[lit-ideas] Viewing North Carolina, America from the Baltic

  • From: Lionpainter <lionpainter@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 14 Nov 2015 14:00:00 -0500

(For the observer of America versus the Baltic, and any others.)


This is my first time joining in. I have silently read the posts for years, and
enjoyed the conversations. Thanks to all for sharing your thoughts and opinions.

Here are some tidbits from the point of view of the USA southern bits:

Having been born in the innards of this country, (USA), the flat lands of the
midwest, then moved to the east coast by the Atlantic ocean (north and south),
I notice that many longtime local residents of small country towns here in
North Carolina seem to have no awareness when they butchered English grammar,
in fact, could care less. They value their little churches, hold fast to their
familial legacy of Grandmother or Grandfather's tried and true traditions,
dogma, tales, and may not enjoy larnin' anything new at all. Still, they are
friendly to everyone. The other residents that live in the more metropolitan
areas and attend the plethora of fine Universities do seem to, or perhaps,
must care.

As for the country nooks and cranny towns, narry a bookstore exist in these
small villages, such as the Miss F. mentioned as Hepzibah North Carolina.
Further, after googling the area of Hepzibah,the best I could find was this
somewhat literary description on a blog spot concerning the whereabouts of Miss
F's critiqued Hepzibah, North Carolina. With more investigation I also wandered
into this blog by the Chief of the place called Hepzibah which should enlighten
all, or not. (Grin)


It seems to have been somewhere around Wendell, NC. but doesn't exist on a map
now. It no longer exists! Though I don't question Miss F's sincerity entirely,
I do wish to clarify for the observers from across the sea that her complaints
are partially fiction. The fact that life is slower here than in New York is
true. Slower than Cincinnati is questionable.

Southern ways are ofttimes snobbishly mocked by onlookers from afar, and even
not so far. Slack-jawed conversations are found mostly in little country
villages where the headlines of the day are of crops, weather, farm animals, or
how drunk Luther was last night, if you are fortunate? enough to overhear them.
Such subjects are not often overheard in the larger cities or notable
University towns, of the state. Oh perhaps there will be such subjects as
drunken Luther, from the Duke or UNC undergrad, but certainly not said in the
same way.

We are divided in three zonal sections: the mountains to the west, the Piedmont
in the middle and the ocean seaside culture to the east. I have no defense for
the seemingly grammar-less souls of the state, for those that need to judge
such speech. There was a time when my English was close to Ohio midwestern
perfect, but that was many years and dialect absorptions ago. Please forgive
any such crimes of speech (grammar) by me, by the way. Oh, the Ohio/Midwestern
dialect of English is the model wanted and used for all network broadcasters
since the 1950's to represent the American English spoken archetype, as most
theater students were and I believe still are taught.

Truly there are times when I overhear conversations with long-time Natives that
are completely foreign to my ears. It is Southernese, not English. I genuinely
love dialects and there are many diverse levels of same throughout the U.S. And
the world. But when I hear the standard "I seen", from all folks of
multi-locations, I must hold back the urge to whisper "saw". "Picayune
meddling"my higher self says. In younger incarnations of self I wouldn't
whisper the correction, I'd loudly project it. I'm older now, and more clear
about my own imperfections and roles in life, and have better manners.

One of our Native southern friends, an educated scholar, now an Environmental
Engineer for the state, tries hard to speak clearly around us, the
non-southerners. We heard him the other night pointing out the spadders. We
were hard-pressed to know what the devil he was talking about. Frustrated he
ran up to the building and pointed to the rather large web and giant spider,
screaming "spadders! spadders! damnit!" "Oh. Spiders". We all laughed.

Reiki Master/artist residing in
Wake Forest, North Carolina (the Piedmont region)

"When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of
the world." --John Muir

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