THE SOUTHERN STATES Recently, visitors to our states have displayed an unusual ignorance = about the basic facts of life in these here parts. In an effort to help = outsiders understand the rural Southerner's mind, it has been decided to = hand the following list to each visitor as they enter a Southern state. 1. That slope-shouldered farm boy did more work before breakfast than = you do all week at the gym. 2. It's called a "gravel road". No matter how slow you drive, you're = going to get dust on your SUV. Drive it or get it out of the way. 3. The red dirt - it's called "clay". Red "clay". If you like the = color, don't wash your car for a couple weeks - it'll be permanent. The = big lumps of it are called "clods". 4. We all started hunting and fishing when we were seven years old. = Yeah, we saw Bambi. We got over it. 5. Any references to "corn fed" when talking about our women will get = you whipped - by our women. 6. Go ahead and bring your $600 Orvis Fly Rod. Don't cry to us if a = flathead breaks it off at the handle. We have a name for those little = 13-inch trout you fish for - we call 'em "bait". 7. Pull your pants up. You look like an idiot. 8. Men, if you want to wear earrings, pierce your nose and whatevers, = and wear your hair long, go right ahead - but if we call you "ma'am", = don't be offended. 9. If that cell phone rings while a bunch of mallards are making = their final approach, we WILL shoot it. You might want to ensure it's = not up to your ear - or even on your person - at the time. 10. That's right, whiskey is only two bucks. We can buy a fifth for = what you paid at the airport for one drink. 11. No, there's no 'Vegetarian Special' on the menu. Order steak. = Order it rare. Or, you can order the Chef's Salad and pick off the two = pounds of ham and turkey. 12. Tea - yeah, we have tea. It comes in a glass over ice and is = sweet. You want it hot - sit it in the sun. You want it unsweetened - = add a lot of water. 13. You bring Coke into my house, it better be brown, wet, and served = over ice. 14. So you have a sixty thousand dollar car. We're real impressed. = We have a quarter-million-dollar combine that we only use two weeks a = year. 15. Let's get this straight. We have one stoplight in town. We stop = when it's red. We may even stop when it's yellow. 16. Our women hunt, fish, and drive trucks - because they want to. = So you're a feminist? You don't say! Ain't that cute? 17. We eat dinner together with our families, we pray before we eat = (yeah, even breakfast), we go to church on Wednesdays and Sundays, we go = to high school football games on Friday nights, we still address our = senior citizens with "yes, sir" and "yes, ma'am", and we sometimes still = take Sunday drives around town to see friends and neighbors. 18. We don't do "hurry up" well. 19. Greens - yeah, we have greens, but you don't putt on them. You = boil them with either salty fatback or a ham hock. 20. Yeah, we eat catfish, bass, bream, and carp, too. You really = want sushi and caviar? They're available at the bait shop. 21. Those are pigs. That's what they smell like. Get over it. = Don't like it? Interstate 65 and 75 goes two ways - Interstates 10, 20 = and 40 go the other two. Pick one. 22. Grits are corn. You put butter, salt, and maybe some pepper on = them. You want to put milk and sugar on them, then you want cream of = wheat. Go to Kansas. That would be I-20 West, then I-35 North. 23. The 'Opener' refers to the first day of deer season or dove = season. Both are holidays. You can get pancakes, cane syrup, and = sausage before daylight at the church on either day. 24. So every person in every pickup waves? Yeah, it's called being = friendly. Understand the concept? 25. Yeah, we have golf courses. Don't hit in the water hazards. It = spooks the fish and bothers the gators - and if you hit it in the rough, = we have these things called Diamondbacks, and they're not baseball = players. 26. That Highway Patrol Officer that just pulled you over for driving = like an idiot - his name is "Sir", no matter how old (or young) he is. = Get smart with him and you WILL regret it. We, on the other hand, will = stop to enjoy it. 27. We have lots of pine trees. They have sap. It drips from them. = You park your SUV under them, and they'll leave a logo on your hood. 28. You burn an American flag in our state, you get beat up. No = questions. The liberal contingent of our state legislature - all 4 of = them - enacted a measure to stop this. There is now a $10 fine for = beating up the flag burner. We will take up collections at church to = pay Bubba's fine, if necessary. Now, enjoy your visit... I emphasize - "visit".