If Contractions Come Before Birth… !
Then you’re a reborn baby boy.
Tonight you said—and you said it sincerely; you felt it. You meant it—you said “y’all”
Until tonight, you retained no experience of ever having said “y’all” without audible quotations around it, without heavy irony.
Your previous experiences involving “y’all” were of one mind: undivided against its usage. It stood for everything you spat at about the South in your early youth: your father’s family and friends, your home region, a philistine carelessness toward correct, educated English.
But now, you just might be a member of the South after all….
You even placed it within a very Southern sentence:
“God bless y’all for working so late!”
You said that to the cashier at McDonald’s.
There seems to be a trend going with you such that when you get early-morning fast-food from your nearby, all-night drive-through, you experience something highly existential at the cashier window.
You feel very awkward about every bit of this, and you slightly disapprove of yourself. But in the same stride, you feel … a little … excited by it, even happy about it.
You’re definitely a different guy these days than the young man you were in younger years. And that’s … uh … something, isn’t it? Haha!