Ponder The North v South Divide
In a country as small as Britain, this weird divide between North and South has always fascinated me. America’s nutty homophobic, black-hating Southerners (I’m being very stereotypical there, but I’m told that it is true, some of them are like that) versus the seemingly more laid-back Northern Americans doesn’t surprise me. Their country is HUGE! Anyway, my interest in this topic came about years ago when my Dad’s sister, from Dorset, married her Manchunian husband. This union happened long before I was born, however some of my first memories of meeting my Uncle was the ginormous, ugly, un-subtle chip upon his shoulder. The chip in question was there because I am a Southerner and he is a Northerner. Not something I even took into consideration, but he clearly had. I was consistently called “Soft Softener”, “Posh” and insults were made over anything that could somehow be related back to being from the South.
It gets tiring after a while – especially as a lot of the digs made towards me were based on preconceived ideas my Uncle thought I had about him. I don’t think he’s uneducated, lazy, common or rude. To me, a different accent means nothing. To him, it meant everything. The weirdest thing of all is that my Uncle married a Southerner. And now, oddly, I am seeing my Auntie and Uncle’s relationship repeated years later. My friend from Brighton has just started going out with a guy from Manchester and she is very happy. He is lovely, there is no denying that, but there lurking is the chip on his shoulder that reminds me of my Uncle. He made a remark about the fact that I hadn’t taken my shoes off in my friends home, when he had, and that therefore he had been brought up properly even though I probably wasn’t expecting that — in his opinion.
I don’t know what it is. I find it bizarre and I’ve never met someone from the South who feels such animosity towards the North. All over an accent? Madness.