A Snowed-In Southerner’s Response to Northern Critics

 snowwwww

 At least twice I day I get polled by a passerby with the question, “Where are you from?”  The question isn’t based out of politeness, but instead a direct reaction to my thick, Southern accent.  I never encountered this before I moved to Raleigh, North Carolina- a cultural melting pot filled with Asians, African, Indians and, yes, the snow veterans that are Northerners.

I don’t get mad about the assumptions that in light of my obvious twang, I must be slightly remedial and, more likely than not, am without indoor plumbing; I get it.  I speak slower, I have a closet full of bizarre home-remedies and I can quote the movie Steel Magnolias by heart – unprompted.  To the outside world, Southerners appear to be odd, American aboriginals that live only in accordance to the Bible, Jack Daniels, and the lyrics to Boot-Scoot-Boogie.  So when we flee to the grocery stores for toilet paper and bread at the very mention of the “s” word, it’s only acceptable that our brothers and sisters to the North snicker and chalk this occurrence up to “those silly, cute Southerners are at it again.”

To those that truly share that opinion, I would like to say this:

 The aboriginal tribe of Carvers Creek is located 17 miles (in any direction) to the nearest town, and those nearest towns are still over 60 miles away from the nearest snowplow.  The inhabitants of this archaic land rely on wells housed in prehistoric “pump houses” to retrieve water from the earth.  If freezing temperatures unrelentingly persist, the pipes can freeze, causing the pump or the water filter to shatter and running upwards of thousands of dollars, or acorns, or clay sacrificial pots (whatever we can barter in exchange for goods) to fix or replace.  Additionally, Carvers Creek consists of several miles of intertwined roads, none of which are salted, or covered in brine, or (once the snow comes) plowed; though the tribe elders can use smoke signals to communicate across fields and lowlands, actual travel for these hunters and gathers becomes very limited, leaving the Creek dwellers to attempt to piece together elementary puzzles, or paint pictures of buffalo on the walls of their caves.

 To the sophisticate Northerner, the answer to this chilly predicament is simple, “be prepared.”  It’s a solid motto and has undoubtedly served the Boy Scouts of America well, but asking the Southerner to prepare for snow is the same misguiding question as asking Methodist to prepare to “get dunked” in the Baptismal pool; it’s difficult to prepare for an event that one truly believes will never happen.  In a climate where it’s not unusual for me to work on a tan over Christmas break, nor is it unrealistic or frowned upon to wear sandals on Tuesday and lined boots on Wednesday, why would our city and state officials a lot funds for a fleet of snowplows or an army of DOT workers?  The old cliché “respect the unexpected” should apply, but in a state that is already past it’s financial breaking point, there simply is no budget for “the unexpected;”  with a demand for higher teacher salaries and cry for stronger state mental health services looming at the forefront of Gov. Pat McCory’s door, the state’s focus remains on the tangible, “here and now” calls for alarm.  When asked why the state or county officials do little or nothing to handle an “icy crisis” I can simply say that North Carolina has, to quote Southern vernacular, “bigger fish to fry.”

 This isn’t to say that nothing has been done; Wilmington, North Carolina officials called in several personnel from Duke Energy in anticipation of ice-induced power outages, and Gov. McCory declared a state of emergency Tuesday, prior to the first flake falling, in hopes of gaining quicker access to federal funds.  Still, unlike areas that are accustomed to yearly white precipitation, in North Carolina you will not see the convoy of snowplows dispatching sand and brine in an attempt to battle a winter beast before it strikes.

 Mind you, our Northern neighbors, less than a week ago the piedmont region of North Carolina saw temperatures reaching almost 65 degrees; the idea of snow is seldom on our radar, and when we do see a blustery bought of Old Man Winter coming our way, we lack the state finances and internal infrastructure to adequately prepare for an event that, though occasionally happens, is still rather foreign.   So, while it’s easy to mock and snicker from behind the wheels of a four wheel drive vehicle, parked snuggly in your garage beside two snow shovels and bags of rock salt, remember that what you Notherner’s may see as standard purchases, Southerner’s view as a waste of money.  When threatened with icy conditions we hunker down; yes, we buy milk and bread; yes, we make sure our cars are filled with gasoline; yes, we break out the oil lamps and the kerosene heater and yes, we shut down entire towns and cities.  Why?  Because we don’t have enough experience with these conditions to know what to do, and instead of risking our safety, and yours, we’d much rather look like fools in line at the grocery story and geriatric, near-sighted grandparents on the road than be phoning our insurance companies later.

