I lived half my childhood in the south (the first half). Even though I grew up in the south my parents were obvious Yankees and that influence was made even more clear to other people by some pretty obvious tells.
First I don’t like sweet tea. In fact, I hate any sugar in my tea. In my opinion tea is best served black (no sugar, no milk, and no cream) whether it is iced or hot. This is extremely frustrating when every two seconds you have someone shoving a pitcher in your mouth and asking in a sing song twang, "Y'all want some sweet tea?"
Another sign that I wasn’t fully southern was I never ate grits, or chitlins, or collard greens at home. The typical southern comfort food was never prepared in our household. Going to friends homes would be interesting and I would sometimes wonder aloud what something was because I didn’t recognize it. The puzzled faces would tell me that this was another yank fail.
The biggest southerner offense of them all was that I just don’t like football (the American style of football, for you international readers). That is just unheard of! The whole town goes to the high school football games. The Superbowl isn’t just a sporting event, it is a solemn holiday more celebrated than Christmas. I just don’t like it. There’s a bunch of pausing and clock resetting and huddles. Five minutes in football doesn’t really mean five minutes, it means thirty minutes. The referees are always talking to the crowd explaining things (If you’re a fan shouldn’t you just know why they got a penalty?). Actual plays might last for a couple minutes if you’re lucky (this is more reminiscent of rush hour traffic not a sport). I just never thought it was that interesting… why couldn’t it be more like soccer or hockey or basketball; few interruptions, lots of action that lasts for long periods of time, and minimal referee talking.
Not quite fitting in as a southern belle isn’t such a bad thing. In fact, not quite being just like everyone else made me cool and interesting (if only in my head).