Turns out, the South is a pretty nice place to live

posted at 6:40 pm on September 29, 2011 by Tina Korbe

When I first moved to Washington D.C., my dad jokingly warned me not to hype home too much. “If they find out just how nice we have it down here, all your new East Coast friends will want to move to the South and our cost of living will go up,” he teased. In my family, we like to say the South is the country’s best-kept secret. But, as it turns out, plenty of people have discovered it: During the last decade, the South was the fastest-growing region of the country.

In his column today on National Review Online, Lee Habeeb, vice president of content for Salem Radio Network, chronicles his own journey south, from New Jersey to Mississippi. Habeeb cites all the usual suspects as to what makes the South appealing, from the slower pace to the lower cost of living:

“Have you lost your mind?” is the refrain I heard over and over from friends up north when I told them the news. It was as if I’d just told them I was moving to Madagascar. …

I then told them about the quality of life in Oxford, and how far a dollar stretches. And the ease of doing business. When I show them pictures of my house, and get around to my property taxes, things get positively somber. On a home valued at $400,000, my tax tab is $2,000. My parents in New Jersey pay $12,000. And for a whole lot less house. On no land. When I remind friends about the pension liabilities they’ll be inheriting from the state unions, things get downright gloomy.

I can relate to everything Habeeb writes — but in reverse. When I moved to Silver Spring, Md., I had a hard time swallowing the price of rent — because it nearly matched my parents’ mortgage payment. And when I called the customer service departments of coast-based cable and electricity companies and got nowhere with the representatives who answered the phone, I found myself frequently saying in as kind a voice as I could muster, “I just moved here from Arkansas. And I’d really like to be able to tell my friends and family back home that y’all are just as friendly and helpful as Southerners have a reputation for being.” At every turn, in other words, I was reminded that I was a long way from where I grew up. (I was going to say, “a long way from the South,” but, technically, Maryland is still the South — it’s featured in Southern Living, after all. And wasn’t the nation’s capital situated on the Potomac precisely as a concession to the southern states?)

That’s not to say I didn’t experience a new kind of camaraderie with fellow Metro riders when we all faced a broken escalator out of the subway station. Nor is it to say D.C. didn’t substantially unravel my OCD by giving me a chance to observe it in the high achievers all around me. Above all, it’s not to say I wasn’t stimulated by new ideas and engaging conversation morning, noon and night. Coastal cities have their advantages, from public transportation and easier international travel to endless restaurant options and topic-rich, thought-provoking public lectures (seriously, one of my favorite elements of the city!). Especially in what I think of as “The Big Three” (NYC, L.A. and D.C.), living in a city might mean you pass famous and powerful people on the sidewalk, have a chance to voice your ideas to someone who might actually be able to do something about them, or wake up one morning to the startling realization that the distance between your dreams and reality isn’t actually so great as you thought it was.

But the point is, the magic of those “quintessential” cities has already been brought vividly to life for all of us — even those of us who’ve never lived in them — by books and TV shows, songs and movies. Hollywood and Broadway — plus all the most prominent recording and publishing companies — are located in those places.

The advantages of the South — especially the advantages of the 21st century South — are less well known (and, somehow, Southern coastal cities are frequently overlooked as major cities). Oh, there are books and TV shows, songs and movies about Dixie — but, as Habeeb points out, they’re often misleading caricatures or dwell too heavily on the South’s past. Little has been done to update the popular image of the region, which is now economically inviting and culturally reassuring — perhaps because those who spin popular images, from the president to junior reporters, haven’t taken the time to really understand the South for themselves.

That happens to be Habeeb’s thesis:

Americans, black and white alike, are moving in record numbers to a part of the country where taxes are low, unions are irrelevant, and people love their guns and their faith. And yet we have heard hardly a peep about this great migration from our nation’s public intellectuals.

Why? Because their ideological prejudices won’t permit them to admit the obvious. They’d prefer to focus their research on the pre-1970s South because they are more comfortable with — and more invested in — that old narrative, while this new one marches on right under their noses. And their keyboards.

And so it is with a sense of puzzlement that this Jersey boy turned Mississippian watches the decision making of President Obama. Millions of Americans may have voted for him in 2008, but millions have been voting with their feet, and he doesn’t seem the least bit interested in understanding why. …

He should ask Americans like me who’ve moved South why we did it. And he should be especially interested in understanding why African Americans are fleeing his home city of Chicago for the South, too.

If he dared to ask, he’d learn that we are all fleeing liberalism and chasing economic freedom, just as our immigrant parents and grandparents did. …

It turns out that white Yankee migrants like me, African American migrants from Chicago, and businessmen owners in Illinois and around the world, see something in the South that novelists, journalists, academics, and our current president cannot.

The future.

Truth is, all joking aside, it’s a shame to keep it secret.

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What do you suggest a foreigner should see?

Fortunata on September 29, 2011 at 10:06 PM

.
The Mississippi Delta & New Orleans
The Everglades
Key West
Savannah, GA
Atlanta, GA & the Aquarium
Charleston, SC
Ft. Sumter, SC
Chimney Rock, in NC
The Great Smokies, from GA to VA
Myrtle Beach, SC
Jamestown, VA
Williamsburg, VA & the Wren Buildings on the W&M campus
I think there is a dinky aquarium in Sand Bridge, on the coast
Dam Neck, where the SeALs train
The Raven Bar & Restaurant, Atlantic Ave., Virginia Beach, VA
Fort Story & the 18th Century Cape Henry Lighthouse (1792)
Hampton Roads and the Route 5 James River historic plantations
Mt. Vernon, VA
The Confluence of the Potomac and the Shenandoah, Harper’s Ferry, WV
The Shenandoah Valley from Winchester to Natural Bridge, VA
Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA (on a football Saturday) then westward
Appalachian Trail for 50 miles, on foot
Great Falls, VA and Great Falls, MD
Washington, DC
Baltimore, MD, the Inner Harbor & Aquarium
.
Get back to me when you have done all of this…

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:37 PM

Ya know,

BierManVA on September 29, 2011 at 10:23 PM

I have this special wave that I use when I run across big-city yankee drivers as they weave in and out of traffic and cut me off. That is just to make them feel at home.

