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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

north vs. south

I'm still teaching. I know I don't mention it much on here, but that's because I'm cautious that my students could find the blog and see that I've written about them. I'm also pretty sure that I could violate some rule or act or something.

We go off topic a lot in my class and today we spent a lot of time talking about the cultural differences between the north and south.

About half of my students are from South Carolina and the other half are from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts, New York, Maryland, and Georgia. I've got all East Coast students, so they've got that in common. We started talking about the football games and some of these freshmen didn't realize that guys wore bow ties and khakis to the football games and that girls wear black dresses and flip flops.

ESPN Gameday said, "If South Carolina isn't the essence of Southern hospitality, I don't know what is. Of course, in the South, a college football game is practically a formal event. But USC takes it to a whole new level. That football crowd is like something you would see in Vogue magazine." Of course I'm proud of this!

One girl in my class said, "What's a grit?"

I need to put her in touch with our friend at Puttin on the G.R.I.T.S. Then someone else said that they'd heard that grits were oatmeal and hash browns mixed together.

What?!

That's disgusting and completely wrong. I emailed all of them the correct definition and promised to serve them some shrimp and grits or chicken and grits (for those allergic to shellfish) by the end of the semester.

Some of the other differences we heard were that people in South Carolina say, "drawer," but people from Massachusetts say, "draw" when referring to those big things that fit into chests that hold your clothes.

It was a really fun day of class as we discussed our differences and laughed about the things that we're not used to. Those of you that are displaced in the north or the south; what are the biggest differences you've found? Any funny things that are new to you?