Grinning & Grabbing

The typical picture painted of a “bubba” includes dirty overalls, a short haircut, work boots and a wad of tobacco firmly implanted in the left cheek. Everyone knows that a real bubba can chew tobacco and drink Budweiser beer with no danger of mixing the juice with the alcohol.

In the usual scenario bubba is probably driving a beat up Ford pickup truck with a decal on the window of a little boy taking a leak on his least favorite NASCAR vehicle number. The truck will always be equipped with a gun rack and if the owner is prosperous a spotlight will be attached for shining deer after dark. (For those un-indoctrinated to deer hunting, the spotlight is used to illuminate the deer and render the beast temporarily paralyzed so that bubba can get off a good shot). The practice is illegal and every October and November several bubbas are introduced to the fine dining available at their local country jail as a result of the “shining.”

The inside of Bubbas vehicle will be filled with a variety of snuff cans, beer cans, McDonald hamburger wrappers, empty potato chip bags and a couple of empty coke bottles. In addition the glove box will be filled with several rounds of ammunition and at least a 3 inch knife. The rear of the pickup will have the obligatory tool box and numerous tools and devices that Bubba may use in his day to day work activities. (Note: several of these tools will have broken handles). More likely than not their will also be a dog, usually a lab or pit bull, although the lineage of the dogs may be in question.

Now that we have painted the usual Hollywood or television picture of Bubba let me offer a more realistic description.

The typical southern bubba will be dressed in freshly laundered khakis or blue jeans accompanied by either a polo shirt or a pressed button down. His feet will be sporting either boat shoes or loafers and if it is Spring or Summer he may choose to be sans socks. Tobacco is a thing of his past and he has taken to drinking Miller Light or whatever import was on sale at the local Kroger or Wal-Mart.

Bubba is probably driving a truck more expensive than Volvo’s, 3 Series BMWs and even more than the new line of Mercedes.  (Mercedes has managed to join the league of inexpensive mass produced cars for the masses)  The truck will have a “W” sticker on the back and most likely the bumper tag from his University on the front or in a window decal on the back.

Bubba likes to go hunting occasionally just to get back to his roots. This hunting may be on leased property where he and his buddies have a deer camp. The camp is generally not used for hunting but rather for drinking and reminiscing about past conquests and plans for retirement. The thrill of sleeping in the woods in order to get in a good days hunting have long been overtaken by the desire to sleep in a warm bed with a good woman, so bubba will take his leave of the camp in the early afternoon and journey back home where he will share a good meal with his peer group and drink wine and Scotch rather than sit by a fire and swill beer with the boys.

The present day southern bubba works in a variety of occupations including the professional ranks. Some Northerners and a few individuals from the South confuse the term Bubba with redneck, good ole boy or some other commonly used derogatory term. I am here to tell you that bubba is nothing to be ashamed of. Bubbas were most likely Boy Scouts and members of the MYF or BSU and might have even gone to (God save us) Catholic School. Again, for those who are uninformed MFY is Methodist Youth Fellowship and BSU is the Baptist Student Union. Remember in the deep South you were most likely Methodist or Baptist because these were the two physical churches that dominated the most prominent landscape in any downtown region of most Southern Cities. The Catholic Church although prominent in some areas, Savannah, Charleston, New Orleans is of little consequence in the rural South.

Regardless of his outward demeanor and dress the usual Southern bubba served in some branch of the armed forces and although he is extremely loyal to the Stars and Stripes you most likely do not want to downplay the importance of the Confederate battle flag. A lot of second rate organizations attempt to use the Confederate flag as their own and hold rallies while waving the flag and speaking disparagingly about cultural changes in our country. Here again we have an incorrect stereotype concerning Southern heritage and the real meaning behind the Confederate flag. The whole concept of the Confederacy was not to deprive minorities of any rights, hell, the average Confederate soldier (Yankee soldiers too) was uneducated and fighting for his country, not because he was trying to maintain the practice of slavery. A vast majority of those fighting and consequently those killed did not own slaves and were not much better off than the slaves themselves. Bubba in 1860-1865 was fighting because he was loyal to the South, and NOT what the privileged land owners were afraid of loosing.

Bubba’s never have internal conflicts concerning the treatment of women, children, small animals or anyone who cannot defend or otherwise take care of themselves. The obligatory “can of whoop ass” will be opened on those who insist on mistreating anyone or thing that may fall in these categories. Simply put, bubba sees no excuse for anyone beating up on a woman, (although some women can damn sure whip most bubbas.) picking on a child in any derogatory manner, picking on those less fortunate either physically, mentally or financially and for damn sure never beat or kick bubba’s dog or his friends dogs or any dog he may know. Most dogs are one of God’s gentlest creatures and deserve a pat on the head and perhaps a good belly rub but definitely not a whipping or beating unless bubba sees fit to perform discipline.

All of us who recognize the term bubba as one of friendship and love also realize…..

Life ain’t brain surgery.

Bubba Terry

If you have daughters, want to have daughters or are on the verge of having a son-in-law, you owe it to yourself to read the following. Regardless of what you may be told there are only two types of fathers of the bride. Those who pay for receptions and those who are glad they did not have to pay.  I speak with some authority here as both of my daughters had rather large weddings and big, boisterous receptions.

As the father of the bride your responsibility includes the following: Shut Up, Show Up and Pay Up.  Remember those three terms and you will maintain a happy relationship with your wife, your daughter, your family and your daughter’s new family. It ain’t brain surgery.

Shut Up

When your future son-in-law’s mother wants to publish the wedding invitation in the local small town newspaper don’t panic.  I told my daughter and future son-in-law that I would have two no-neck thugs dressed in tuxes checking invitations at the door of the reception.  This comment cost me in ways you do not want to know.

Show Up

As father of the bride you must meet and greet all the attendees at the reception.  This involves a lot of handshaking (Grinning & Grabbing) and you do not want to know where some of those hands have been lately.  You also will have the opportunity to hug all of the ladies.  This is a two-edged sword.  Hugging the young and well endowed females is fun as they often wear low cut dresses and enjoy full frontal hugs.  Your friends and entire family will watch your every move and report every indiscretion.  The other side of the sword is the hugs with the older ladies who use too much perfume and press you close to their aging bosoms while telling you how beautiful the bride and your wife look.

Pay Up

The pay up portion is the most painful.  You will look at every half eaten tidbit and bemoan the fact that someone took one bite from a $5.00 hors’d’ourve.  Your friends will slap you on the back and rave over the fact that you are financing their drinking binge. The 4 bottles of wine you ordered for 400 guests runs out in 30 seconds and by the end of the evening your alcohol count is at 90 bottles of wine and 3 kegs of beer plus a few mixed drinks.  The band informs you that they played an hour over the contract and they want more money and then your daughter runs to you with open arms, gives you a kiss and says thank you for a wonderful evening.  More wine anyone!!!