Old Country Boy on September 29, 2011 at 10:39 PM

After Jimmah Carter was through with our country there was no place to get a job in Wisconsin. In 1982 I moved to Houston, Texas. I learned to stand up when a lady excused herself or returned to the dinner table. Lessons learned in the south have been nothing but complimentary to my life as I approach sixty years.

It is NOTHING like Wisconsin….PACKERS, BREWERS, BADGERS, AND SCOTT WALKER!

psychocyber on September 29, 2011 at 10:41 PM

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:37 PM

You forgot one…..Monticello in Charlottesville, VA

Glad to say that I have been to many on your good list.

BierManVA on September 29, 2011 at 10:46 PM

This article is total BS.
 
David in ATL on September 29, 2011 at 10:09 PM

 
Agreed. This is clearly some paid-shill nonsense that doesn’t have a lick of truth in it.
 
Don’t believe the article. It’s all lies. Every bit. I can’t stress that enough. Lies. As are almost all of the posts except for that one that Bigot Ernie wrote and the one from the “I visited once and didn’t like it” guy. They’re right. 100%. It’s horrible down here. Teeming with meanness and stinkiness and bad food and ugly women. The best thing for you to do is shake your head in pity as you fly over us and say a little prayer of thanks that you live somewhere that’s so nice that you’d be a fool to leave and you know it.

rogerb on September 29, 2011 at 10:50 PM

When my Brooklyn Jewish wife agreed to marry me and move to Montgomery, AL, in 2000, several of her friends and family told her that the Klan would be waiting when she got off the plane. Grrrr!

As she puts it, there is no one as parochial and insular as a New Yorker.

OTOH, right after we moved to Plano TX in 2006, we took a picture of her with an Evile Black Rifle and sent it back to them. I understand the sounds of the heads exploding was epic….

SDN on September 29, 2011 at 10:51 PM

Turns out, the South is a pretty nice place to live

Of course it is, my mom lives here.

Knott Buyinit on September 29, 2011 at 10:51 PM

I’ve lived in South Carolina for two years, and I’ll never go back north again.

Ohio had its good points, but the unions are just killing everything. (oh — and the snow sucks too)

CambellBrown on September 29, 2011 at 10:52 PM

Glad to say that I have been to many on your good list.

BierManVA on September 29, 2011 at 10:46 PM

.
Thanks for expanding the list and correcting my oversight; Monticello is a very worthy destination.
.
This list was off the top of my head but as I was doing it I reminded myself that one of the blessings of our country is the grandeur of its natural beauty. We are soooooo fortunate, such an exceptional nation.

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:53 PM

But there are no mountains in the south. I mean, real mountains. Ones with glaciers on them. And snow. All year ’round.

I’ve seen the Smokies and the Catskills. Those are foothills.

theotherone on September 29, 2011 at 10:55 PM

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:53 PM

Yeah. So much here in the US. Still the place all want to come, even if they don’t admit it.

BierManVA on September 29, 2011 at 10:59 PM

Great thread. Smiled the whole time I read through it. uh, except for one idiot who needs to do some reading and traveling. (looking at you, ernesto)

itsacookbook on September 29, 2011 at 11:05 PM

There are already too many yankees down here completely changing the atmosphere of the south. For example, they always think they are smarter than us dumb rednecks and pride themselves on correcting the words that we use and even our accents! It is the same difference as going to Britain and telling the residents that lifts are actually elevators, and a loo is a bathroom. They come here to enjoy our beautiful moderate weather, but they haven’t figured out a way to get rid of the people that live here. If they could, I’m sure they would. The south is fast losing its graciousness, charm and hospitality because of these roaches. A pity.

theaddora on September 29, 2011 at 11:09 PM

NO NO NO Do not come South. It’s full of racists and rednecks and those awful conservatives. OMG, they actually have churches, and NASCAR, and baseball, and… It’s just awful. Run for your lives!!!

faraway on September 29, 2011 at 11:10 PM

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:37 PM

You forgot one…..Monticello in Charlottesville, VA

Glad to say that I have been to many on your good list.

BierManVA on September 29, 2011 at 10:46 PM

Grrrr.

Grand Caverns
DeGray Lake
Shreveport Opera House
Louisiana Downs
Ozarks

But there are no mountains in the south. I mean, real mountains. Ones with glaciers on them. And snow. All year ’round.

I’ve seen the Smokies and the Catskills. Those are foothills.

theotherone on September 29, 2011 at 10:55 PM

Silly story. My mom was from VA, and having moved to Louisiana, she was homesick. She spoke of mountains. My dad, a simple man, grabbed her one day and took her for a quick, romantic day-trip with a surprise at the end.

He stopped the car, took her out and beamed. “What is it?” she asked, looking around at pine trees.

He had to actually show her the curve of the road, explaining to her that they were at the top of the tallest hill in NW Louisiana :)

She was not impressed. (But she thought it was the sweetest thing she’s ever heard of.)

Axe on September 29, 2011 at 11:13 PM

Ernesto is a terrible bigot. Just wanted to say that. I’ve told him that before and he won’t learn.

juliesa on September 29, 2011 at 11:17 PM

Many years and many miles driving across the greater continental USA, I always could just feel the tension leave me when I crossed back over the Texas border, whether I was at the furthermost western border or shooting in from the ArkLaTex side.

Texas always felt like settling in with your wife on the couch; good to be home.

Texan on September 29, 2011 at 11:18 PM

Great thread. Smiled the whole time I read through it. uh, except for one idiot who needs to do some reading and traveling. (looking at you, ernesto)

itsacookbook on September 29, 2011 at 11:05 PM

Me too. Feel like I could live to fight another day after all.

Axe on September 29, 2011 at 11:19 PM

Texan on September 29, 2011 at 11:18 PM

God bless I-20 :)

Axe on September 29, 2011 at 11:22 PM

But there are no mountains in the south. I mean, real mountains. Ones with glaciers on them. And snow. All year ’round.
 