The good news is, it’s the South, and tomorrow it could be 70 degrees, in which case this white wonder will quickly melt away, and y’all are more than welcome to come over, sit a spell, and drink a mint julip while reading Faulkner.  Why the invitation?  Because I’m Southern, and by that same extension, I am polite.  When you turn your nose up at sweet tea, or complain about the muggy and damp summer nights, I will not begrudge you; instead, I will offer you a glass of lemonade and offer you the seat closest to the fan- because that’s what neighbors do around here, and maybe you should remember where you are before you pass judgment.

74 thoughts on “A Snowed-In Southerner’s Response to Northern Critics

  1. Thank you! This is fitting as I am in Atlanta, Ga and we are the joke of all new casts. Our city roads kept people from being able to get home or have children delivered by bus as expected to their homes. We are so backwards that our children spent the night in schools. Thank goodness we are in the south because through all the mess and confusion and mishandled response from local governments, we helped all we could to help those in need. Strangers were taken into homes of all kinds of local people. Numerous southerners pushed and pulled and assisted the car stranded on the highways. Southern hospitality had many, many Atlantans giving more than they could afford to give and gave anyway. The news doesn’t mention all the school personnel and others that went above and beyond what they had on their job description. Thankful I am Southern. If this same horrible experience happened elsewhere not southern, would it have been handled with more care or love?

    • Yes in the north we let people go starving and freeze because were horrible animals. NO. The one guy on the street that owns a plow plows the whole street and everyone’s driveway, not because he has to or because he’s getting paid for it, but out of the kindness of his heart and the safety for everyone. And the kids on the block? RUN to the old ladies down the street to shovel their walkway and steps because no one wants to see them hurt. We bake cookies and share with our neighbors on snow days. One year, a new neighbor who was southern, didn’t know how to handle the snow and everyone gave her info on what to do. Someone even donated a pair of bad weather windshield wipers they didn’t need to her. On top of that all our schools have fundraisers and can collections for the less fortunate on snow days and during the Cold winter months. But no one wants recognition for this on the news, it’s just a part of being a good neighbor and good northerner.

      • So why, in the north – where in fact someone on the street DOES have a snow shovel and salt, or even a snowplow – if you are so understanding and helpful to fellow northerners do so many of those transplanted here in the south leave the generous spirit behind? Why do so many newly to the South feel compelled to scoff at the caution we take over icy roads and our school children? Be a good neighbor. Be a good northerner – be helpful and supportive. Don’t alienate your southern friends by minimizing our fear of ice – help us deal with it. Or go back up north.

      • I don’t think it was the author’s point to make Northerners seem like evil human beings. We all have things that we are used to in our different parts of the country. You don’t need a pat on the back or congratulations for all the wonderful things that you do for each other when it snows (regularly, I might add). Those things are just common courtesy. However, you also don’t need to ridicule an entire region simply because it is faced with something out of the ordinary (for us) and doesn’t have the proper tools or skills to deal with it. There are good people all over; kindness is kindness, no matter where you are. But the same can also be said for rudeness, and making fun of the misfortunes of others, no matter who they are or where they are from, is just plain rude.

    • I love love love my southern roots! I, too, am thankful I’m Southern! I’m actually from the coast so we prepare for hurricanes. We’re more likely to get those. And for my wonderful northern friends…… don’t make fun, just embrace and love us. We keep the firewood handy, the tanning lotion ready and we bless your hearts ❤

  2. This rings true for many things in the Creek, anything you want is three days away, be it better weather, rain, replacement parts for machinery or lab results. You just have to wait for it.

