For a bit of fun I gave OtherWordlyOne a prompt (in bold), to see what she could come up with.
When Mr. Condescending and Mo invited me to accompany them to a trailer park party I was surprised, to say the least.
Why would Mo attend a trailer park party at all? He favors blending into the background of pubs rather than socializing with the unwashed masses. I suppose if you figure in his penchant for riding buses...but no, I don’t believe the English attach a certain social standing to public transport as Americans tend to do. Not only that, but buses found in trailer parks don’t move - as they’ve usually been renovated into guest rooms or dining areas. I doubt he’s used to eating atop rusted rims and cinder blocks.
Then there’s Mr. Condescending – does he really think he can blend in wearing a suit and tie? Knowing his habit of taking photos of oblivious trailer residents, I imagine his main motive for attending such a shindig would be the plethora of mullet sightings. I’m afraid the lighting will be a bit rudimentary – fires in barrels and glowing cigarettes mostly. But what the diminished light lacks in photo opportunities, it makes up for in romantic possibilities. Daddy always said that all cats look the same in the dark, and poor Mr. Condescending has been in desperate need of some pu...ahem...cat.
The only sensible conclusion is that they intend to use this party as a means of research. There are no hand written invitations to trailer park parties and I doubt they were specifically invited, so Mr. Condescending must have overheard the where and when in a recent diner encounter. Furthermore, I must assume that the only reason they are both so keen on my attendance is that they think bringing along a southern woman, familiar with the customs, will make them look less like crashers and more like locals.
I didn’t think it was a good idea, but they assured me that with my help they’d blend right in...And so I agreed to go. But being a forgetful sort, I decided to make a list of my considerable insider knowledge on trailer park parties and their participants. If I crammed everything in at the last minute there’s always the chance I could leave off something and then someone could end up making a terrible faux pas, ending up in the hospital, or worse, married.
Decoding Trailer Park Party Etiquette: An Insider’s View
Clothing – I you aren’t comfortable in cut off blue jean shorts that cause a moose knuckle, stick with baggy camouflage pants. T-shirts with the sleeves ripped off depicting famous wrestlers are always a good bet. Work boots, flip flops, or bedroom shoes and a ball cap should complete your ensemble.
Introductions – The most important things to remember when introducing yourself to the men are to look them in the eye, think manly thoughts, project heterosexualness, and don’t smile. If they shake your hand, squeeze as hard as you can, but try not to your palm slide against his upon release... Immediately gesturing broadly and commenting on the large size of the roasting pig would help with that.
Introducing yourself to the women depends upon age: tip your hat to the young and old, wink at the legal, and pinch the middle aged on the ass. Unless they’re married. You don’t want to touch a married woman’s ass unless the husband tells you to, which happens more than you think.
Communication – Do not, under any circumstances, say the following:
- Is that a man or a woman?
- I’m a vegetarian.
- Your mama...
- Do you have light (or imported) beer?
- Isn’t moonshine illegal?
- I do.
If you hear any of the following you should always reply in the affirmative using either “a’yep”, “yessiree”, or “hell yeah”:
- Dukes of Hazard is the best damn TV show ever made.
- Betty Crocker ain’t got shit on my mama.
- If ya go away clean, ya ain’t eatin’ it right.
When you can’t understand what they said and you aren’t sure how you should reply, never ask them to repeat the question. Fake a coughing fit and excuse yourself.
Food – Eat whatever they give you to avoid being offensive. Vomit later. And don’t ask what it is or who made it. You likely wouldn’t want to know anyway. Desert is usually pretty safe.
Times of Distress – If you find yourself in a difficult situation, the best thing to do is leave. However, at a trailer park party, you might not be immediately aware of the danger. Here are a few signs that it’s time for you to haul ass:
- You’ve just been introduced to someone’s daughter who happens to be wearing a window screen over her face that looks suspiciously like a makeshift veil...and her Uncle Gil, who just happens to be a justice of the peace.
- You hear rifles cocking in more than one place or police sirens.
- A couple of the boys ask you to take a little moonlight stroll to check out the fishin’ hole.
After going over the list with Mo and Mr. C, they seemed relatively confident that they could pull it off. I wasn’t so sure, but I kept it to myself. Daddy always said that you can lead a woman to the kitchen and give her all the ingredients she needs, but you can’t keep the bitch from burnin’ your biscuits.
And before the boys and I walk into that trailer park, just in case, I’ll give them one last piece of advice that daddy said you could take to the bank:
Don’t let your mouth write checks that your ass can’t cash.