I’ve seen the Smokies and the Catskills. Those are foothills.
 
theotherone on September 29, 2011 at 10:55 PM

 
Yeah, not many glaciers down here as a general rule.
 
We’re blessed to be close to Mt. Mitchell here in western NC. It’s the highest point on the eastern side of our nation, but still probably just half the elevation of what you’re talking about.
 
It offers a fairly unique opportunity, though. Come the first week of October, you can drive up to the peak and see each stage of fall colors because of the elevation changes. Green at the bottom, bare branches at the top.
 
A full leaf season in, if you rush it, a half-day’s outing. Nice if you enjoy that kind of thing.

rogerb on September 29, 2011 at 11:23 PM

Southerners are bilingual – they speak English and Southern.

faraway on September 29, 2011 at 11:30 PM

Until you have suffered through 98 degree temps with 100 percent humidity and sweated through your business suit because your car a/c is broke, you ain’t lived!

Long live the (Air Conditioned) South!

BigAlSouth on September 29, 2011 at 11:35 PM

Many years and many miles driving across the greater continental USA, I always could just feel the tension leave me when I crossed back over the Texas border, whether I was at the furthermost western border or shooting in from the ArkLaTex side.
 
Texan on September 29, 2011 at 11:18 PM

 
You’ll get a nod from this Alabama boy. Years ago I took a month off and circled America, alone, on a non-interstate tent-camping/sightseeing tour in a cramped little red convertible foreign sports car.
 
I was repeatedly surprised when more than one huge, beat up farm truck with stickers of Calvin peeing on Ford/Chevy/Dodge logos would pass by and the drivers would give me a thumbs-up.
 
Everyone seems to want to make that sort of trip, but the Texans seemed to be the only folks who really embraced and understood it.

rogerb on September 29, 2011 at 11:42 PM

I’m a born and raised Middle Tennessean (and a black dude at that), and there ain’t no finer place to live than the south. So please let’s secure the Mason-Dixon line and do something about all these damyankees moving in! Unless of course they’re willing to adopt our values and culture — to learn the difference between bbq and a cookout (people please know that grilling some hot dogs outside is NOT bbq), to learn the shades of meaning between y’all and all y’all.

theblackcommenter on September 29, 2011 at 11:49 PM

I like Texas because we are actually a part of the South and the Southwest. I enjoyed living in New Mexico and Louisiana for a couple of years each, as well.
New Mexico is gorgeous. The culture of Louisiana is so special.

carbon_footprint on September 29, 2011 at 11:53 PM

the bartenders kicked people out at closing by pouring their drinks into a “go cup” so they could drink their alcohol on the way home or wherever. True story.
.
The allowed open container law was changed soon after I got there and it is now illegal to drink and drive.

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 9:18 PM

That was standard in Louisiana for a very long time. When I moved back to Texas (left when I was 5) in the early 1980′s and was at a bar having met new friends were going to another establishment, I did the standard thing. I drank up, then asked the bartender for another but in a “go cup” then got into an argument with him because he acted like he did not understand me. After 10 minutes the manager came out and said that I must be from Louisiana. I asked, how did you know that? He replied, because that is illegal here and no one knows what you are talking about.

Kermit on September 29, 2011 at 11:54 PM

Keep Lubbock flat!
*Seriously-Lubbock makes Chicago seem like Montana by comparison.*

annoyinglittletwerp on September 29, 2011 at 11:54 PM

Back in the 80s I could tell you Southern California is the best place on earth! LOL! Oh man. You gotta know, places change.

Apologetic California on September 29, 2011 at 11:58 PM

Ugh. We need to get laws into the books down here that Yankee transplants can’t vote until they’ve been down here 10 years or something. That way we’ve got some time before they ruin the area like they did their old home states.

Benaiah on September 30, 2011 at 12:01 AM

But there are no mountains in the south. I mean, real mountains. Ones with glaciers on them. And snow. All year ’round.

I’ve seen the Smokies and the Catskills. Those are foothills.

theotherone on September 29, 2011 at 10:55 PM

Yeah, not many glaciers down here as a general rule.

We’re blessed to be close to Mt. Mitchell here in western NC. It’s the highest point on the eastern side of our nation, but still probably just half the elevation of what you’re talking about.

It offers a fairly unique opportunity, though. Come the first week of October, you can drive up to the peak and see each stage of fall colors because of the elevation changes. Green at the bottom, bare branches at the top.

A full leaf season in, if you rush it, a half-day’s outing. Nice if you enjoy that kind of thing.

rogerb on September 29, 2011 at 11:23 PM

Not as tall as the Rockies for sure, but try running wild hogs with a pack of dogs on those ridges and your perspective will change somewhat.
Also the steepest mainline railroad grade in the U.S. runs (or is it dormant now?) from Melrose to Saluda, NC. Built the way it was because the eastern face of the Appalachians there rise sharply with little or no foothills.

listens2glenn on September 30, 2011 at 12:07 AM

I have lived in Virginia on the coast, I have lived in SoCal on the coast, Las Vegas NV, Kansas and of course Iowa. When ever I visited the south I felt at home (Iowa). Just like Iowa everyone was helpful and friendly. The cost of living in Iowa is very low, jobs are not that hard to come by even now. Iowa is a right to work state. I believe our unemployment is at a high of 6.1%. We do not have slums even in our largest cities, poorer sections yes but not ghettos. Many of those sections are older large houses that are being bought up and restored. I can walk my dog at night and not feel fear. Downside compared to the south, it gets fraking cold here in the winter! Where ever I have lived I have always missed Iowa. To be honest, I think I missed Iowans and the lifestyle more then anything. I know my neighbors, we wave and talk to each other. When I got real sick my co-workers, friends, family and neighbors made sure I wanted for nothing and at least one of them came to visit, cook and clean everyday. I did not ask one of them for help, they insisted. The only other place people acted like that was Virginia. Long live the south!

IowaWoman on September 30, 2011 at 12:13 AM

Not as tall as the Rockies for sure, but try running wild hogs with a pack of dogs on those ridges and your perspective will change somewhat.
Also the steepest mainline railroad grade in the U.S. runs (or is it dormant now?) from Melrose to Saluda, NC. Built the way it was because the eastern face of the Appalachians there rise sharply with little or no foothills.

listens2glenn on September 30, 2011 at 12:07 AM

My husband would like that–he loves trains.