  3. Oh my. I moved up to northern VA over a year ago from Wilmington NC and though VA IS a southern state, naturally it’s a lot different here. And I can definitely relate. However, this article does us Southerners a great disservice. If you’re gonna do a piece like this, please proofread or have someone proofread it for you. So many grammatical errors. And yes, the grammar police are warranted here because non-southerners do not allot (not a lot) us Southerns much benefit of any doubt. Good ideas though. At least you got the general point across.

    • I should say that this was quickly drafted over a 30 minute lunch break. I appreciate your comment, and as a former English teacher I completely agree. However this was a quick response to the chirping of several coworkers. Thanks!

      • JN, as an English professor, I strongly suggest that you read your own post before calling out the inadequacies of another.

    • Not so many grammar errors in this delightful post, I’d say. You say there are many, but fail to highlight any of them. If you want to pick on grammar (or words that don’t exist, apart from common slang), start with “gonna,” which is in your own reply (“gonna = going to,” for those of you who have forgotten, over the years).

    • If you’re going to insult someone’s writing while using “gonna” in your own then maybe you should take a look at yourself first.

    • I would correct all of the spelling errors, before “Liking”, re-posting, sharing, or otherwise “approving” it. And, yes, I believe there are just as many “miss-spelling” miscreants up North, if not more. They just can’t spell it, NOR pronounce it correctly. And, yes, I agree with the “spirit” of the piece — but it still won’t get an “A”, maybe not a “B” in MY rural Southern small-town high school, where I learned written and spoken “American” English.

      Can you IMAGINE my opinion of the multitude of Hindi-English speakers and writers who have inundated our nation AND our JOBS in the past 15 years. We don’t just need a new immigration policy for the millions of ILLEGAL immigrants, we need to get CONTROL of the “LEGAL” ones.

      When I played Santa Claus at a Christmas Party (circa 1970) at my SOUTHERN California apartment complex (a 7-year Virginia expatriate), some of the children wanted to know, “Santa, why do you have a Southern accent?”. My response (in PROPER Southern English): “Because I’m from the South Pole, honey. There’s NO Terra Firma at the North Pole to build a toy factory on.”

      • Nice. You guys have been the Bangladesh of the US, undercutting the labor costs of the Midwest and the Northeast, the areas that built the country and leaving rust and ghost towns. You can’t take it when it’s done to you. Why don’t you all secede again, we’ll let you bible thumping conservatives leave and build your banana republic that will make the confederacy resemble Mexico, even without all “‘dem illegals.”

    • Did you not read my entire post? People make fun of Southerners for everything, and one of those things is a misappropriated knack for using bad grammar. I said I understand the post, but if someone is going to post something as a stance against teasing Southerners about something and uses bad grammar or spelling that just adds fuel to the fire. I hate for people to talk trash about Southerners. You’re doing it in YOUR post to me. And I will live wherever I like, thank you. Hopefully far from you.

  4. The greatest part about all of this is how you are trying to portray how horrible northerners are and the whole time you are sarcastically badmouthing them. At least they won’t talk badly about you and try to be your friend by asking you to come over for a glass of cavity producing sweet tea the next day. At least if they talk badly about you they stand behind it and if they are your friend they are very loyal. I’m sick of the whole “southern hospitality” thing. It’s not politeness its being fake. If it was the other way around, you southerners would be doing the same thing. And for the record, us northerners are very very nice and helpful to each other.

    • Certainly not my intent to offend. I really am considerate person and I’m sorry if you took this personally. I have several friends from up North and they are amazing people, but unfortunately I am frequently the punchline to several jokes- this was simply a lighthearted response. I’m not being fake when I say that I do care about you, and I would invite you over for tea. My email is simplysarahruth@gmail.com if you wish to take me up on that offer.

    • as a southerner who now lives in the very northern mid west I have a reply. I have met a lot of very friendly people up here, and I can also say that as a transplants I still don’t quite fit in. Very few have invited me in for tea or anything else, I blew a tire on my car when I was 8 months pregnant. I did not have phone with me, I had to walk almost a mile before any of the traffic speeding by stopped and offered to help ( he was from Oklahoma ). Southern hospitality is very real and the friends I have here in the north are very good people. And like you said, northerners are very very nice and helpful to each other.

