Wednesday, May 21, 2008

It's All In The South

The other day, I was bagging on the South. Specifically, Arkansas. And while I hold to my assessment of the South in general, I probably shouldn't have used Arkansas for the overall example to typify the general behavior of the southern denizens of this country. Because with the Arkansas situation, there was just the one situation. Granted, everything about it screamed, "It's in the SOUTH!" (It also screamed, "ALCOHOL may be involved!" but that's almost always the case when your 12-year old drinks your beer, steals your truck and crashes it at 2:30 in the morning. Almost always.) But I really like it when there's more than one example given to exemplify a point. So, welcome to Florida.

Now, you're getting quite the bonus here. I could, easily, stretch this out into at least five different posts. But they're all going to be crammed into this one post to really illustrate the Southern goodness of the US. These were the "Most Popular" stories in the Northwest Florida Daily News on Monday:
  • Couple steal beef jerky, threaten witnesses

  • Women yell profanities at Spring Fling

  • Man claims he was 'only talking' in park'

  • Woman robbed at her home

Now really, that seems like plenty. But I'm going to elaborate because, well, it's funny. First up, The Beef Jerky Duo. So, Leigh Stephen Cann Jr., age 22, stole three packages of beef jerky from a convenience store. His wife, Shannon Kelly, age 26, was with him at the time. After stealing the chewy, dried meat, he threatened the witnesses that were in the parking lot. They, naturally, fled. He, unnaturally, chased them down--all the way to the police station where this ingenious escapade was topped off when he punched through a car's window and was yelling at the occupant of the vehicle while his lovely, lovely wife began punching the witness. When confronted by a deputy, Cann Jr. proclaimed, "I tried to pay for the beef jerky, but the (insert expletive of your choice here) clerk wouldn't take my money." Well, OK then. Of course that really doesn't explain the chasing of non-clerks, nor does it explain any of the punching and yelling. (It certainly doesn't excuse it, for cryin' out loud.) Oh, and when his wife was being arrested, she hit the officer. Shocking, I know! Then she apologized. After that she begged to not be taken to jail. Welcome to Florida. Next!

In Fort Walton Beach, during the St. Mary's Spring Fling, two tables full of women were screaming obscenities at each other and the incident required police intervention. According to the police report, one woman was screaming obscenities at another woman on the phone with "Robert". Naturally, she refused to stop yelling even when asked to do so by the officers (because she simply must keep swearing!). That's when a different woman hurled herself at the phone woman. She was, surprise, screaming more obscenities during her hurl. Now, how this all came to be was that one of the women was dating "Robert" (presumably the woman on the phone with "Robert"). One of the other women was "Robert's" soon to be ex-wife. She and the gaggle of shrews had come to the Spring Fling because they knew that the woman dating "Robert" would be there and they wanted to confront her. Naturally, a Spring Fling in what sounds like it could be a church is a completely appropriate place to confront someone who is dating the person that you're divorcing. Sure it is. Welcome to Florida! Florida's in the South.

When an Okaloosa County Sheriff's deputy saw a truck at a park after the park was closed, he approached the truck and found a 19 year old male and his female companion. The guy told the cop that they were only talking. Then he lit a cigar. (Interesting behavior for a 19 year old. I wonder why he was smoking a cigar? Could it be so the truck would smell like cigar and not like something else? Let's find out!) They must have been "talking" in between all of the pot smoking, because the deputy saw a joint and some rolling papers just lying on the floor on the passenger's side in plain sight. Brilliant. Then the guy told the cop that he had marijuana in the back. Brilliant. He was then arrested for possession. They don't call it 'dope' for nothing. Welcome to Florida. It's really southern!

And finally, back in Fort Walton Beach, a bunch of guys who were wearing ski masks and who were also armed, kicked in the back door of a woman’s home around noon, stole her money and jewelry and then left in her car. According to the Sheriff's office, “She said there were several men, so we’re looking at probably at least three. One of them had a shotgun.” The vehicle, a 1994 Crown Victoria (you can't be surprised by the type of vehicle at this point, can you?) was recovered less than an hour later. Welcome to Florida. You just can't get any more South than this!

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