I’ve seen the Canadian Rockies. They are very impressive…like the backbone of North America, stretching for miles north and south. But there’s almost too many of them to really grab your attention.

What the south needs to make it perfect (besides getting rid of the humidity and the bugs) are mountains like this:
http://glengarvin.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/MtRainier01.jpg

Or this:
http://www.latimes.com/media/photo/2010-03/52759034.jpg

(first is Mt. Rainier, Washington state, second is Mt. McKinley, Alaska.)

theotherone on September 30, 2011 at 12:22 AM

Jamestown, VA
Williamsburg, VA & the Wren Buildings on the W&M campus
I think there is a dinky aquarium in Sand Bridge, on the coast
Dam Neck, where the SeALs train
The Raven Bar & Restaurant, Atlantic Ave., Virginia Beach, VA
Fort Story & the 18th Century Cape Henry Lighthouse (1792)
Hampton Roads and the Route 5 James River historic plantations

Ahhh, home!!!!

Cindy Munford on September 30, 2011 at 12:28 AM

I was always amazed at people being amazed that we wave, say hi, smile, make eye contact, and even make conversation…to perfect strangers. I’ve never lived outside of Texas (Dallas-Lubbock-Denton-back in Dallas) and I always assumed everybody did this everywhere. I had no idea that this was a unique regional phenomenon.

anuts on September 30, 2011 at 12:36 AM

when we all faced a broken escalator out of the subway station.

An escalator can never break: it can only become stairs.
Mitch Hedberg

I love the south and have a few relatives in NC. When we were kids, in the summer my folks would drive down to Florida and we’d stop along the way in VA, NC, SC and GA. Beautiful country, friendly people. I do love upstate NY (except the winters are a pain) but I could easily retire down south. (I guess that would upgrade me from a Yankee to a damn Yankee, lol)

DrAllecon on September 30, 2011 at 1:06 AM

I grew up near Silver Spring, MD and moved to SC late in life — too late. The shift is like the bus ride in “The Great Divorce.”

Gawd I hate beltway traffic and the Silver Spring stretch is the worst part. The only redeeming part is seeing the words “Surrender Dorothy” on the railroad bridge as you approach the Mormon Temple.

Pythagoras on September 30, 2011 at 1:08 AM

Old Country Boy on September 29, 2011 at 10:00 PM

I loved reading about the Artillery Song on your blog. Very cool.

DrAllecon on September 30, 2011 at 1:09 AM

Must disagree with all youse guys. Lived in Georgia for two years and hated hated hated every minute of it. I resent being called a damn Yankee and I could not understand a word of that mushmouth talk. War between the states, my fanny. I also don’t like being called honey one minute after I meet you. When it rained, the red mud stained your clothes and shoes. Coral snakes in the yard and lizards in the house. Hamburgers fried in butter; greens (grass) requiring lots of hot sauce to cover the flavor; grits whatever the heck that is; southern cooking is over rated. But I live somewhere else now and I am over it. Just thought I would give y’all another view (and I am not a New Yorker).

AReadyRepub on September 30, 2011 at 1:21 AM

Must disagree with all youse guys. Lived in Georgia for two years and hated hated hated every minute of it. . . . .

AReadyRepub on September 30, 2011 at 1:21 AM

Sorry you feel that way.
But if you’re satisfied where you are now, I guess alls well that ends.

listens2glenn on September 30, 2011 at 1:45 AM

I’m a born and raised Middle Tennessean (and a black dude at that), and there ain’t no finer place to live than the south. So please let’s secure the Mason-Dixon line and do something about all these damyankees moving in! Unless of course they’re willing to adopt our values and culture — to learn the difference between bbq and a cookout (people please know that grilling some hot dogs outside is NOT bbq), to learn the shades of meaning between y’all and all y’all.

theblackcommenter on September 29, 2011 at 11:49 PM

Southwest Virginian here, tbc. You’re probably on the other side of Knoxville from me.

I just wanted to add to your post: sir and ma’am aren’t dirty words down here. They are either terms of respect, terms of endearment, or both (unless you’re PO’d at the boss, in which case all bets are off.)

I called my mother “Mom”, but when I was answering a question, it was either “yes ma’am” or “no ma’am”. (and I’d be in a pickle if I was telling “not-so”s.)

If I was answering to Dad, I was pretty much up the creek already, and deservedly so.

Hindsight is so clarifying.

hillbillyjim on September 30, 2011 at 3:17 AM

AReadyRepub on September 30, 2011 at 1:21 AM

To each their own.

It kinda sounds like you had your mind made up going in, though.

No sweat here if I’m wrong, but we-all can grow on ya if you give us a chance.

I resent being called a damn Yankee and I could not understand a word of that mushmouth talk.

Maybe you were called a “damn yankee because you went around with the attitude that all of your fellow Georgians were engaging in “that mushmouth talk”.

C’mon. There’s room enough in Georgia, and in the U. S . of A. for us all, if we learn how to behave ourselves with a little decorum and dignity.

hillbillyjim on September 30, 2011 at 3:25 AM

Colorado used to be a nice place to live too until all the idiot liberals from California moved here and turned the state purple.

jawkneemusic on September 30, 2011 at 3:29 AM

Colorado used to be a nice place to live too until all the idiot liberals from California moved here and turned the state purple.

jawkneemusic on September 30, 2011 at 3:29 AM

All I know is what South Park has told me. And John Denver. Looks beautiful though.

Axe on September 30, 2011 at 4:12 AM

A little over two weeks and I’ll be a Texan. I’m genuinely looking forward to it.

trigon on September 30, 2011 at 4:35 AM

But sadly, in the future the precious fresh water of the Great Lakes will only be matched by cities on the Mississippi in the south. Texas will need nuclear power on the coast for desalinization with water pipelines heading inland.
Not that I am an expert in this. But water is the future.

tomg51 on September 30, 2011 at 6:51 AM

When it rained, the red mud stained your clothes and shoes.

