Southern Women are like Teacakes
So…my particular academic context is smack dab in the middle of the South, and if you even think about going out of town on anything but an interstate (which most people don’t), you’ll quickly see you’re in the real South, with cotton still being grown, and tobacco, and all.
But within the ivied walls and the surrounding neighborhoods, professor population is heavily weighted toward transplants from elsewhere. They think they’re in the South because it’s humid, but they don’t realize they’ve met almost no Southerners in the 20 years since they’ve had tenure here.
And in this context, at lunch at a conference the other day, one of the women at the table told us: “Southern women are like teacakes.”
I have not yet decided what this means. My first instinct was a culinary curiosity about her origins, because, really, not many people have ever tried a teacake where I come from. But it could be her familiarity with teacakes was second-hand–most of us who read have heard of teacakes, just like we’ve hard of porridge and hardtack, and we’ve heard of them enough to have vivid mental images of what they must be like.
Kind of like Southern women, in fact.
I have not yet decided if someone who doesn’t recognize a Southern woman (hello y’all!) when she’s talking to her should make these kind of pronouncements. But, of course, someones often do, so…what do YOU think it means?
Also, what kind of dessert would you like to be?
I think instead of teacake, I would like to be something that is dark chocolate, rich and smooth, with just a hint of travels in it–some unexpected spice, not too common–and, of course, an overdeveloped sense of risibility, maybe a pink Peeps bunny sitting upright in the middle of its elegance. Something like that.
Please feel free to invent this dessert for me and mail it RIGHT to my door. That would be so cool to have a dessert invented in my honor. In fact, the other day, we spotted some 24 Hours as a Millionaire/personal concierge/travel channel fantasy thing on Hawaii on T.V., and I said: “You know, what they should do, is do this in Paris. And what I would ask my personal concierge is to take me to Christian Constant and have him invent a special chocolate just for me AND WITH MY NAME ON IT SOLD IN HIS STORE.”
And Sébastien said, kind of like Christopher Robin, only with that one eyebrow he can raise: “???”
Which makes me suspect that if we ever catch a white fish and get three wishes to share, we will end up with a sausage stuck to our noses.
What about you? No, not the millionaire thing or the sausage/fish thing. What dessert would you be? Or are you good with teacake? Or whatever women in your region are like.