Sunday, March 8, 2015

A Southern Girl's Smile and Hair Color May be Fake, but her Silver and Pearls Must be Real

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Back when I got married, for southern girls (and maybe northern girls, too, but I don't recall knowing any) registering for silver and china was a vital step in the wedding prep. In my case, picking out china and silver is nearly all I recall about the months before the wedding.  Strasbourg was my mother's pattern and, in my opinion, incomparably lovely.  My groom agreed, so that's what we chose.

There's a tongue in cheek section of the Southern Belle Primer that describes young ladies according to their silver pattern.  According to the author, a Miss, or perhaps Mrs., Schwartz (but, certainly not Ms.), this is Me, based on my choice of a silver pattern.:  "Strasbourg girls are traditionalists and just a bit formal. As good Southern girls, they are entranced with anything that’s festive and use their good silver almost all the time. Southern men love girls who pick Strasbourg because when Strasbourg girls bring out the good silver, they also bring out the good food. They don’t mix well with boys whose mothers have Buttercup. They will both always fight for control."

And, to think, up to now, I've relied upon my personality type to tell me who I am.  How have I managed?  I beg to differ on Miss Schwartz' analysis.  Not festive.  Not a cook.  I don't fight for control.  (Like to have the last word?  Maybe.)  Ever since I read the description in my mother's copy of the book, twenty years ago, I've identified more with the Chantilly profile which says, "Don't let all that sweetness fool you.  Chantilly girls were often fast in high school."  Haha.

I'm not a "Southern women" in the context in which it's presented in the book, (don't get me started on sororities) but "my people" come from Mobile, a city that prides itself on its Southernness.  Not only are my pearls real, but they belonged to my grandmother and, better still, their lustre is enhanced by a poem from the lovelorn beau who gave them to her, as related in this previous post.  

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