AReadyRepub on September 30, 2011 at 1:21 AM

It’s tough to be homeless anywhere I guess. :)

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 7:15 AM

This article is total BS.

David in ATL on September 29, 2011 at 10:09 PM

Too late. Incoming unemployed Obama voters in 5…4…3…

MNHawk on September 30, 2011 at 7:30 AM

I’ve never been to the deep south, but I’ve known many from there during my lifetime. At this point in my life I’m torn, I can not stand what my home state has become in the last 20 years. But running away to a place I’m sure I’d love will not solve any problems up here. I (for now) choose to stay here and fight for whats right and try to make a difference. If more people in Mexico (and other country’s) tried that approach they might make their home a better place. If it gets to a point where all is truly lost, my family and I (with our guns and faith) are heading south.

aceinstall on September 30, 2011 at 7:31 AM

Don’t encourage them, Tina. We already have enough Northerners living here as it is. :)

I was born in Georgia and I very well may die here too. Love it. Always have, always will.

RDE2010 on September 30, 2011 at 7:45 AM

I’ve been in Texas almost 13 years. I also spent a glorious childhood in Kentucky. Never moving up north again if I can help it.

Missy on September 30, 2011 at 8:03 AM

What’s all this nonsense about hot, humid weather? In the Keys it’s got cold enough these last few winters for the iguanas to fall out of the trees. If this global warming gets any worse I’m going to have to buy a furnace.

therealfranklin on September 30, 2011 at 8:04 AM

Like the old saying goes, home is where the heart is and if you are anywhere in the U.S. of A., you are a lucky son of a gun.

Cindy Munford on September 30, 2011 at 8:28 AM

Great…just what we need. More attention on the south. Ever chance I get, when I’m around “northerners”, I try to tell them they have it better up north, just in hopes of enforcing the stereotype so as to keep them up north.
PLEASE stay where you are. We already have problems with the liberals who have moved here saying BS like “well, where I came from we did X”. Well, if that is how you want to do it, PLEASE MOVE BACK!
We LIKE it the way it is here. It’s slow for a reason, because we LIKE IT that way. You northerners are like a lot of people, they screw up their cities with all of their liberal/socialist crap, then after they’ve blown up their areas, they move to a new area and start the process all over again. Like a bunch of frickin’ locusts.

p51d007 on September 30, 2011 at 8:35 AM

Like the old saying goes, home is where the heart is and if you are anywhere in the U.S. of A., you are a lucky son of a gun.

Cindy Munford on September 30, 2011 at 8:28 AM

Amen to that

tomg51 on September 30, 2011 at 8:38 AM

Like the old saying goes, home is where the heart is and if you are anywhere in the U.S. of A., you are a lucky son of a gun.

Cindy Munford on September 30, 2011 at 8:28 AM

This.

meoky on September 30, 2011 at 8:44 AM

p51d007 on September 30, 2011 at 8:35 AM

LOL!!! Don’t hold back.

Cindy Munford on September 30, 2011 at 8:50 AM

Don’t worry. As liberals flee liberal failing states, they will just work actively to undermine the communities they flee to & turn them into another liberal failed state.
It happened in WA, OR, ID, CO, MT and is now happening in ND SD etc.

Badger40 on September 30, 2011 at 8:54 AM

We LIKE it the way it is here. It’s slow for a reason, because we LIKE IT that way. You northerners are like a lot of people, they screw up their cities with all of their liberal/socialist crap, then after they’ve blown up their areas, they move to a new area and start the process all over again. Like a bunch of frickin’ locusts.

p51d007 on September 30, 2011 at 8:35 AM

Sorry pal, but “all of those people” who came to NC, pushed and succeeded to make NC a Republican state for the first time in 114 years…and this next election, most of the other rats will be swept out of office, including Perdue.
No, you say you “like it that way”, but here in NC, the “old boys” have made more money, have a better lifestyle, than ever before.
Oh, they gripe about the “good ol’ days”, but they love it when they look at the $50,000 and know, even now, it is worth $300,000…They love PPD, Corning, GE, all the benefits, all the jobs…welcome to modern world.
Sally’s tanning salon and gifts, with her girls sitting outside smoking and chewing, is gone…

right2bright on September 30, 2011 at 8:55 AM

Here is the beauty, for the amount I paid in monthly taxes and homeowner assessments in Ca, I am paying my mortgage, total including taxes.
1/2 acre, on a lake (great fishing from my dock for large mouth), canoeing (10 miles of), great neighbors, mix of north and south…Pig pick’in, Topsail oysters, outside grilling year round, 6 weeks of too much humidity a year, and the rest of the year, perfect. Year around tennis, great well built house, minutes from the ocean (80 degree water in the summer)…it couldn’t be better…

right2bright on September 30, 2011 at 9:00 AM

When I moved to Silver Spring, Md., I had a hard time swallowing the price of rent — because it nearly matched my parents’ mortgage payment.

I know what you mean. I was looking for a two bedroom apartment in the region of Silver Spring MD, and found that a year’s rent would generally run me more than half of what my father payed to build his rather spacious four bedroom house on 3/4 of an accer in Shingle Springs, CA the year I was born. Smaller houses here sell for ten times what Dad payed.

Count to 10 on September 30, 2011 at 9:03 AM

p51d007 on September 30, 2011 at 8:35 AM

That’s what happened up here in Maine, it was called progress. I call it a dam shame.

aceinstall on September 30, 2011 at 9:11 AM

Don’t worry. As liberals flee liberal failing states, they will just work actively to undermine the communities they flee to & turn them into another liberal failed state.
It happened in WA, OR, ID, CO, MT and is now happening in ND SD etc.

Badger40 on September 30, 2011 at 8:54 AM

The Peoples Republic of Austin, TX is a perfect example of this.

brtex on September 30, 2011 at 9:21 AM

to learn the difference between bbq and a cookout (people please know that grilling some hot dogs outside is NOT bbq)

theblackcommenter on September 29, 2011 at 11:49 PM

TBC – you are the best commentator EVAH on Hotair! Thank you! Thank You! Thank you!