    • Can I just say, THANK YOU! I’ve grown up in the north and south my entire life and I must say you hit the nail on the head with my feelings Jodi. As well as how I’ve been treated since day 1 of arriving in the south. I’d rather someone not like me to my face than behind my back. And while I did get a little giggle out of this article, I did feel that it was very hypocritical at the same time saying northerners should be nice when the entire tone of this letter scoffed at how it’s PERCEIVED northerners act. A misconception I will blame on bad media much like how Dobermans are believed to be vicious dogs.

      • Well, I would never call anybody a vicious dog, and I certainly would never scoff at someone due to their geographical location. This was simply a lighthearted response to the banter throughout my office. I had no idea so many people would take notice.

        Also – I love Dobermans! 🙂

    • She’s not badmouthing them, she’s stating the truth. Anytime we get snow in the south a large amount of northerners snicker and make fun. Southern hospitality is real, when I went up north this past summer all I got was made fun of and stared at because apparently sense I have an accent I’m an idiot. While actually I’ve been offered a full ride to Harvard University. You northerners do nothing but complain about every thing. If it isn’t how you do at home then you complain. Our “cavity inducing” sweet tea is nothing compared to y’alls cancer causing rivers and your “pop”, whatever that is. Fact is the north and south do things differently. We settled that a long time ago. But the thing do share is pride in where we are from. Whether you say you’re a southerner or northerner, we are all Americans. And that’s all that matters

  5. I agree that it’s different in the south, and that people aren’t used to driving in snowy conditions, but I lived in Greenville, Kinston, and Deep Run North Carolina for the last 8 years and of those 8 years, there was ONE without snow. It’s not as uncommon as everyone down south makes it out to be.

  6. I love it and having lived in the frozen north for 14 years….Northern snows are mostly like sand at the beach. It blows off the already cold roads instead of turning to ice. It starts snowing in October or November and doesn’t melt till May. On the odd occasion that we do get ice up here the locals run to the grocery for milk and bread and likely as not they slide off the road just like southerners do, the advantages being that the nearest car is 2 miles behind you and not at your bumper. Also when they slide off the road they simply go in a ditch and not off a mountain. And yes, they really do deduct IQ points for a southern accent.

  7. I don’t think you inviting people for lemonade and letting have the seat in front of the fan is because you’re a southerner as much as your parents raised you right. I know plenty of southerners who would throw you under a bus faster then you could take your next breath, but the same is true for northerners. I lived the first 13 years of my life above the mason dixon line and then 13 years below it. I’ve been in NJ, SC, VA, NC, FL, TX, MI and PA. You see mean and kind people in ALL of these places. I’ve had worse experiences with southerners being rude and hateful then i have northerners. And just because northerners are straight forward (for the most part) and will tell you how they feel, southerners tend to be sweet to your face and talk behind your back. As regards to the snow, yes, they are more prepared for it in the north, but it’s comical listening to everyone freak out about snow on the rare occasion it falls from the sky. Yes I know the state isn’t quite prepared, yes it’s dangerous, but it’s a little vacation as home with the family, enjoy it until it melts in a day or two. It doesn’t need to be a bigger deal then it has to be. Just my two cents.

  8. Don’t forget that we can’t drive in the snow and they could do it in their sleep. But not down here where our snow turns to ICE within the hour. They just like to pass judgement on what they don’t know, and unfortunately we are a rather unknown species. I enjoy my snow days, they are just jealous to not be able to get away from work for a day.

  9. We’ve had snow in the area where I live this week and more Yankees were in ditches than us. You just can’t fix stupid.

  10. Not to quibble – but the author left out something important. Here in the South, we use the unexpected snow day as a day to truly PLAY. We treat it as the special, rare occurrence that it is and we use it wisely. We sled, make snow cream, make S’Mores in the fire place, throw snowballs, make snowmen, eat more snow cream and just basically cut loose. Mothers boot well bundled children out and say “Come back when you can no longer blink” and they look forward to exhausted children going to bed early and sleeping through the night. Have you ever seen grown adults get so excited at seeing the first flake of snow through the office window? People will stop and huddle and just gaze at the wonder for a while. Then we hurry off to “prepare.” We are preparing for a day or two of unplanned, unexpected, unscheduled pure-tee fun !!!!

