Southern Way of Life



Let me tell you a little story…

When I was a girl growing up in the South
Wild as a March hare, trying to figure things out
Back when the Black-eyed peas were something you put in your mouth
Yeah, you know what I’m talking about…
We were told to either fish or cut bait,
Can’t never could and it don’t pay to be late
When you’re a sight for sore eyes, it’s good to see your face
You know what I’m talking about…





Living in high cotton is the way it should be
Two peas in a pod means you’re hanging with me
If you’re pointing a finger you’re barking up the wrong tree
You know what I’m talking about…




We’re fixin’ to get with it, there’s hoe cakes in the kitchen
You can fetch ‘em if you want ‘em, I reckon it’s time for supper
When you’re smack dab in the middle of some high falutin quibble
No need to start a ruckus or get all cattywampus…


(DOC: 11/4/10 Written By: Deana Carter Deanaling Music/Warner Chappell/ASCAP Damon Elliott Who I Was ENT/Warner Chappell/BMI)



Southern Way of Life is a tongue-n-cheek look at a regional lifestyle & sense of character described in ‘play on word’ analogies. Basically, it’s ‘southernisms’ all tied together to send a message for emphasis. I presume that other regions have certain sayings that sum up ‘trains of thought’ or ‘conditions & circumstances’ just like we do in the south.

There are way too many to fit in the song, but here are a few others that are quite funny (meanings in parenthesis):

  • -“I work from can to can’t” (…never gets a break or rest; overworked)
  • -“Been running like my hair’s on fire!” (…stressed & super busy)
  • -“Go butt a rubber stump!” (…pretty much to heck with you! My MaMaw Polk’s fav)
  • -“Wild as a March hare!” (Wild, rebellious behavior; usually applies to teenagers…:-)
  • -“Poker straight” (usually describes super straight hair with no curl)
  • -“Forty forevers!” (a REALLY long time)
  • -“Slower than molasses in January” (obviously, pretty slow)
  • -“Grandma was slow but she was old!” (when you’re waiting too long on someone)
  • -“Hotter than a pepper poot!” (Yes, you heard me! Describes the weather or some kind of spicy food)
  • -“Drunker than Cooter Brown” (pretty obvious, but no one knows who Cooter was?)
  • -“Finer’n frog hair” (an answer when asked ‘How are you?’)
  • -“Can’t put lipstick on a pig!” (Somebody trying to be something they’re not)
  • -“He could eat corn through a picket fence!” (Describes somebody with buck teeth)
  • -“Dummer than a bag of hammers!” (Someone who’s not too smart)
  • -“Mad as a wet hen,” (somebody’s REALLY mad!)
  • -“High as a cat’s back!” (When something’s overpriced)
  • -“Full as a tick” (ate too much)
  • -“Looks like Country-come-to-town!” (describes a redneck buffoon)

And my Mom’s frequently used:

  • “Those are tight as Dick’s hatband!” (heard this a LOT regarding our wardrobe at times!)


There are lots of others, but these are some fun ones. I’m sure that, no matter where you’re from, you can relate to these types of sayings that were passed down from generation to generation & I’d love to hear a few of yours! I personally love them because a) they’re funny, and b) they broaden the mind to the meaning of a phrase & emphasize the sentiment. And in my opinion, no one does it better than in the South. Southern speak is musical in it’s own right & leans hard toward being documented in song. Country music has faithfully proven that for years.

Deana Carter blah blah blog

In a much more sophisticated way, Jesus used the language of analogies in His day to communicate & drive a point home. He used parables. He chose to tell stories and describe circumstances that would convict the heart and make people think. I truly appreciate that coming from where I come from. And apparently, people in His day appreciated it too, since they’re still being passed down today. Matthew, Mark, and Luke are full of these parables, especially relevant to the times they were living in. Parables of fishing, sowing and reaping, leavened and unleavened bread, laborers and Vineyards, merchants, wedding feasts, talents or payment, wealth & debt, life & death, marriage, children, & many other relevant topics. He compared circumstances they could relate to so that in many cases, they would have to come to the conclusion of truth. He would leave them with the truth in the stories and they would choose to receive it or not. It was such a graceful way to communicate and reach out…into their lives….and invite them (& us) into His heavenly view, using the ordinary & the familiar in creative ways. To this day, His parables are timeless…just like He is. And His truth has never wavered.

For brevity sake, I couldn’t write out Jesus’ is parables in this blog. But, I encourage you to take some time and sit, reading Matthew, Mark, and Luke in the Bible & let the stories penetrate your heart and life. Let’s Gods timelessness and message of truth be a blessing & conviction to you. Take your time. Let it sink in. Be open to the areas of your life that are similar and could use some attention and love.

God had a special reason for creating you and placing you where He did in the world. With Him, there are no accidents or coincidences. He was intentional with you, so return the favor and be intentional with Him. All He wants is a willing and thankful heart….even with all it’s imperfections. Time is spent no better way than with Him. He promises that whatever time is spent with him will be multiplied to your benefit & the benefit of others. Look at the challenging & amazing journey you’ve been on & let God’s truth connect the dots for where you’re headed.

As we come into the Christmas season, take some time and thank God for where He placed you in the world and who He put around you to share that with. Steep in your roots for a while. If there is something or someone in your life that is a challenge, pray about it and ask for strength & encourage to make amends & heal through it & continue or move on. Don’t be scared or shy or continue to be angry. Give Him everything, the good & the bad, the large & the small. He wants it all.

He’s big enough to handle it!

Have a blessed week…


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