mellicious: pink manicure (fall landscape)
[personal profile] mellicious
I was reading about Skybus in the Wall Street Journal, and first thing you know I've talked to Rob and we've decided we're going to fly Skybus the next time we go to Ohio. I checked, and by going on the right days we could currently both fly round-trip for less than $200, if we're careful about what days we pick. Skybus' hub is Columbus, which is where we almost always fly to, anyway - but there's a big catch, for us, and that's that they don't fly to Texas at all, so far. So we would have to drive to Biloxi, MS, which is a good way but not further than I'm willing to drive - once, anyway. I'm not saying I'll ever want to do this again but I'm willing to try it once. It's a drive I'm comfortable making, and for that matter it's not any further out of the way than flying to Chicago like we did last year was. And I haven't been to Biloxi in years and years, since before all those casinos were there; I'm kind of curious about what it looks like nowadays anyway. This will end up costing considerably more than $200, of course, but any other round trip flight we could get would be $200 each on a really good day, so we still come out ahead. Even $200 flights are getting very hard to find now. And if gas goes up more it will only get worse. We haven't booked the tickets yet - it's not until April we're looking at - but I think we will soon.

Of course, the thought of going to Biloxi brings up my deep-seated distrust of the whole Deep South. And I kinda had this on my mind a bit already, for various reasons. Now as most southerners would tell you, Texas is South but not Deep South, except maybe in the rural parts of deep East Texas (aka the Piney Woods). To my mind, Cajun Louisiana is for most purposes a whole different culture, and is likewise exempted. On the other hand, the north half of Louisiana is a hotbed of rednecks, in my experience, and is most definitely not. (Although the whole question of rednecks is a whole can of worms, really, because god knows Texas isn't lacking in rednecks, either - they're just a little different brand of redneck. But then, most non-Southern parts of the US have their fair share, too.) I'm not saying that that makes us superior, you understand, just different.

Anyway, even if it's not the Deep South, Texas was still a Confederate state, and I was pretty much raised on that idiotic myth of the Lost Cause, as just about everybody my age was - and, well, I already called it idiotic so I think you've got the idea about what I think of it. Buncha baloney, is what it is, and racist to boot, of course. And I get increasingly impatient with people who perpetuate it. It's gotten pretty uncommon here, but over towards Mississippi and Georgia, I think you still see it a lot. I have gotten where I won't do business with any place that uses names like "Dixie" and "Bonnie Blue" or worse, something like "General Lee." (I have been getting mail from a "Bonnie Blue Quilts" due to a mailing list I'm on - that's the other piece of what brought out this little rant.) I suspect that for at least some of the merchants who use names like that, it's more a misguided attempt at southern pride than outright racism. But I still think they ought to think twice and three times about it, because I'm sure I'm not the only person who's turned off.

(I can't seem to type "Biloxi" - every time it comes out as "Bixoli" or something similar.)

I have to say that the best thing about the south - Sweet Tea - has been spreading this way, the last few years. More and more restaurants have it. Right when I go on Weight Watchers, of course. (That may not entirely be a coincidence.)

Yet another meme:
You Are 72% Open Minded

You are a very open minded person, but you're also well grounded.
Tolerant and flexible, you appreciate most lifestyles and viewpoints.
But you also know where you stand firm, and you can draw that line.
You're open to considering every possibility - but in the end, you stand true to yourself.

I called my dad and told him no, we weren't coming at Thanksgiving, but that we appreciated the invitation and maybe next year, when we're not in the nesting phase with our new house, we will actually come. I think I need to talk more about my dad, really, but not right now. I have just been through a protacted battle in the Catacombs of Kanthrax (I'm not sure that's spelled right, but whatever.) It took most of the evening, but we conquered in the end and came back victorious with piles of loot, so w00t!

Date: 2007-11-14 05:10 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Interesting. I graduated from Harrison Central High School in Gulfport. It isn't nearly as bad now as it was when I was growing up. Also, the whole coast is trashed. Last time I went (a year ago?) it still looked like a war zone. People were still in tents and trailers.

I didn't know Bonnie Blue was a Confederacy thing.

Date: 2007-11-14 02:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yeah, there was a song about the "Bonnie Blue Flag" - but I think people nowadays mostly know that phrase from Gone With the Wind.

I started to mention that I was also wondering about how they were recovering from Katrina over there. You only hear about New Orleans, most of the time. I remember going through that area a year or so after that other big hurricane - was that Camille? I get all those C names mixed up - and it was still a mess then too. I was 11 or so but I remember it vividly.

Date: 2007-11-14 02:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I actually know of an artist whose name (I think her given name) is Bonnie Blue. She's very good.

Camille was the other monster storm. And man, don't even get me started on the disparity between the NOLA victims and the MS victims of Katrina. It's sad. I think in a little snit of cultural discrimination, the country just kind of wrote off southern Mississippi. It's a shame.

Date: 2007-11-14 05:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The song goes, "We are a band of brothers, native to the soil, fighting for the property [i.e., slaves] we gained by honest toil. And when our rights were threatened, the cry rose near and far: Hurrah for the Bonnie Blue Flag that bears a single star. Hurrah, hurrah, for Southern Rights hurrah. Hurrah for the Bonnie Blue Flag that bears a single star." Sickening. (And my brain continues to amaze me that I remember that from an album of Civil War songs I had 35 years or so ago.)

Have you read Confederates in the Attic by Tony Horwitz? It's about 10 years old, and it does an excellent job of addressing the continuing cultural resonances of the Civil War.

Date: 2007-11-14 06:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Have you read Confederates in the Attic by Tony Horwitz?"

I have no idea about Mel - at least she never commented when I posted about the book - but I loved it.

Date: 2007-11-14 08:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
No, I haven't read it - I need to. I am very well-read on the war itself but not at all so on the aftermath.

Robert has me beat, all I knew was the chorus, the "hurrah, hurrah, for southern rights" part. I know a bunch of other songs of the era but not that one. (Wanna know the words to "Somebody's Darling" or "Kathleen Mavourneen"? I'm your girl.)

Date: 2007-11-15 02:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It's a fast read and won't take much time, and it's really, really good.

My brain reminded me that there's a Billy Bragg song that refers to "Rally Round the Flag," one of the Union songs on that album. I amazed my law school roommate 20 years ago (who, unlike me, is a serious musicophile, if that's a word) by telling him the reference. He had no idea and was amazed I knew something about music that he didn't.

Date: 2007-11-15 03:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm amused that every time I have to fly anywhere these days I have to fly from Gulfport/Biloxi to Houston or DFW, and you have to come from Texas to fly.

Btw, if you need a place to rest along that long drive, I live right off I-10. Just sayin'. ;)

We are quite substantially rebuilt, even from a year ago. The trash has been cleaned up, and many of the buildings that have needed to be dealt with have come out of insurance limbo and are either being refurbished or demolished. The drive down 90 is nowhere near as picturesque as it was before the storm, but I don't think it ever will be again, frankly.


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