Mayhap I've mentioned that one of mah favorite writers is Flannery O'Connor.
She wrote the dern'dest short stories ya ever will read. You'll laugh out loud, an' you'll be shocked. Some called her the master of the grotesque. She wrote up some amazin' characters--mostly drawn from the South.
One funny but serious story is called Good Country People. The story revolves around a lonely young woman who sneers at her country mama and mama's friends. He mama named her Joy, but after gettin' a Ph.D in nihilistic philosophy she renamed herself "Hulga" --about as ugly and hopeless a name as I'se ever heered. Hulga has a wooden leg that she sees as her most precious part.
Along comes the travelin' bible salesman, a Mr. Manly Pointer (Tole ya the stories is hilarious) who is goin' to , ah, point a few thangs out to this smug woman who puts on airs about her atheistic erudition. She ain't what she claims, and neither is he....but I won't spoil the story fer ya'....jes' a warm up to make a point on manners.
Flannry O'Connor wrote during the 1960s (early death from Lupus) when the Civil Rights thang was gatherin' steam. She noted that the relations a'tween Black and Whites would be okay as long as we all kept our good manners--an' mostly she were right: More riots and trouble in the North than the South over integration.
Flannery thought the formality of manners acted as a mediator--a buffer if ya will, for those times when tempers is high.
Well, tempers is about to fly, ain't it? I mean, here we go into the election season, campaign season, political season.
I reckon ever'body goin' to have strong opinions--I will. (Obama is a Marxist, pure and simple.)
All I'se suggestin' is that we remember to be polite about itl-ya know? The person who thinks different from you is still a person that ya might like on other matters.
Mostly the Front Porch ain't fer sluggin' thangs out--thas round on the BACK Porch. But it ain't never amiss to remind meself that I can say strong thangs about the situation wif'out forgettin' to be mannerly.