Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Yankee? Lessons on Moving South

1. When you move to the South from the North you're going to hear and see some strange and perhaps even offensive things. Grow a tolerance for difference. 

2. Only people in the North believe Texas is in the South.

3. There are many Souths in the South. Learn the difference between Georgia and Mississippi and you're on your way to a much more pleasant experience.

4. Not all things that look alike are alike. For example, in Texas cowboy boots and a cowboy hat are for work, but in Tennessee they are for style.

5. They're going to call you Yankee. It doesn't matter if you've never thought of yourself in that way. If you must correct them, do it in a self deprecating and funny way, like you don't really mean it. But it's probably best just to let it pass because you run the risk of offending their entire sense of history. 

6. They will know in much greater detail the history of the Civil War than you do.

7. About 30% of their knowledge of the Civil War is incorrect or biased, but because you don't know anything about the Civil War, you won't know what they are wrong about. Either read up on the Civil War or let it go.

8. The pop versus soda versus Coke debate is not one worth having, but if you do have it, enter into it in a self-deprecating way such that you do not appear to be coming across as superior. They already think you think you're better than they are, so no sense in proving them right. 

9. If you think you have nothing to learn from someone from the South you are every bit the fool they think you are.

10. . Don't let your longing for home degrade into comparisons of how much better home is than this place. Just long for home and visit there when you can.

11. When you start hearing how the SEC conference is a better football conference than your football conference, just smile and nod and let it go. It is useless to offend another person's religion. Plus, boasting about your pro team when the topic is college football is like sneezing in the pudding. 

12. There is beauty in every place and there is worth in every person. If you spend your time looking for those things you'll have spent your time well.

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