(and if one is reading this and decides to have a REAL bbq, have Brunswick Stew too for the love of Pete)

Branch Rickey on September 30, 2011 at 9:29 AM

Get back to me when you have done all of this…

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:37 PM

Good and comprehensive list you have there. I would add…

The Okefenokee
Cumberland Island, GA
Emerald Coast beaches
Delta blues trail from Mississippi to Memphis
Any city home to a Southeastern Conference team on football gameday

GoodBrew on September 30, 2011 at 9:37 AM

I drive the 1500 miles from my summer home in Missouri to my place in Marathon Florida every fall and have enjoyed, since ’97, finding different routes – avoiding the interstates and prefering good state highways. One of my favorite stories of the trips happened just two years ago.

Stopping in a small town in NE Arkansas, for gas and coffee, the lady at the counter handed back my large travel cup and said, “That’ll be 27 cents, Hon.” Wide eyed and practically yelling I said, “27 cents?” Startled, and apparently thinking I was complaining, she gently replied, “Why yes, Sweetie, a quarter for me and two cents for the govenor!”

therealfranklin on September 30, 2011 at 9:40 AM

Proud Ozark-ian here. Springfield, MO is the World’s biggest little city. 250,000 people who all live like it’s Hannibal, MO (18,000ppl). On my street, my three closest neighbors all know my garage code, and I know theirs. We have block parties together, mow each others lawns when on vacation, and keep an eye on the kids as a whole. It’s awesome beyond words. Blessed doesn’t even begin to describe it.

Cizero on September 30, 2011 at 9:40 AM

I love Oklahoma for that reason alone. I’m from South Bend, Indiana, but the people are friendlier in OK. The cost of living is much lower, too.

Black Adam on September 30, 2011 at 9:54 AM

I have this special wave that I use when I run across big-city yankee drivers as they weave in and out of traffic and cut me off. That is just to make them feel at home.

Old Country Boy on September 29, 2011 at 10:39 PM

I’m from “NaJoyzy” but lived in Houston for four years, and Houston drivers ARE more courteous than up north. If a traffic light goes out in a thunderstorm, people treat it as a four-way stop and traffic flows smoothly–it would be chaos in Jersey!

Of course, the day there was a freak snowstorm in Houston, everybody in my carpool wanted the Yankee to drive. I wasn’t the fastest car on the road, but at least I stayed out of the ditch.

Y’all be happy down there!

Steve Z on September 30, 2011 at 10:12 AM

As a native South Carolinian, you all need to shut the hell up! The “Great Migration” is no problem until all those “from off” move in and want to recreate the messes they moved away from.

When I was a child in the sixties, our class rooms didn’t have air conditioning and heat was distributed by a grunting radiator over in the corner. The building itself looked more like an military barracks than a school. We had great books and great teachers who loved their jobs. If the romm got to be too kot near the end of the school year, the teacher would take the class outside under a spreading live oak tree draped in Spanish moss to mold our minds of mush in a late May spring breeze. We believed in God and coutry. We were led in prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance daily. We respected our elders and the Principal had a paddle he actually used hanging beside his desk on the wall. And somehow, we all came out edumocated purty well.

(A quick aside. Southerners have three types of Yankees:
1) A Yankee is a person from up North.
2) A damn Yankee is a person from up North here on vacation.
3) a god-damn Yankee is a person from up North who moves here.)

Everything was going along just fine until until this influx of g-d Yankees! Now schools have to be the finest buildings built. They have style and architecture and demand more and more tax payer dollars evey year for stupid things like a new coat of paint. You over hear conversations about “public transportation”(whatever that is”, the need for unions, why more Democrats or (GASP)Liberals aren’t elected to office, or why the roads aren’t in better condition.

So I’ll tell you what, speaking from my heart as a true Southerner… Kids don’t need some fancy-pants building for their schooling… they need a book, pencil and paper and a good teacher. That new coat of paint isn’t gonna jump off the wall and start doing “The Three Rs Dance”. I’ve got your “Public Transportation” right here…. ther’s nowhere in the South that you need to get where your feet, a bicycle, or a three hundred dollar “fishin’ car” won’t get you. Without unions we learned to WORK an honest day’s WORK for a fair amount of wages. Democrats and Liberals are what got yall in the damn messes you’re runnin’ away from… we have better sense than to give them power down here. And our roads were in fine shape…. until all you g-d Yankees showed up with your motor homes, trailers and U-Hauls.

But that’s what Yankees do… find a little piece of paradise, move in and turn it into the same crap hole they left. So, do us Southerners a favor…. Stay home next time.

Storybec on September 30, 2011 at 10:24 AM

I can’t talk about the south much – have only ever been to Tennessee for a few days. But my experiences out west (Montana, Wyoming) seem to be simliar to what you all (y’all!) are talking about! I was amazed at how friendly strangers were. Everywhere I went people would say howdy and start chatting to me. That never happens to me in Toronto.

CityFish on September 30, 2011 at 10:24 AM

I think the essence of the issue isn’t really about Yankees moving down here; as many have illustrated in their posts, for the most part we’ll greet you with open arms.

It’s about Assimilation.

When you come to Texas, by all means, be proud of your heritage, keep your individuality and I guarantee only the hard-heads here will critisize you for that. Most folks find your individual beliefs and ways a pleasant aspect of your overall character and if you are of a good nature and are fairly pleasant, we’ll like you fine.

But what we bristle at is folks who (to put it bluntly) come from a crap-hole and then proceed to implement the ways and attitudes that turned your former home into a crap-hole.

We kinda admire and grin at your tough “Jersey attitude” (quoting NJ Gov Christie), ’cause that shows grit. We don’t admire or want your social engineering experiments, demonizing of religon, race-baiting and especially your condensending attitude about our neighbors.

(On that last, I find I really don’t mind when folks think I’m not being smart, as I have enough humility to concede the possibility. I really get bowed up when I hear them mocking my fellow southerners.)

So I think the idea here is, please do come on down and settle in. Enjoy the South and get to work making it a great place to live. Be friendly and productive and we’ll all get along fine. Come swanning in and expect all of us to fall in line with your world-view and you will find yourself frustrated and unhappy.

