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Inebriated Southerners have measured their drunkenness by him ever since. “She’s as happy as a dead pig in the sunshine.” When a pig dies, presumably in a sty outside, the sun dries out its skin.
This effect pulls the pig’s lips back to reveal a toothy “grin,” making it look happy even though it’s dead.
Tall cotton bushes are easier to pick and yield higher returns.
If you’re living “in high cotton,” it means you’re feeling particularly successful or wealthy. “She was madder than a wet hen.” Hens sometimes enter a phase of “broodiness” — they’ll stop at nothing to incubate their eggs and get agitated when farmers try to collect them.
Language discrepancies naturally arise in different geographic regions, like the raging pop vs.
soda debate, but the South undoubtedly takes the cake.
In my short life, I’ve seen Trustee’s Garden in Savannah, I’ve eaten fifty-dollar shrimp in Charleston, I’ve touched the Cadillac Hank Williams died in. These mossy trees carry chiggers that will eat a man alive.
I watched a kid take a fall that should’ve broken his legs. They will still protect their own with stiff faces. A braver lot of public servants, you will not find.
The Circle D Rodeo Arena sits in the middle of the sticks. The place was crawling with Wranglers, Ariats, and Skoal rings. “An attack on our hometown, Yankees killed and wounded a quarter of our men.” Confederate Park has a white monument that stands tall. It’s here to remember farmers, shopkeepers, and anyone who died defending their home. Still, you should know, people here haven’t changed altogether. They followed his scent through the mossy trees like they were on a coonhunt. One teacher says, “Told my kids, ‘I don’t care if you pee your pants or tee-tee in a tin can, you ain’t leaving this classroom.” Teachers said silent prayers and kissed foreheads all day. Legend tells that he lived on the Mason-Dixon line — the border between the North and South — during the Civil War.To avoid the draft on either side, Cooter decided to stay drunk throughout the entire war, making him ineligible for battle. Off 90, there’s an uneven road that leads to a dirt arena. One little girl is walking a Labrador on the sidewalk. “Battle of Marianna lasted thirty minutes,” an old man tells me. Jackson County deputies canvassed the area with hounds. This area isn’t a place the evening-news reporters like to show you. It’s a place where men wear boots to booster club dinners. Where average people once died in their streets because these mossy trees were home. But they are magnificent—the trees, not the chiggers. A century ago, a Civil War battle was fought on these streets she walks on. A place where teachers are two steps away from comic-book heroes.