Yesterday Hoiyin Ip, a friend and fellow photog of mine wrote an article for Eastcreek Photography detailing life in California and today it's my turn to write an article for her blog.
Trading Spaces: Ala-Freakin'-Bama
Lets face it, Alabama gets a bad rap. Most people have an image of Alabama in their head and it seems to not be so good. I often wonder if we don't bring that on ourselves. Think about it...anytime someones being interviewed on TV it's always the redneck that's missing half his teeth. Yep, that's the guy they always interview when a tornado whips through our state. And, it never fails... he lives in a trailer park! But, believe me when I say, we have come a long way! We no longer have outhouses (Surprise! Indoor plumbing is now here!), we don't spend our weekends gathered around the moonshine still, and the good old boy mentality has been dead for years! Alabama, although we may still be a little behind when it comes to embracing new idea's, is now in the 21st Century! But, that doesn't mean we have changed our way of life completely.
Here in Ala-Freakin'-Bama college football rules! Whether you're born here or decide later in life to make 'Bama your home you must make the all-important decision...you must choose your colors! Orange & Blue makes you an Auburn Tiger fan, Crimson & White makes you an Alabama fan. We live, breathe, eat college football! And, this isn't just during football season. This rivalry is strong 365 days a year! And, Alabama & Auburn fans are the most loyal fans on the planet! Watch out Pasadena... Bama fans are on their way because the Tide faces off against the Texas Longhorns this week for the National Championship! You may get the rare opportunity to witness that loyalty first hand!
Life in Ala-Freakin'-Bama moves at a slower pace than in most parts of the country. There's rarely a rush to get anywhere and it's not unusual to strike up a conversation with someone that you have never met. Alabamians by nature are friendly! Or, put in a different way, are nosey! They like to know your business! But that's just part of their charm!
Once you strip away those that live in trailer parks you will find that most Alabamians enjoy wide open spaces! The goal is to build bigger homes and own as much property as possible! A 2000 sq. ft. home is now considered small, but the good news is unless you live on one of Alabama's beautiful lakes, or on the Gulf of Mexico, property is well below the National average. So, feel free to buy a few acres and build that 5000 sq. ft. home!
Now, I'll let y'all in on a little secret...when it comes to food Alabama knows how to keep it's citizens "healthy." We like everything deep fried (even Oreo's) and health conscious restaurants are basically unheard of! There's a barbecue joint on nearly every corner and sweet tea is the choice when you find yourself thirsty. Oh, I'm not talking about tea that's been sweetened; I'm talking about Southern Sweet Tea! Restaurants make it 5 gallons at a time. To every 5 gallons of tea they add 5 pounds of sugar! Pour it over a glass of ice and there you have it! Southerners favorite beverage! Imagine if you will sticking a straw into a syrup bottle! Yeah! Now you get the picture!
So, in closing I would have to admit that we here in Alabama are responsible for the bad rap that we get, but I hope you will remember this: Alabama is unique! Winding roads and the color green for as far as the eye can see is something everyone should experience. Our beaches are among the top in the country and the people of Alabama will always be there to lend a helping hand. Children here are still safe playing outside and catching fireflies on a hot, summer night still ranks number one!