    • To agree with lyntriplett: that is exactly what I did with my children. We knew something was coming, we prepared, and we played, ate like kings, and took in the winter wonderland, and played some more. We enjoyed the snow, our neighbors, the snow cream, the beautiful sights, the excitement and family fellowship. Call it southern or whatever you wish, we had a blast. We honestly didn’t care what the north thought, we were too busy enjoying it while it lasted.

  11. Love this as I grew up in the metropolis of Lisbon just 5 miles due Carvers Creek(my grandmother was from there). I continued the tradition of milk and bread plus a few things extra but ran out of time to gas up the jet…I have thoroughly enjoyed the time at home and a slower pace that peppered my memory as a child. All that other stuff will be waiting next week when we get back to the rat race….

    • I am in utter agreement at this response my lovely friend! We were not prepared for this storm and as a result we had many accidents and my fellow nurses and I were imprisoned at nhrmc for 4 days straight! But, another wonderful aspect of our dumbass southern lifestyle is we pick ourselves up by our bootstraps and keep on truckin! Love love love love

  12. Well as a northerner, I will say when I moved south I constantly had southerners telling me they didn’t think I was from the north because I was nice. They said New Yorkers were rude. The irony of this took my breath away because that stereo type felt pretty rude. Stereo types and offensive sayings come from everywhere and not all are on purpose. I think people need to be more forgiving of each other’s ignorance and be willing to look at the heart of a person.

  13. To Libbi Blair. We don’t leave kindness and helpfulness behind darlin. Just look at down town Greenville and surrounding areas and you can see what Yankees have done with the place… it’s finally beautiful. Oh, and we finally shut Bob Jones up for ya’ll too. Welcome to the new South… want it or not. We are here to stay and finally doing something with this state…

    • I will admit that Greenville does look pretty stellar, but to say the state has been in shambles is biased. I remember growing up with acres of farmland and doing just fine. I appreciate the cultural collision, but I’m also proud of my roots. Thanks for your thoughts! -SR

  14. I think it’s now time to remember there are good and bad everywhere, there are kind, genuinely caring people in every state. Unfortunately we all seem to have also met the rude, self centered and ignorant that seem to abound in every corner also. Lets try to concentrate on the good and remember to teach our children the right way to go.

  15. My problem is when Northeners move down here & then criticize the Southern way of life. We do things different down here. Sorry, but if you don’t like our ways, go back home. We didn’t ask you to move down here in the first place. I will be the first to welcome anyone who wants to stay here, but leave us & our Southern ways alone!!

  16. In fairness, and I say this as a Southerner transplanted to Ohio, the South is a region that tends to vote for politicians that cut welfare, unemployment, etc. every chance they get, and one of your arguments for this is some variation of, “You shouldn’t have to need welfare, because you should have been prepared for downturns in income and employment. It’s your fault you’re poor.”

    You know, maybe if you as a region (I have no idea how you personally vote) were a little more understanding of other people’s crises, and voted that way, some other people might see clear to understanding *your* crises.

    P.S. Maybe they *do* ask where you’re from to be polite. They wouldn’t have any reason to think you were from somewhere else if you sounded like the locals where you are. So they’re curious. Nothing wrong with that.

    • As a former educator I will be the first to admit that the state’s priorities are off. I would never disagree with the welfare system, as my mother is a director for social services and my sister is medicaid dependent.

      Unfortunately, I have yet to have somebody ask me where I’m from without making a little jab…..but I do have a really thick accent. Thank you for your thoughts!

