Herbietown - The South, Where Men Can Be Men

The South, Where Men Can Be Men

I have a theory.

I think, in the South, that men can be men.  Real Men.  The kind that go hunting and fishing and watch football and drink beer.  The kind that go on weekend camping trips with their buddies, whenever they damn well feel like it.  The kind that emerge from the womb knowing how to use chainsaws and guns.  The kind that grill out.

What they don’t do is dishes.  Or laundry.  Or diaper-changing.

And how do these men, these Giants, get away with it?

A Southern Man

A Southern Man

I was wondering the same thing.  Then I met some real Southern Men.  They were not what I expected.  Sure they appeared gruff from afar, but up close they talk all syrupy sweet.  That adorable southern twang, thick as honey and sweeter.  That’s the secret.  They get away with all sorts of facial hair and drive pickup trucks and go mudding, and they get away with it because when they come home they talk sweet.

Mmmmm, I could just drink up a manly southern accent, and I would piss lemonade.

In Connecticut, we do the opposite.  We talk with clenched jaws.  We pride ourselves on having no accent whatsoever.  We look down on New Jersey and Long Island and Brooklyn and Massachusetts for their provincial accents.  We can’t even understand people from the South.

We peer over our wire rimmed glasses at the New York Times crossword puzzle.  We remark on education and wine and cheese.  We strive to send our kids to Choate and Deerfield.  We drive BMW’s and Audi’s.

And we Connecticut men prepare salads and do dishes and change diapers and wash clothes.  We stay home on weekends and ferry our kids to birthday parties.  We rarely hunt or golf or ski.  We sacrifice our very manhood on the altar of Yankee superiority.

What good has it done us?

I’m not saying I want to go back to the days of gender segregation.  Far from it.  I look down on unliberated men with scorn and derision.  I enjoy an equal partnership with my wife, and even if I wanted to revert to something more antiquated, anyone that knows her knows that I wouldn’t have a prayer.

But still.  I can’t help but wonder if she’ll let me have cable TV once we move to the South.  Will she bring me beers when I ask her?  Will I be allowed to upgrade my Subaru wagon to a truck, now that I’ll be spending so much more time in it?  Will I be able to go off hunting or golfing on Saturdays while she tends to the children?

I’ll try my best to talk Southern.  I really will.  In fact, I’ve already started to use y’all instead of you.  It’s far superior to have a plural you, like Ustedes in Spanish.  I just need to slow down my speech, smile more, and work on a few tweaks to my vowels.  Perhaps there are some expressions I could add to my vernacular, like “reckon.”

I promise I’ll work on it.

Will that help?

How many more stereotyping posts can I get away with before I get run out of the South?  Bets?