Back to what I was saying….I love music. Good jams that touch me immediately. The genre doesn’t really matter. The tempo can be fast or slow. I don’t care if it is a folk song or an instrumental. Shoot, it can be sung a cappella. As long as I feel it…I love it.
Well after work this evening, I jumped in my car and started it. Immediately I heard Frankie Beverly’s jazzy stylings belting “Southern Girl.” After a quick shout of “That’s my jam,” I turned the radio dial to near blasting. You had to see me to appreciate it. Hangs beating on the steering wheel, swaying back and forth in the driver’s seat and loudly harmonizing with the chorus…I was truly caught up in the tune.
Truly this is a song that must be added to my life soundtrack. I absolutely love it…because handsome melodic Frankie is singing about me. Now I know there are few others out there who think he was describing them…that’s okay. But no female loves being from the South quite like me. I own it. I am truly a southern girl.
Most of my individual traits don’t set me apart from others. Even though I battled acne like most teenage girls and still have occurrences when my diet and health are out of whack, my skin is soft. So what…other females have nice skin, too. Yeah, I have a little junk in my trunk and hips for days. That’s hereditary…I got it from my mama. I can sing, but nothing like Jill, India or Celine. My fashion sense, while stylish, is simply inspired by comfort. But when you add my Southern sensibilities and charm to the mix, you get a powerhouse of a woman.
I often warn people not to hug me too hard, for it might stain their clothes. When they look at me puzzled, I just simply reply that it’s because I sweat lard and that I tinkle and cry sweet tea. LOL…yeah that generally gets a good laugh out of them!
What’s so special about us Southern girls? What would make this Grammy-winning act decide to verse the rest of the world on this cultural phenomenon? Why did Frankie decide to croon about the fine girls south of the Mason Dixon line rather than a lovely from Long Beach or Jersey?
Maybe it has something to do with the way we move about in our daily existence. A true Southern girl would prefer the back road drive to any commute on the interstate. When we are late, we move fast while presenting the illusion of moving at a leisurely, confident pace. Whether melodically blessed or challenged, we are known to burst out in song at any given moment (My girl Hannah is notorious for treating me to her spontaneous concerts during our telephone conversations.). Visits to check on loved ones are rarely planned, but simply because something inside said we needed to hurry and do it. And that sway in our walk is totally in tune with our natural environment.
True Southern girls know no strangers. No, we don’t allow everybody and anybody in our circles, but everyone is initially greeted with a smile. (This used to earn me strange looks from the non-Southern ladies when I first began my collegiate career on the Hill). When we ride through the old neighborhoods, we wave at everyone sitting on the porches…whether we remember them or not. And there’s nothing quite like a “Hello” accented with that Southern twang.
If you were to review the past of any Southern girl, you will find that she spent a lot of time in the company of a significant senior. Whether it was a grandparent, aunt, uncle….Ms. Janie from the old neighborhood…she relished the time in that person’s company. And much of what she is today….her thoughts, beliefs, expressions and mannerisms…can be traced back to the days hanging with that special senior. She always breaks out with a smile every time she remembers or shares about learning to ride a bike or a horse (maybe even a pig…another post on another day my dear friends...LOL). If she knows how to make a mean sweet potato pie, you can bet she learned that from her favorite senior buddy.
And there is something about the way a Southern girl loves. Now, for those non-Southern ladies who might be reading this, please know that this is by no means a criticism of your approach to affection. Southern girls are just taught to be genteel and sweet from the crib. It doesn’t mean that we haven’t known a hard day’s work…that we might be sisters doing it for ourselves; our love is draped in tenderness. It can be seen in the way we rub our honey’s back or arms, the way we blow on ‘lil man’s boo-boo and the way we embrace our sister girl when she has experienced a devastating blow or loss. And to the ladies from other regions of this great land…all you have to do is hang around a few true Southern belles, and you will find yourself carrying on just like them. You couldn’t stop it if you wanted to; it’s intoxicating.
So yes, I am a Southern girl. It’s not arrogance or cockiness that you see in me. It’s confidence. You can resist me all you want, but my Southern charm will soon have you hooked.