  17. I do not believe this started or was meant as a “Northerners” bashing. My feelings are it was in defense of being betrayed by the press and people from the north that were making fun of a very bad situation in the South that wasn’t funny or inappropriate comments made by a select few. IN THE South, we are the first to make jokes and laugh at the idea of cities and in some cases the majority of a state closed before a Winter Weather Event. We will laugh again and will take the comments making Southerners look backwards, slow, and complete idiots. This is fine with me. I don’t care if you are willing to be ignorant and closed off to an education of a wonderful group of people that survive in different conditions you don’t understand. When a news story is shown of a family from the North or West caught out overnite in freezing snowy conditions because of an unfortunate event, I know all people are glad they are safe and back home. This is generally in an area where this weather occurs often. The people in the South more than likely, do not own the clothes that are only sold here in speciality shops. Hell, most of us don’t even own a coat. Sweaters and jackets are the norm. The reality was that 1000’s of family or individuals were put in a position of being caught out in a freezing, snowy condition because of an unfortunate event. The reactions of others was not of concern or understanding but of ignorant statements, criticism, and jokes about what was not funny for the people experiencing this weather event. We live in the South and most of us wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. I can’t imagine shoveling snow to get to my unheated car, much less from car to street shoveling to be capable of even being on the road. This sends shivers of fear and dread down my spine. I commend all the folks living this existence and still going to where they needed to be prior to using your shovels. I am not sure I could do this for an entire winter, nor do I want to. We exist is warm, humid conditions that we are familiar with and are prepared for. When a heatwave hits an area up north, we are concerned as these are miserable conditions that we understand, humidity or not. We are aware many places aren’t in an area always equipped to handle these conditions. Most of the South has air conditioning and fans available to all. It is the same as the conditions we experience that are not the norm. We will laugh at the silly idea of closing a state before a storm hits with you after awhile. It isn’t funny to us now. Put yourself in the position of others is what Southerners understand. It is how the majority of the South show our imagination we are so well known for. Close your eyes and the other eyes not able to see and imagine and understand what is unfamiliar to you. If you want to visit, please come and allow us the chance to be Southern. We love talking about ourselves and we are always up for company. I’ll bake a cake or cookies, make iced tea, sweet or not, pull up a chair and chat. I know the fan was offered before by someone else but I can’t promise I will remember my manners. Sometimes we are a bit naughty. By th way, we have Coke and Pepsi down here if our idea of water is a game changer. We would love to change your mind.

    • Who in the north was making fun of the accidents or people being stranded in the south. I didn’t hear northerners making fun of that situation. Media or otherwise. Just curious where this is coming from?

      • I have lived in southeastern NC for 20 yrs. When ever there is bad weather my family and friends from NY state are always concerned about this area. Never has anyone made fun of southern born Americans

  18. Did you read this post? Did you watch the news? I have heard from too many people to count. I hear the news in Canada had jokes about sending their crack smoking mayor to come run the city that’s even to messed up for him to fit in. Mind you, I didn’t personally hear every comment made about the South or Atlanta. The jokes were mainly centered around Atlantà. I was certainly called and told about it over and over and the stories being told. I am certainly not the only person that heard or was told of the jokes about the south and their 2″ of snow. If this was a conspiracy only affecting myself and the others I associate with then it was well done. I hope you didn’ t get the story. I would love to know that someone kept their joking comment to themselves. I even heard the joke Saturday Night Live was doing a sketch about drivers in Atlanta dealing with snow. I hope not but I suppose anything could happen. It is old news now, over and I hope done with. I personally don’t want to think about it anymore. The Atlanta news stations are still commenting. Everyone that left their car where they had been stuck for hours were towed is the latest joke. People are paying money to remove their cars from impound. This is even screwed up. Depending on where you were stuck determines if you are the ones paying towing and impound fee. This was not a problem based solely on weather. The weather started the chain of events. The state and city governments didn’t do their jobs They were so busy by the time it happened saying they weren’t responsible that the blame belonged elsewhere. The finger pointing is funny. Really funny. It’ s like the old joke of “Who’s on First base?”. It doesn’t matter what happens now. I would like to know it won’t happen again. It’ s not the first time but I hope they have the drill correct now. Local weather has suggested it may all happen again next week. I guess it might give them a chance to practice and get it right! I am sorry if I offended you in any way. I was responding to comments already made. I have a sense of humor and I found myself smiling at some of the stories. It is like reading about flying saucers landing on McDonalds and the old woman with two heads that is really a duck, etc..etc. I appreciate a good laugh so I understand comedy, even dark comedy is funny.

