A not-even-vaguely-related-to-Korea post -- Southern Women: Part I

Oh lord, just prepare yourselves now. Not a whole lot going on in the life o' Liz at the moment (thank god for that) and I have tendency to go into hibernation mode once it gets seriously cold out. As Willie put it this weekend, why would I go into Seoul when I can stay in my apartment and watch movies?

Well all of this is basically leading up to me trying to excuse the fact that I'm about to blog about a television show. And not even like an artistic, documentary based one -- I'm talking Real Housewives of Atlanta here, okay?

Now give me a minute. I'll get around to a bigger point eventually. But we'll start here.

I have no interest in that California show. I've got a lot beef with California, and the west coast in general -- I have a theory that all people can be categorically defined as either "west coast" or "east coast", no matter where they're from or what their background is. It's a personality thing. And, well I lived in New York for nearly six years -- you figure it out. That's nothing against the west coast people -- you gotta have them around -- they're delightful, with their slow talking and generally easy going personalities -- I'm just not one of them. Now. As an adopted New Yorker for some time, however, I do have a general morbid, arrogant fascination with New Jersey, however. And when I heard there was a show about New Jersey housewives, you better believe I jumped on that. That's where it began.

When I went home in October to visit my family at the one year mark, as I sat around gorging on homemade everything and not showering on a daily basis, I noticed that there was a new version -- The Real Housewives of Atlanta. Now we're talking.

Nobody but nobody does drama like a southern woman. I know because I am one. We've got opinions about everything, and we'll take full advantage of half an opportunity to express them. We run our mouths about everything under the sun and rarely show an ounce of regret. The difference in the southern brand of drama is that, if it comes down to it, we can admit we were wrong -- we'll just blame it on being caught up in the moment. And the most appealing aspect of southern drama, as I see it, is the ability to set the bullshit aside when the situation calls for it. Don't believe me? Watch the reunion show for the other housewives series, and then watch the Atlanta reunion show. Those ladies behaved like ladies. They settled their drama before they stepped foot on stage and, whatever may have still been going on at the time, they banded together and refused to let the host burrow in underneath and between them. They realized that, although they could use the chance to bring each other down, they may also be brought down in the process, and the smart thing to do was to pack it in tight and not go down that road.


Time and time again throughout the series, you see the girls get into the same bitchy little ego centered fights that all the other women have in the past. The difference is that, following whatever ridiculous rift occurred in any given episode, by the next episode they were sitting down and talking it out. And when it couldn't be talked out, even when there was tension, they would agree to disagree and do their dead level to be cordial to each other. They supported each other when they needed to and put aside their differences to come together for mutual friends in need. That was the defining element I was so proud to relate to.

Which brings me around to my real point, which is that I hate Christmas. Or that it is soon to be Christmas, and although I hate Christmas, Christmas is the time I knew I could rely on every year while I was living in New York for a chance to get home and see my family. I could also rely on boatloads of drama, given that my family is both female and Southern based.

Now you want to talk about a group of women who have been through some bullshit, both in general, and specifically at the hands of men. I don't discuss my past or my family too often here -- it's not really something I focus on in my daily life, outside of my own personal interactions with my family itself and a handful of very dear friends who know a hell of a lot more than most people I meet in life from this point forward ever will. I will outline the situation briefly and then later, because vagueness is boring, get into some more details.

My family, as I consider it, is my mom, my little brother, my aunt, my mom's parents and my little (male) cousin. Since I've been away, my brother has made his own additions to our family in the form of a wife and a baby. Unfortunately, I've had about two weeks total to be around that situation, and haven't quite adjusted to it yet, although I love them both and welcome them into the family with open arms. The three main women in my life are my mom, my aunt and my grandmother. I want to talk about them here for the first time. Christmas is three days away, and I miss these three women more than words can begin to convey. Even thinking about the nonsense and fighting that goes on every single damn holiday we all have crammed up in that little house, where we women-folk always manage to get uppity about something, while the men-folk hide out in another room trying not to make any sudden moves... well.

This Christmas is going to be different. I'm stuck in Korea. My brother's stuck out in California. My grandparents are out in Alabama settling the situation left behind from my great aunt's recent death. Our family is more (physically) divided now than it ever has been. We've been through some serious shit on a lot of different levels over the years, but we've never been separated before -- not like this. So I'll take this downtime from any Korea related news or nonsense to honor these three women and what they've meant to me. It's about to get real personal up in here, kiddos. Bear with the Liz -- she's not used to operating on this level. That having been said, it's going to be long. So we'll divide it into parts.

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