Texan on September 30, 2011 at 10:47 AM

I could take a second look.

DarkCurrent on September 29, 2011 at 8:48 PM

You should.

ladyingray on September 30, 2011 at 10:56 AM

Things to add to the list:

Shindig on teh Green (Asheville),

new2wnc on September 30, 2011 at 11:05 AM

Things to add to the list:

Shindig on teh Green (Asheville),

new2wnc on September 30, 2011 at 11:05 AM

But that’s what Yankees do… find a little piece of paradise, move in and turn it into the same crap hole they left. So, do us Southerners a favor…. Stay home next time.

Storybec on September 30, 2011 at 10:24 AM

Put down your banjo, and come off of your front porch…see all those auto plants in your state? They pay taxes, if you would have “stayed the same” you would be the laughing stock of the U.S…and have the lowest income in the U.S.
You take the bad with the good, and your state has done well…more good than bad.
The “good ol’ days” weren’t so good pal…it wasn’t too many years ago, that you were still segregated, that “blacks new their place”, that state corruption was the standard, rather than the exception…
I told a group of MBA students that I lecture, the bumpers sticker on the back of the beat up pick up truck that states “I don’t care how you did it up north”, well, you better care if you want a better life, otherwise you will be driving a 10 year old pick up, empty beer cans in the back, smoking your camel’s, and hoping to make rent next month…

right2bright on September 30, 2011 at 11:14 AM

Washington DC: the perfect combination of Northern charm and Southern efficiency.

Glenside on September 30, 2011 at 11:14 AM

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:37 PM

Thank you. I’m going to save your list and check these places out for a holiday visit.

Fortunata on September 30, 2011 at 11:16 AM

Good and comprehensive list you have there. I would add…

The Okefenokee
Cumberland Island, GA
Emerald Coast beaches
Delta blues trail from Mississippi to Memphis
Any city home to a Southeastern Conference team on football gameday

GoodBrew on September 30, 2011 at 9:37 AM

.
Thanks! One last story and I am done:
I took my little cousin to The Okefenokee Swamp for a day to tour it. During the tour, there was a German-speaking group also touring and we were all on the wooden walkway into the swamp. The German speaker was wondering “Where are the alligators?” when I noticed a set of parallel eyes poked up out of the pond-scum-covered water and said to him, “See those little eyes right over there, floating on top of the water with a big tail behind them?” and the guy screamed “Ally-Gatore!”, took three pictures real fast and ran screaming back down the walkway “Ally-Gatore! Ally-Gatore!”
.
I thought the guy was nuts or scared but he just wanted to share with his friends. They all came running up and took pictures for five minutes solid. Funny how foreigners are, sometimes.
.
We also got to see The Okefenokee Joe Show at The Okefenokee Swamp Nature Center. He had his trained, pet Cotton Mouth Moccasin which he antagonized into attacking him (ever seen a snake jump? It’s really scary!) and his act literally had people up on their chairs for fear that snake would be on the floor next to them in a twinkling. It was great!

ExpressoBold on September 30, 2011 at 11:16 AM

Get back to me when you have done all of this…

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:37 PM

Skip Myrtle beach, and substitute Kill Devil Hills, the outer banks.

right2bright on September 30, 2011 at 11:34 AM

Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA (on a football Saturday) then westward

ExpressoBold on September 29, 2011 at 10:37 PM

Especially this week, when the Hokies take on Clemson in a night game! I would add pretty much any farmers market in any city or town in the South.

hawksruleva on September 30, 2011 at 11:51 AM

So I think the idea here is, please do come on down and settle in. Enjoy the South and get to work making it a great place to live. Be friendly and productive and we’ll all get along fine. Come swanning in and expect all of us to fall in line with your world-view and you will find yourself frustrated and unhappy.

Texan on September 30, 2011 at 10:47 AM

Well said. Northerners might want to consider why they moved south. If you start increasing the size of local and state governments, and imposing more rules and restrictions, pretty soon the state you moved to for relief will be a lot like the state you left.

hawksruleva on September 30, 2011 at 11:54 AM

I just discovered how hot Tina Korbe is. Wow.

Anyway, the South is a great place to live, even though the pizza, Chinese food and bagles suck down here.

toliver on September 30, 2011 at 12:00 PM

I have always made it a point never to live North of Chattanooga!! Don’t know anybody who went North to retire………..

ultracon on September 30, 2011 at 12:09 PM

Skip Myrtle beach, and substitute Kill Devil Hills, the outer banks.

right2bright on September 30, 2011 at 11:34 AM

.
No, no, no, she can do both. Besides, Myrtle is just north of Charleston, SC on 17, an easy reach with a nice drive off the crazy I-95 corridor.

ExpressoBold on September 30, 2011 at 12:14 PM

Down here in Alabama, there’s kudzu that grows so fast it’s a threat to small dogs and subcompact cars.

Stay away!!!!

Jason Coleman on September 30, 2011 at 12:29 PM

my dad jokingly warned me not to hype home too much. “If they find out just how nice we have it down here, all your new East Coast friends will want to move to the South and our cost of living will go up,” he teased.

I’m sure you know your Pa alot better than I do, but I suspect he wasn’t joking and he wasn’t teasing. I’ve stopped defending the south to people who have never been here, and I’m in one of the most cosmopolitan areas in the south (Rocket City!!!).

I’m also a transplant from SoCal. After almost 2 decades away from that hellhole, I thank God every day for the ability he gave me to see what was happening at the time in both places.

So please, stop trying to encourage bigots like ernesto to even visit. We don’t want him here and he don’t wanna be here. Everyone wins.

runawayyyy on September 30, 2011 at 1:20 PM

I have NEVER had a guest from anywhere who didn’t absolutely love Georgia. I’ve introduced more than I remember to Stone Mountain in particular. I always got a kick out of watching them eat their first grits, brunswick stew and SWEET tea! :-)

DanaSmiles on September 30, 2011 at 1:22 PM

Since Iowa has no NFL team, the Iowa Hawks dominate. We still cheer on ISU, and UNI unless they are playing our beloved Hawks. A cable company once threatened to not play U of I football games unless it got higher rates. Let’s just say they did not raise rates and spent millions on PR due to the loss of customers for even suggesting Iowans would miss a Hawks game. It would be like a Green bay cable company holding Packers games hostage for higher rates. When the Hawks are playing you can’t miss the game, It is on in the grocery stores, gas stations, radio, TV, all bars, gyms, malls, pretty much any retail outlet. If you are working during a game it is a given it will be at least be played on the radio for you. If you want to watch the game live…good luck, they are sold out for at least the next 5 years!