  19. You forgot one. My ex was from northern Indiana. Everyone had two sets of tires and wheels. They had snow tires mounted and ready to be slapped on the car. And when the snow started melting the switched back. We don’t do that. The tires would rot before they wore out and wouldn’t cover anyone’s cost/benefits analysis. Oh, they all also had snow chains. I also discovered up there that snow is easy to drive in. We nearly always get ice mixed in. So, we end up driving on an ice rink that wasn’t prepared without snow tires and chains.

  20. It’s a misconception that we salt and plow for every inch of snow in the north. It can be days before the plow gets to your street, and many many times the State runs out of money to salt the roads, so, often we are driving on untreated roads, just like the South when it snows and they have no road treatments. The big difference comes with the experience and the attitude (ok..and snow tires, that does make a difference). Northerners are just plain used to it so there’s no novelty with it.

    • How sad…. Hope that when ya’ll move south, that we are able to help you regain the magic, fun and beauty of snowfalls. Although, in exchange, it is rare for us to have a white Christmas. Such is the compromise. Welcome !

  21. Interesting because I have never heard anyone referred to as a northerner or a southerner until I moved south. Every single time it snows, an article like this or a Facebook post appears in my feed insulting northerners. It’s extremely frustrating to read such comments when “southerners” pride themselves on hospitality and manners. There’s such negativity towards northerners, but many of us were out there helping our neighbors, pushing stuck cars, shoveling neighborhood sidewalks, and saying prayers for everyone’s safety. Whether the state has money or not, we knew this storm was coming. NC may not have money for plows, but that certainly is not the fault of the hard working northern transplants that are contributing to OUR state and economy. I often hear that we don’t have snow in NC very often, but I’ve seen snow almost every year I live hear. So, I will offer YOU a hot cup of coffee and a bag of rock salt because that’s what neighbors do.

  22. I’m a native southerner and the question which I’d love to see asked more often is “Why in the world are there so many northern transplants here in the south?” In my opinion it seems to be summed up by, “These people can no longer afford to live in their home states and must come down here because it’s cheaper.” Of course, no one wants to admit to that, and instead they always change the subject and go about insulting the locals.
    So let me say this, “We were here first and if you hate it and us so much then Go Home!” You don’t go into someone else’s house and insult their furniture. Y’all are the guests here. And as such, you should behave that way. Remember, you are the invaders, the ones who chose to leave the paradise that is the Jersey Shore and trudge to the outer darkness below the Mason-Dixon line. Also, it is not your sworn duty to remake the south into another New York, New Jersey, or Pennsylvania. (lot of Pennsylvanians here in Greensboro, go figure) We’re not interested in how Bagels or Crumb Cake are made in NYC. (regarding bagels: We have doughnuts here in the south, too. We just know when to throw them out if they get stale and tough.) And to us, your accents are comparable to Wolverine running his adamantium claws down a mile-long chalkboard. At least southern drawls or twangs are easy to listen to. Nobody ever finds a New Jersey accent “charming.”
    It just always amazes me that for such a place that you hate so much, you seem to feel inexorably drawn to, so much so that you end up taking up residence here. There were more students from New York & New Jersey here at UNCG (in my home town, mind you) than there were local students. What’s the matter, can’t afford to send your precious snowflakes to a fine, northern ivy-league college?
    Or maybe you’ve just moved down here because it’s warmer, but not as hot as Florida.

  23. You can be prepared without spending a fortune. The reality is that the debacle in Atlanta was completely avoidable. If I were one of the parents whose child got stranded I would sue the city for gross negligence all while honoring the teachers for their unrelenting care. The issues in Atlanta were man made due to gross negligence and, dare I say, incompetence.

