Many years ago, my family joined a church right down the street from us. It was a large Methodist (You know… Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors) congregation. It was what going home should feel like. We were instantly accepted by young and old alike. We were in our early thirties with young children. There were many other families just like ours. There were lots of older loving couples full of hugs just like grandparents. We just loved Sunday worship and all of the other weekly activities and events held there.
Now, you have to take in mind that while I am a compassionate person, I am also fun- loving. A sarcastic little twit if you must say it! One day I got a phone call. I did not have caller ID back then. On the other end of the line was an extremely drawn out Southern accent like a sweet little old man. Naturally, I thought it was my friend’s husband who was never beyond playing a prank on me. Being me, I turned on the Southern charm and sarcasm. Remember, I am from a small town in Virginia so I already have somewhat of an accent as it is. I continued this conversation with the most drawn out fake Southern accent you’ve ever heard in your life. It was so bad, I couldn’t even tell you what accent I was copying. Actually, I was imitating him! Now, I’ve never claimed to be a quick study! After about TWO minutes into the conversation, I realized this was not my friend. This REALLY was a sweet little old man with a Southern accent, and he was calling from my church! Instant panic…was I to continue the conversation with my fake accent or was I to fess up? NO, I didn’t fess up. I kept right up with my lovely slow charming Southern manner of speaking.
After, I hung up I realized that this might present a problem at church. So, what did I do? I did what any other self respecting charming Southern girl would’ve done. I poured on my lovely Southern charm and accent (hugs included!) every single time I spoke with this gentleman and his wife. After about a month, I relaxed the accent a little until I finally came back to my normal voice. Did he notice? Probably, but he much too much of a Southern gentleman to call me out on it.
So, now I have confessed, but please don’t make me go tell him. He would probably get quite a kick out of it. You know we Southerners have a great sense of humor to go along with our accents, don’t you?!