I live in an area of the country that is nationally notorious for being rather "backwoods." After living here for a little over a year, I can see where that stereotype may originate. However, I have also noticed a strange kinship with my redneck bretheren. Here, the rednecks are loud and proud. They drive trucks with "Cowboy Up" emblazoned on the rear window. They watch Nascar, football, and carry guns. They decorate to the hilt for every holiday. They dress up for every football game and every holiday. They are fiercely pro-America, pro-armed forces, and country music fans. You see, I have a little theory. I believe that humans have inherent, default redneck tendencies, and we must sometimes stifle these tendencies to move to cultural "next level." We are all a little bit redneck.
My husband's redneck trait? His penchant for hunting and killing poor defenseless animals. My redneck trait? I'm a packrat, and I like to drink just a wee bit more than your average citizen. My mother's redneck legacy? She is a Christmas freak. She has every sort of Christmas decoration known to man, and keeps buying more every year. My friend, ChurchMom, loves shopping at Nordstrom. Her whole house is decorated in Pottery Barn, and she is a bit of a label junkie. Her favorite pastimes? Watching Nascar, baseball, and drinking beer. I can think of a redneck trait in every single one of my (usually refined, and quite well-educated) friends. We all buy more than we need at Wal Mart. We secretly enjoy Jerry Springer, even if we would never admit it to our seemingly "classy" friends. Maybe this is bourgeoise rhetoric. Perhaps the truly aristocratic of our society wouldn't dream of collecting snow globes or decorating the front lawn with huge, blow-up characters; nor would they be caught dead at a Nascar rally. Perhaps you can breed the redneck traits right out of your lineage, but I like to think otherwise.
I have patients that could write the book on being a redneck; yet they are the most genuine, passionate, and generous people that I have ever had the good fortune to know. Being a redneck, in many ways, can be a positive personality trait. It all hinges on your perception. How do you embrace your inner redneck?