Confessions of a Failed Southern Lady by Florence King

By Florence King

Confessions of a Failed Southern woman is Florence King's vintage memoir of her upbringing in an eccentric Southern kinfolk, informed with all of the uproarious wit and gusto that has made her the most in demand writers within the state. Florence can have been a sadness to her Granny, whose dream of rearing an ideal Southern girl may by no means be fairly fulfilled. yet finally, as Florence reminds us, "no topic which intercourse I went to mattress with, I by no means smoked at the street."

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My friends and I also played war. This might come as a shock to those who know me in more recent decades. But we grew up during and after the Second World War and, to us, that conflict was very much a morality play, with the virtuous Americans and British fighting the wicked Germans (usually referred to simply as “the Nazis”). So, as part of our own war games, we ran about in schoolyards, backyards, and basements, “shooting” at one another with sticks and crying out as we keeled over in combat.

After a day’s work, I frequently came back to my bed at night to find the sheets or other vital items missing. My protests to the camp director were unavailing. One night, when I walked into the bunk I found an enormous, dirt-covered boulder lying in the middle of my bed, with my tormenters lined up laughing hysterically. I must have been enraged, for I somehow picked up the boulder and hurled it into one of their beds. This ended my problems with them, for—having barely managed to lift the boulder with all three of them on the job— they were suddenly enormously impressed with me.

It was an unpleasant turnabout, and a local policeman actually did grill us about what had happened. Ultimately, our fathers saved the situation, and I never did any time for golf ball theft. S. 217. This turned out to be a rather insensitive group of boys who, under the direction of an adult scoutmaster, would march about in military-style flag drills (which I disliked), take rope-tying, fire-building, and other tests to advance their rank (which was okay), and go on overnight hikes (which I more or less enjoyed).

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