  24. While I do appreciate the overall point of this article, I do have to correct you on one matter. We do brine in advance. My dad has been with the DOT for 35 years and he went in 8 hours Sunday to prepare the trucks and brine the roads. They were brining 2 days in advance, however you are spot on concerning resources. We simply don’t have enough to buy numerous plows for the every 3 or so years snow storms 🙂

  25. I think it is just a little annoying that the networks make such a big deal over snow in the South. I live in Montana and i am sure you know we get a lot of snow fall. The city i live in hasn’t had a “snow day” since Mt. St. Helens erupted. We always prepare for the worst. The city does not shut down for snow and ice. We endure 100+ temperatures in summer and subzero temps (yes negative 20 or 40) in the winter. We prepare for good and bad. We have a small infrastructure too since most of Montana’s economy is Farm, Ranch and tourism so I can empathize on not having the funds to prepare for winter storms. (Feel free to compare Montana’s average medium income to your own state.) Our storms or other extraordinary weather is never reported on national news because we are tucked up and away in the Northwest… it is “normal” . I still think it is stupid to not prepare somewhat for cold issues. There are a lot of common sense things people can do even if you only get two storms a year. Hurricanes only happen a couple times a year and you all know how to prepare for that? I really am not trying to be disrespectful, I am sorry you feel bad because of the snickering but why not evaluate what you can do to change rather then navel gaze? I think it is a poor excuse not to provide education (like how to correct a vehicle that begins to fish tail) on how to handle these conditions or have gravel trucks available. Us folks in the Northwest have to pay for our education, social programs and infrastructure yet we find a way to budget. People’s safety is NEVER a waste of money. Can you see WHY we would snicker a little? Not being used to things is an excuse I hear every year from southerners when a snow storm hits. Why not just prepare, slow down and use a little common sense. If you go to an ice rink, do you RUN across it or walk gingerly? By the way, we do have snow plows but they often are not deployed until after the snow stops. Only certain roads are plowed and most of the residential streets are never touched with a snow plow. Montana would be broke if we kept things “clear” all the time. Perhaps it is time to contact your local governments and come up with a better plan.

  26. True! You don’t hear us laughing at northerners without air conditioning on the rare occasion that the thermostat hits triple digits out there. We’re more likely to ‘bless their hearts’ then say ‘should’ve been prepared.’ The fact is, no one has the money to be prepared for every eventuality, so you prepare for the likely ones and hope for the best, and that’s true everywhere.

  27. Love this!! I tell our Yankee friends that here on the coast of NC, we do hurricanes, rip tides, and sharks. We all saw how the yanks handled our hurricanes, they didn’t know what to do with a bit of our southern hospitality….bless their hearts!!!

  28. love it- reminds me of something that happened when I was 12 years old. My father was one of the men that built the parkways in the South East- and the Ranger let us enter Great Smokey National Parkway before he closed the road due to a huge snow storm on the mountain- It took us close to 3 hours to get across the mountain in the middle of the day it was dark as night and could not see the end of our car. As we got to the other side there was a man from New York arguing with the Ranger- who opened the gate for us and closed it back- the man was yelling that he knew how to drive in the snow- he was from NY and not some southerner and we were let thru why not him. My father looked at him and said, ” I built the damn road and almost did not make it across.” The ranger bid us good day – and got in his truck and left the man from new York at the locked gate.

  29. I am one of those rare half breeds that has lived in both the North and South with both yankee blood and long southern roots. Not sure who gave you background on how northerners deal with snow but it is not much different than the South. I live deep in the northeast now and there are so many people stocking up at the grocery store before a storm I dread it the day before as it is definitely frenzied. Schools get cancelled with the smallest snow and people stay home and don’t venture out if they can avoid it just like the news tells us not to. Yes it is a bit entertaining to watch some southerners encounter snow but it is more like watching a northerner encountering a pig pickin for the first time. I remember the complete shock and amusement that southerners had that I did not know what one was and all the nuances. I was not offended by their amusement and saw it for just what it was…..a new experience. I also remember it snowed one day in five years in Wilmington, North Carolina and my Michigan raised Father took off work and helped us southern kids use the entire yard to make a single snowman. Mom did all her errands before the storm and had a great pot of warm soup the day of. It was wonderful for all. Most northerners are not mocking you they are just saying hey don’t worry too much it is just snow and it will melt and life will be back to normal soon enough. Be prepared and just ride it out. Northerners know…they have been through it a lot and you southerners not used to snow are lucky as it will likely be gone in a day or two.

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