If you are going to live or visit in the South, you need to know these rules:
1. That farm boy you see at the gas station 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 Navigator. Drive it or get the [bleep] 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.
4. We all started huntin' and fishin' when we were seven years old. Yeah, we saw Bambi. We got over it.
5. 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 -- bait.
6 . Pull your pants up. You look like an idiot.
7. 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 at the time.
8. 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.
9. 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.
10. You bring Coke into my house, it better be brown, wet, and served over ice.
11. So you have a sixty thousand-dollar car. We're real impressed. We have a quarter of a million-dollar combine that we only use two weeks a year.
12. 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.
13. We eat dinner together with our families. We pray before we eat (yeah,even breakfast). We go to church on Wednesdays and Sundays and we go to high school football games on Friday nights. We still address our seniors with "yes, sir" and "yes, ma'am," and we sometimes still take Sunday drives around town to see friends and neighbors.
14. We don't do "hurry up" well.
15. Greens - yeah, we have greens, but you don't putt on them. You boil them with salty fatback, bacon or a ham hock.
16. Yeah, we eat catfish, bass, bream and carp. You really want sushi and caviar? It's available at the bait shop.
17. They are pigs. That's what they smell like. Get over it. Don't like it? Interstate 85 goes two ways - Interstate 40 goes the other two. Pick one.
18. Grits are corn. You put butter, salt, and maybe even some pepper on them. If you want to put milk and sugar on them, then you want cream of wheat--go to Kansas. That would be I-40 west.
19. 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.
20. So every person in every pickup waves? Yeah, it's called being friendly. Understand the concept?
21. 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.
22. That Highway Patrol Officer that just pulled you over for driving like an idiot -- his name is "Sir," no matter how young he is.
23. We have lots of pine trees. They have sap. It drips from them. You park your Navigator under them, and they'll leave a logo on your hood.
24. You burn an American flag in our state, you get beat up. No questions. The liberal contingent of our state legislature -- all four of them -- enacted a measure to stop this. There is now a $2.50 fine for beating up the flag burner.
25. No, we don't care how you do things up North. If it is so great up there, why not visit a Northern state or stay there. And no, down here, we don't have an accent, you do.
Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, Champagne in one hand, strawberries in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO - What a ride!