The Official Guide to Christmas in the South: Or, If You Can't Fry It, Spraypaint It Gold

Overview

No place celebrates Christmas like Dixie, and with this charming, humorous guide, anyone can learn how to deck the halls, Southern style

It's the one time of the year when both the divine and debutantes take center stage in a perfect storm of hot glue and cheese grits: Christmas. But successfully navigating through the holiday season can be more complex than Santa's midnight journey. There are pitfalls hotter than any chimney ? and social situations more slippery than any roof! ...

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The Official Guide to Christmas in the South: Or, If You Can't Fry It, Spraypaint It Gold

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Overview

No place celebrates Christmas like Dixie, and with this charming, humorous guide, anyone can learn how to deck the halls, Southern style

It's the one time of the year when both the divine and debutantes take center stage in a perfect storm of hot glue and cheese grits: Christmas. But successfully navigating through the holiday season can be more complex than Santa's midnight journey. There are pitfalls hotter than any chimney — and social situations more slippery than any roof! But now The Official Guide to Christmas in the South has arrived to reveal the finer and sometimes unspoken details of Dixie etiquette.

Perfect for a true Southerner's coffee table or an imposter's survival guide, The Official Guide to Christmas in the South is the gift that will keep on regifting season after season.

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Editorial Reviews

Creative Loafing
“If you’re not stopping traffic, you’re not decorating hard enough. These…secrets of Southern yuletide will get you through the season.”
Southern Living
“Tongue-in-cheek…well written and funny, the quirky descriptions of Christmas events are sure to bring you holiday cheer.”
Miami Herald
“If you were born south of the Mason-Dixon…Read it before you rewrap that fruitcake.”
Mobile Register
“A laugh-out-loud look at how people living south of the Mason-Dixon celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.”
News-Star (Monroe)
"A hoot…a great way to get in the mood for the approaching holidays with a laugh."
News-Star (Monroe))
"A hoot…a great way to get in the mood for the approaching holidays with a laugh."
News-Star (Monroe
“A hoot…a great way to get in the mood for the approaching holidays with a laugh.”
Mobile Register
"A laugh-out-loud look at how people living south of the Mason-Dixon celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ."
Southern Living
"Tongue-in-cheek...well written and funny, the quirky descriptions of Christmas events are sure to bring you holiday cheer."
News-Star
"A hoot...a great way to get in the mood for the approaching holidays with a laugh."
Miami Herald
"If you were born south of the Mason-Dixon...Read it before you rewrap that fruitcake."
Creative Loafing
"If you’re not stopping traffic, you’re not decorating hard enough. These...secrets of Southern yuletide will get you through the season."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060850531
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/31/2006
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 866,576
  • Product dimensions: 5.12 (w) x 7.58 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Meet the Author

David C. Barnette celebrates Christmas in coastal Alabama with his wife, Ashley, and daughters Cailey and Sibley. He received his MFA in writing from Vermont College.

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Read an Excerpt

The Official Guide to Christmas in the South

Or, If You Can't Fry It, Spraypaint It Gold
By David Barnette

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2005 David Barnette
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0060850531

Chapter One

Once-a-Year Opportunity

The national media portrays the South, impossibly, as the Mecca of both religion and a good party. For once, the national media is right. But there's more to it than what we see on TV: the Bush twins stumbling out of Austin bars, the Ten Commandments hauled into a state capitol on a front-end loader. What the media should focus on more is that one special time of year when the divine and debutantes all take center stage in a perfect storm of hot glue and cheese grits: Christmas.

There are certain social needs that can only be met a this special time . . .

Advertising the family name. This is the only time of year when five bucks and a poinsettia can get the family name in the church bulletin. Atlanta ad agencies have rarely landed such a captive audience.

Promoting the family image. From January to Thanksgiving, only real estate agents, attorneys, and hookers can freely distribute photos of themselves. Christmas, however, is open season for the mass mailing of family photos.

