America, we had a pretty bad flood happen here in Nashville. We noticed that you didn’t notice. That’s OK, there was a bomb that didn’t explode in Times Square and and oil spill in the Gulf. It took up all the news space. Seriously, it’s OK.
Here’s the deal with our town. We have one particular industry here, the music industry, which isn’t really that big in the grand scheme of things, that has made a lot of money putting out an image that we’re a bunch of inbred hillbilly yokels who sing about sexy tractors and watermelon crawls. We know that’s what you think, and that’s OK. Meanwhile we are walking around in our regular clothes, not in cowboy hats and boots, going to our jobs in healthcare and publishing and tourism and tech, just living our lives in peace.
Now, it’s true that we aren’t entirely like some of you. We hold the door open for old ladies and say thank you to the cashier and get called “hon” by the waitress at the Waffle House. We say “y’all” and “all y’all” and we eat grits and biscuits. And here’s another thing, we’re quick to help people, but we’re also quick to mind our own business. There are a lot of famous people in this town. We leave them alone. I saw Jack White at my favorite watering hole recently. Everybody left him alone. I saw Michael McDonald at an Indian buffet recently. There were 100 people in that restaurant, everyone left him alone. We all know where Nicole Kidman buys her groceries and where Vince Gill eats breakfast on the weekends, yet you never see paparazzi hanging out in those places. This isn’t New York and it isn’t L.A. That’s how we like it.
So, now that something happens that deserves national attention, you’re leaving us alone. We’re OK with that. Because we’re helping ourselves. That’s how we roll here. The volunteer effort here has been amazing. There aren’t people clamoring for a government bail out. Nobody is bitching at FEMA. Nobody is looting. Nobody is getting raped at a shelter. We’re helping each other. We’re cleaning up and we will move on.
This is a big deal, America. I know several people who have lost everything. I’m helping clean up, and offering clothes and a place to stay. There are thousands of similar stories like that in Nashville. We help each other out. We do what we can.
So y’all go on about what you’re doing and we’ll go on about what we are doing. But I just want to let you know, right now this is the strongest city in America. Right now this is the proudest city in America. So, after we clean up, come see us sometime. Y’all are always welcome.