I Am Finally A Southerner

Originally published February 6, 2014.

I’m not sure, but after three decades below the Mason-Dixon Line I think I am finally a Southerner. Either that or I’m suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder because I just heard rumor (a.k.a The National Weather Service forecast) that a fast-moving winter weather system is expected to pass through metro Atlanta tonight and I am FREAKING OUT! Words like WINTERY MIX and SNOW and BLACK ICE make me HYSTERICAL and no, it does not matter that tomorrow calls for sunny skies and temperatures that promise to reach well into the 50’s… must…buy…large…quantities…of…toilet…paper…When snow hits Atlanta, bad things happen. BAD THINGS HAPPEN.

Photo credit: http://howardjkoepka.com/

Photo credit: http://howardjkoepka.com/

In case you hadn’t heard, Atlanta was crippled – CRIPPLED – last week by snow. Not two feet, not one foot, not even six inches, it was two inches of the powdery white stuff that crippled Atlanta. Two inches, I tell you. I was born and raised in Connecticut, but in all my years in the Nutmeg State, I never experienced anything as frightening as what ensued during last week’s snow storm. It snowed steadily for nearly twelve hours and in that time over 1000 auto accidents were reported, 100 of which involved serious injuries. There was one fatality and one baby delivered in a car along the side of the highway.

School was dismissed early for my son, a high school senior, but the seven miles to our house (normally a 15 minute car trip) took him five hours to drive. He was fine, but I WAS FREAKING OUT. Roads along the last part of the trip were impassable so he left the car in a nearby parking lot and trekked the final three-quarters of a mile on foot…in his baseball cleats. Yes, in his baseball cleats because it is baseball season. I think I am finally a Southerner because as far as I’m concerned IT SHOULD NEVER SNOW DURING BASEBALL SEASON. NEVER. EVER.

And another thing, Atlantans are not inferior drivers. We simply don’t own snow tires and ice scrapers and we don’t drive around town with bags of salt in our trunks just in case because it RARELY SNOWS HERE by virtue of it being THE SOUTH. I think I’m finally a Southerner because frankly, I’m sick of Atlantans, and by extension southerners in general, being the brunt of haughty jokes that imply we are stupid and inept. So to all of you hurling insults I say this: at least WE have manners.

Although last week’s snow is gone and all the ice has melted, the mere hint of even a single snowflake paralyzes me. I suppose it could be PTSD, but I prefer to believe after three decades below the Mason-Dixon Line, I am finally a Southerner…y’all decide.

Copyright © 2014 Antoinette Datoc All Rights Reserved