BOGs and GOBs

I was reminded this morning that the old Confederacy is, in many ways, different from the rest of the Yankee republic. This despite 1.5 century since the rebellion and the apparent elimination of slavery.

When I arrived at gym this morning there were three vehicles worth of maintenance people who had been doing something overnight. I was grateful that they did their work while the gym was closed. Usually such things are done instead of what the organization is intended for. Up Nawth they do street repairs at night; in Alibam they do them during rush hours.

I should mention that I only saw a few of the crew but every one was obese and short. The latter is common in Southron hill country where inbreeding is anecdotally common. The former is common in Alibam (and much of the old Confederacy,) but not obvious, especially in Nawth Alibam.

Also, the gym was highly strewn about. Evidently maintenance people do not have to restore things to their original locations and state, or, more likely, lack the cognitive capacity to do so. The combination of these two brings us to some comments on Southron bogs.

A subset of Southron bog is the ‘Good Ole Boy’. Ole is pronounced with an almost silent ‘e’. Definitely not an Hispanic ‘ole’ For convenience, the acronym of Good Ole Boy is GOB which is helpful. GOBs are not quite illiterate but they do take not reading or being intellectual as a point of pride and macho. The latter insures their high level of animosity to Hispanics, also competition for jobs. The term ‘blue collar’ seems almost invented for GOBs except that they almost never wear shirts with collars. Their vehicle of choice is an antediluvian pickup truck. It is a matter of pride that they violate the law by having no insurance on their vehicles, knowing their poverty will assure they are never litigated for the damage they do.

Poverty is also a matter of pride. GOBs are highly independent in some matters and almost communal in others. They have no objection to either money or labor except when the two are combined. The work they want to do is supremely important; that someone would pay them for supremely irrelevant and fatuous. Hence they build wonderfully for themselves but abysmally for pay. They are, in a sense, the last vestiges of the Jeffersonian independent farmer, but sadly almost always lacking the dignity.

They detest any authority other than their own. But they will be swayed to any political position by politicians with flattery and ethanol. They are opposed to any form of change, even that which they think of themselves on the rare occasions when they think. Most of their activities are geared to an avoidance of cognition. They are horribly naive about any greater reality than their own familial/social community. And are perfectly happy to kill anyone who tries to intrude on their reality.

The extreme individuals of this genre are sometimes referred to as GOB Schmucks by non-GOBs who know what a schmuck is. This situation is definitive.