One of the great, and quietly fading, pleasures is getting driving directions from a Southerner.
GPS technology makes it impossible to get lost- it’s also incredibly dull. I’d like to explore how a Southern GPS would give directions from Taylor Grocery to the Oxford Courthouse. Why would this be a useful feature? Instead of saying “Ready to Navigate,” a Southern GPS might say, “Let’s slap some bacon on biscuit.”
Here are the turn by turn directions for both the Basic GPS and the Southern GPS. To start we’ll ask directions to the Lafayette County Courthouse by mispronouncing it like an LSU fan would: “Laf-ee-et.”
Southern GPS: “Do you mean to say ‘la-FAY-et?'”
Southern GPS: “We’re so far in the sticks they have to pipe in the sunshine.”
Southern GPS: Instead of a map, the screen shows a local man in a Belk Ford gimme cap. It looks up the street and frowns. Scans the other way and says, “ You’re better off going the back way. This is Mr. Hugh’s day to drive.”
Southern GPS: “Go a about a 7-iron to your first right.”
Southern GPS: “You’ll pass three catfish ponds on the right. Then you’ll see the old Hodge place on the left, you’ll know it ‘cause they’re having a yard sale. You’ll pass the Crenshaw place on the right- it’s the one with the old Plymouths in the yard. Nice folks- but they are so country they think a seven-course meal is a possum and a six-pack. This reminds me. While you’re driving, I’ll play Boys ‘Round Here and when it’s over, veer right at the stop sign.”
Southern GPS: “They’ll be a double wide on the right and Thacker Mountain on your left. You ain’t lost yet -just keep on driving. You’ll pass a sign for Kenny Warrnen’s Auto Repair on the left – folks around here love this man. The Old Taylor Wine and Liquor store will be on the right- my ex-wife kept them in business. You’ll pass AAA storage on the left. Just keep going. You may believe you’re lost as last year’s Easter Egg, but you’re doing just fine. Just keep going.”
Southern GPS: “Taylor’s Antiques & Collectibles is on the right. Stop here! They’re doing a food drive. After your good deed, you’ll pass a Chevron station – they have an old timey coke machine out front. Treat yourself to a belly washer. Continue past the Whirlpool plant. Past Chucky Mullins Drive – named after the famous Ole Miss football player. If you know the story of this beloved hero, you might want to gather yourself up before you attempt a sharp dogleg left into Oxford.”
Southern GPS: “Keep going until your first stop sign. Turn right at the Gertrude. You’ll notice Miss Camille’s place with the wraparound porch, wicker furniture and pineapple banner. Bless her heart, she has gall stones and her daughter married a Yankee boy.”
Southern GPS: “Turn right at the blinker. You’ll pass a historical marker for Delta Gamma. The DeeGees were founded by three coeds unable to go home for Christmas. Keep your eyes on the road – the girls are over at Sorority Row now.”
Southern GPS: “Turn left at First Baptist, it takes up the entire block. You may save the pacing mare for Sunday, but you’ll also want to avoid this street Wednesday evening.”
Southern GPS: “You’ll see the Rebel Bookstore doing a land office business on the cattycorner. Take a right. Watch out for the tabby crossing the street. If you pass St Peter’s you’ve gone too far.”
Southern GPS: “You can’t miss the Courthouse, but just to prove all the wisdom in the world ain’t locked up in there, Square Books is just across the street.”
The Southern GPS will get you on time, enlightened and entertained.
Tim Heaton is a HottyToddy.com contributor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. His new book, Bless Your Heart, You Freakin’ Idiot: Southern Sayings Translated is available on Amazon as well as “Momma n’ Em Said: The Treasury of Southern Sayings.