy focus on language. A couple of samples:
  • Southern women know their cities dripping with Southern charm:
    • Chawl'stn
    • S'vanah
    • Foat Wuth
    • N'awlins
    • Addlanna
  • A Southerner knows that "fixin" can be used as a noun, a verb, or an adverb.
  • In the South, y'all is singular, all y'all is plural.
As the person who passed it along said:
Calling fixin' an adverb is just people not understanding lexical categories, I imagine, and I know fixins as a noun, but not usually a fixin'. A shame they missed what's distinct about the southern verb. And singular y'all exists, but isn't common. I don't think of it as common in r-less regions and this person is putting on the r-less airs in a big way.
The thing closes with useful advice, at any rate:
  • And to those of you [note continuity error: should be all y'all] 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'alls front porch that reads "I ain't from the South , but I got here as fast as I could."
By the way, that's Florence, Kentucky, not any of the ones in South Carolina, Alabama, Arkansas, leaving aside the ones that aren't clearly outside of y'all territory.

3 comments:

pc said...

Ha. Yer pic reminds me of a John Prine song...
By a fountain back in Rome I fell in love with you
In a small cafe in Athens You said you loved me too
And it was April in Paris when I first held you close to me
Rome, Georgia, Athens, Texas And Paris, Tennessee

Cassaday Rasmussen said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Mr. Verb said...

Yeah, that's a great song, PC -- like about a zillion of his. And Cassaday, I'll pass the wishes on to the relevant contributor!