Showing off the house. One of the more bizarre things about life in the South is how a dinner inevitably leads to a tour of the house. This is equally true of antebellum and double-wide homes, each of which have notable features to be highlighted. This is the time of year to show it all off, whether of the garden-district or garden-tub variety.

Exercising the silver. While Northerners sing about silver bells, Southerners are rigging their kitchen sinks with baking soda and aluminum foil in experimental attempts to clean the sheer volume of silver necessities. The resulting acrid smell has been compared to that of a home perm, and is often masked with the use of potpourri Crockpots. The fact that all of this happens only once a year is why a little advance planning takes place. Fortunes of cotton and tobacco weren't built overnight, and a noteworthy Christmas isn't planned over Thanksgiving turkey.

Continues...


Excerpted from The Official Guide to Christmas in the South by David Barnette Copyright © 2005 by David Barnette. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

1 Once-a-year opportunity 1
2 Christmas china and therapy 11
3 Decorating tips from car dealers 23
4 A casserole catechism 37
5 The divinity code 49
6 The gilt complex 59
7 Inside Christmas 69
8 Gifts that keep regiving 81
9 Party like it's $19.99 93
10 'Twas the night 107
Epilogue : there's got to be a morning after 121
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First Chapter

The Official Guide to Christmas in the South
Or, If You Can't Fry It, Spraypaint It Gold

Chapter One

Once-a-Year Opportunity

The national media portrays the South, impossibly, as the Mecca of both religion and a good party. For once, the national media is right. But there's more to it than what we see on TV: the Bush twins stumbling out of Austin bars, the Ten Commandments hauled into a state capitol on a front-end loader. What the media should focus on more is that one special time of year when the divine and debutantes all take center stage in a perfect storm of hot glue and cheese grits: Christmas.

There are certain social needs that can only be met a this special time . . .

Advertising the family name. This is the only time of year when five bucks and a poinsettia can get the family name in the church bulletin. Atlanta ad agencies have rarely landed such a captive audience.

Promoting the family image. From January to Thanksgiving, only real estate agents, attorneys, and hookers can freely distribute photos of themselves. Christmas, however, is open season for the mass mailing of family photos.

Showing off the house. One of the more bizarre things about life in the South is how a dinner inevitably leads to a tour of the house. This is equally true of antebellum and double-wide homes, each of which have notable features to be highlighted. This is the time of year to show it all off, whether of the garden-district or garden-tub variety.

Exercising the silver. While Northerners sing about silver bells, Southerners are rigging their kitchen sinks with baking soda and aluminumfoil in experimental attempts to clean the sheer volume of silver necessities. The resulting acrid smell has been compared to that of a home perm, and is often masked with the use of potpourri Crockpots. The fact that all of this happens only once a year is why a little advance planning takes place. Fortunes of cotton and tobacco weren't built overnight, and a noteworthy Christmas isn't planned over Thanksgiving turkey.

The Official Guide to Christmas in the South
Or, If You Can't Fry It, Spraypaint It Gold
. Copyright © by David Barnette. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 5, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Snooze Fest.

    This book is an extremely quick read. I'm from Texas and grew up in Oklahoma, so I consider myself fairly Southern.

    I have to say I didn't laugh once. Not even a smile. I was expecting something similar to Gayden Metcalfe's books on the South, but this was no where near that sort of funny.

    The way the author presents this humor, it makes you raise an eyebrow and wonder why everybody seems so vapid and shallow - it wasn't presented in a funny way at all. The flow isn't cohesive and I just felt that this wasn't my cup of tea.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2011

    could have used a bit more ... Gold Spraypaint

    I enjoyed the book but it wasn't quite as funny as I'd hoped it would be. I've enjoyed other Southern authors and was looking forward to some ridculousness but found only a few smiles.
    Barnette mentions some homemade candies in the book and I would love to find those recipes!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 30, 2011

    Don't bother

    Should be in the $.99 category. Not worth that even.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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