My grandmother is exceedingly fond of yard sales and other purveyors of secondhand goods, and she is always buying strange things and offloading them on her hapless relatives (see “Be Thinking of Nice Things to Say”). Every now and then, though, she will stumble upon something so bizarre that it is truly a treasure, although maybe not for the reasons she judges it to be so. Such treasures include a T-shirt of unknown origins that she gave to my sister, and these John Deere plates she got for me when I moved into my first apartment (even though she knew perfectly well that I already had a full set of dishes):
I am now the proud owner of 20 or so plates that remind me with every meal that “nothing runs like a Deere,” and I must say they’ve grown on me.
But on to the shirt. Here’s a picture of my sister modelling it:
It’s not the best quality picture, so allow me to walk you through it. Underneath the promise of Fine Southern Hospitality is the slogan “Peaches, Peanuts, and Sweet Tea,” along with pictures of these delicacies for the benefit of the illiterate. A pecan tree spreads its branches in the background. And at the bottom, strategically positioned to be roughly aligned with the wearer’s crotch, are the words “Welcome to Georgia.”
I love this shirt; it has such an abundance of delightfully ambiguous double entendres. Are the peaches a Southern staple or a fertility symbol? Is ‘Georgia’ a poetic euphemism? What kind of hospitality are we talking, here?
I’m not sure if Nanna picked up on the fact that she was gifting her granddaughter a shirt that could easily be an advertisement for a Bible-belt brothel. You never quite know, with Nanna. My sister took the shirt with her when she went to college in the Northeast, just to screw with the Yankees’ perceptions of Southerners.
(Update: since posting this, I have been reminded by my sister that the shirt was size XL and still bore a price tag indicating that it cost $1.49 at Wal-Mart. These are typical hallmarks of my grandmother’s gifts.)