IowaWoman on September 30, 2011 at 1:54 PM

Great. Just great, Tina. I’d just uncorked the wine and cued up some Mozart to enjoy this great fall weather out on the veranda. Now I’m gonna have to drag out the clan robe and sit on my “front porch” listening to Hank Williams Jr while drinking beer and yelling at cars ’till they scamper back northward again. PLUS, I’m gonna have to fire up the rollback to bring that old 74 Pontiac back to the front yard. Nothing I can do about having already mowed the weeds that had grown up around it, I suppose. My weekend is shot! Thanks a lot, Tina.

mugged on September 30, 2011 at 2:09 PM

But there are no mountains in the south. I mean, real mountains. Ones with glaciers on them. And snow. All year ’round.

I’ve seen the Smokies and the Catskills. Those are foothills.

theotherone on September 29, 2011 at 10:55 PM

No, those are just mountains that are considerably older than the Rockies.

The Appalachians are believed to have been the highest mountains on earth roughly 460 million years ago during the Ordovician Period

The Rocky Mountains were formed from 80 million to 55 million years ago by the Laramide orogeny.

hillbillyjim on September 30, 2011 at 2:16 PM

‘nough said.

hillbillyjim on September 30, 2011 at 2:36 PM

‘nough said.

hillbillyjim on September 30, 2011 at 2:36 PM

Old mountains are soooo much nicer to live on then those Rocky new ones. :~)

IowaWoman on September 30, 2011 at 2:41 PM

I didn’t find it particularly appealing on my one visit.

I’ve come to the conclusion that the NE is a nice place to visit, but not a good place to live. The South is not so great to visit, but a better place to live. (The benefits of the south are not felt most strongly on a visit–low taxes, for example. The cons of living in the NE are not felt on a visit either–high taxes, for example.)

I completely agree with clearbluesky and whatcat. Lived in Texas for over 20 years, and it has gone downhill so bad–at least the DFW suburban area. My husband and I moved into a very nice, quiet apartment complex back in 2007. By the time we moved out two years later we had neighbors having shouting matches with each other from their patios in the middle of the night, vandalism, and the police visiting just about every single weekend. The change in that area since I was growing up there is remarkable. So crowded, so much traffic, crabby people, long lines, constant construction…we love Texas but we were so happy to escape. I hope the state recovers, it’s going to be such a shame if the libs ruin it, and it is not looking good right now.

I’ve lived in rural Illinois, suburban Texas, New York City, and Middle America. I love Middle America the best.

Polynath on September 30, 2011 at 3:30 PM

American by birth, Southern by the grace of God.

By the way, what’s the difference in a Yankee and a damm Yankee?

Yankees only come to visit.

NoFanofLibs on September 29, 2011 at 6:49 PM

LOL

This d@mn Yankee moved to the northernest southern state of Maryland. It’s okay but he wished he could have gone souther. There are mostly libs here.

shick on September 30, 2011 at 3:50 PM

The place to live right now is Virginia. There is actually an economy worth talking about in VA.

zerodamage on September 30, 2011 at 4:21 PM

By the way, what’s the difference in a Yankee and a damm Yankee?

Yankees only come to visit.

NoFanofLibs on September 29, 2011 at 6:49 PM

Yankee’s are headed north on I-95.

BobMbx on September 30, 2011 at 4:34 PM

The Rocky Mountains were formed from 80 million to 55 million years ago by the Laramide orogeny.

hillbillyjim on September 30, 2011 at 2:16 PM

Yeah, that was a tough day. The cable was out for like, an hour.

BobMbx on September 30, 2011 at 4:35 PM

Wanna make a yankee sick?

Serve up some cornbread and brown beans.

My cousin-in-law (a yankee), nearly gagged when he discovered what Mamaw had made for lunch. From scratch.

BobMbx on September 30, 2011 at 4:40 PM

My wife and I live in Tennessee and maintain an active cattle and crops (presently cotton) farm which straddles the Mississippi-Tn border.

We go to Manhatten for theatre, the arts, and events, but I can’t stay on that island for very long.

I am quite uncomfortable with not being able to carry a gun, which I regard as a virtual accessory item, but, most of all, I don’t like the frenetic pace of the “City” and I tire of the pervasive boorishness that so many New Yorkers find charming.

I also find the narcissism (you know, men with garbage in their hair, which is invariably flipped up in the middle, and men and women who wear uber-expensive clothing) that I see in every direction to be a bore.

And don’t even mentioned that God-foresaken statue of General Sherman on a horse. I would like to drag it away with my Ford F 150 and dump it in the East River.

I have practiced law for several decades and my wife is a shop owner.

We have a very blessed, and quintessentially Southern, life – in large part because we live in an area where manners, gentility and civility are a way of life.

The South has also not been secularized. My wife is Protestant and I am Catholic, but most people we know pursue an active relationship with God, whether on their own or in their church or synagogue.

I would not dream of walking in front of my wife, cursing in mixed company or reamining seated when a lady enters the room. Nor would I tolerate someone who attempted to misbehave in front of my wife.

I like to shoot guns, go four wheeling on the farm, and go to all types of car races, football games, boxing matches, and country and rock concerts, which makes me a fairly prototypical southern man.

I have had gay friends my whole life, but I don’t accept the social mores reflected on network television (the normalization of overt sexuality and vulgarity) and would not dream of raising a child with the values of anyone remotely associated with NBC.

And when I die, I will be buried in the family plot along with a Colonel from the Mississippi Cavalry.

Our life is good.

molonlabe28 on September 30, 2011 at 4:52 PM

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