MEET AMERICA CAMPAIGN: GEORGIA

I know it seems that I took a hiatus from my MEET AMERICA CAMPAIGN, but it wasn’t my fault!  My Georgia boy took forever to get his questions in, (I’m pointing fingers), but I assure you it was worth the wait!

Chris is from Mcdonough, GA, which is about 40 minutes south of Atlanta.  The reason he was worth the wait is because the man sings like an angel!!  Add on a beard, puppy dog eyes, and a southern drawl —  I’m swooning.  Let’s meet this Georgian musician!

CHRIS

A:  Chris, did you grow up in Georgia? If so, how was it different from other states?

C:  I was born and raised in Georgia.  Growing up here is really laid back.  It’s more centered around being outdoors and using the land; hunting, fishing, farming and cattle raising are all common things.

A:  If I were to visit, where are the places I MUST see?

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C:  If you were to visit you would have to see…ME, duh!! Haha, Georgia has wide variety of different entertainment.  Comedy clubs, historical places, good music scene and great food places, ‘cause, I mean, it’s the south.  No one cooks better than us.  The Walking Dead is filmed here, so  it’s easy to walk up and be an extra.  Georgia has a lot to offer.

A:  What is your favorite thing about Georgia?

C:  My favorite thing about Georgia…hmm, I never really thought of it.  I guess [the fact that] it’s diverse in landscape.  You’re a car ride away from the ocean, lakes, mountains, rivers, so there’s a lot of beautiful sights to behold.

A:  Tell me about your passion for music and singing. How’d it get started and where can we see it?

C:  Wow, singing and music.  I grew up in a musical family.  My parents sang in a touring

group around Georgia [and] I helped set up equipment and run the soundboard since I was little.  I was always drawn to instruments and singing. I’ve played in jazz bands, metal bands, rock bands, contemporary, Christian, worship punk, hardcore, you name it, I’ve probably played it.

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Click here to here Chris sing!

I just feel that music should be explored, not settled on just one genre.

My inspiration for singing is my mom.  She can sing so amazingly and I’m not saying that cause she’s my mom. She got soul, haha.

I currently am working on a solo acoustic album and also writing with another acoustic/folk band of mine called Two Beards and a Babe.

I have a youtube channel: HERE. I only uploaded one video so far, but I’ll have videos about the band [up] soon.

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A:  Your voice makes me feel like I’m in a Nicholas Sparks novel. [insert dreamy sigh]  So, Chris, I have to ask, what’s your favorite movie?

C:  Favorite movie: Star Wars saga and Pirates of the Caribbean.

Valid choices!  Love the Darth photo; I’m very glad he appreciates the American flag.  I want to thank Chris for participating in the Meet America Campaign.  I’d love to visit GA someday!

 You can find Chris on instagram at xsithbeardx

Next week the temperature rises for HAWAII!

Don’t forget to check out the previous states:

Yasmin: Alabama
Robert: Alaska
Reynell: Arizona
Stephanie: Arkansas
Christopher: California
Amanda: Colorado
Nyree: Connecticut
Michael: Delaware
Jennifer: Florida

MEET AMERICA: ALABAMA

I’m uber excited to finally launch my MEET AMERICA CAMPAIGN! So excited, in fact, that I used the word ‘uber’.

Quick catch up for the un-iformed: I made a plan to ‘meet’ one person from each state in the US and being the extreme OCD-list-making-freak that I am, I’m doing it alphabetically. SO! MEET:

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Yasmin is the most adorable and fun girl IN THE WORLD!!!! …too far?  I say this because Yasmin is one of a rare breed whose personality JUMPS out at you through typed words alone.  Not to mention she’s drop dead gorgeous– did you see that face!?  I’m already a ‘Bama fan.

Yasmin is from the west coast originally, but fate had her fall in love with a good ol’ country boy from Alabama four years ago.  She told me about her decision to move,

“I left everything I have ever known: family, friends, my whole life, to start over in Mobile, Alabama. I had no idea what to expect. I sometimes refer to my change in surroundings as coming from the oven to the steam pot.”  

“Steam pot” didn’t sound appealing to me, but I wanted to know everything Alabama, so I started asking the questions…

A: To a northerner, like me, I assume Alabama is HOT and sticky and my curly hair would multiply in size year round.  Is this true?

Y: As far as the weather you hit the nail on the head.  Summer time 95 degrees + 90% humidity = 115 degrees, scary right!? If you live near the beach it’s not that bad, but even then it’s almost unbearable!  You may as well not dry off after the shower.  I don’t even bother doing my hair in the summer.  I hardly wear make up as it melts off in a matter of seconds, and melted MAC is not cool with me.  The winters are freezing, literally, of course nothing like your winters [in New England] but to me they are misery! 

A: Describe a typical Alabama-ite. (Alabamian?) 

Y: The typical Alabamian is a southern Baptist, conservative.  Old southern hospitality is very common around here.  ‘Yes sir’, ‘no sir’ is the way of life, which is not common where I’m from, so I find that people think I’m rude — ha! Not even, I’m just a West Coast girl who likes to say ‘hey’, ‘yea’, ‘what’s up’ and ‘you guys’.   They say ‘y’all’, respond to a request with ‘ma’am’ or ‘sir’ and call shopping carts “buggies” lol… Being of Mexican and Cuban decent, I am quite the outcast here.  The majority of people are black or white and unfortunately racism is an all too common occurrence still.

“…unfortunately racism is an all too common occurrence still. I myself am married to a black man and some people do not find that too appealing…”

 I myself am married to a black man and some people do not find that too appealing… Overall the people in Alabama are good ol’ country folk who enjoy the slow life.  They are very nice and love to party.  Hunting, fishing, camping and FOOTBALL FOOTBALL FOOTBALL seems to the only way of life.  ROLL TIDE!

A: Is there anything you personally dislike about Alabama?

Y: Unfortunately there are quite a few things I dislike about Alabama.  First, it rains constantly for days on end, very depressing! …Tornadoes and hurricanes?  Yep, we have those too, yay us, NOT! The biggest of my dislikes would be the blatant discrimination. …I find that they are very reluctant when it comes to accepting others who are different.  I blame this on the past and the influence the older generations have on the newer.  These are things that may never change… they discriminate just as they did 50 years ago.  Before I moved to Alabama I was completely blind to the fact that “old school” racism still existed. …The only other thing I dislike is the Mexican food!  You can’t find a good taco anywhere!  Luckily I’m a Mexican, so I make them myself. 😉

A: Unfortunately racism is still in the US, but it’s couples like you and your hubby that’ll stamp it out!  You two are beautiful together!  Despite that and terrible tacos, what’s your favorite thing about Alabama?

Y: My favorite things about Alabama are the beaches and the trees, oh yes, and there is nothing like the Southern cooking.  Imagine being able to go to a gas station and get the most amazing fried chicken you’ve ever eaten– the fat girl in me… I love, love, love the seafood!  I also love that in a matter of a couple of hours you can be New Orleans, Atlanta, Florida, Biloxi Mississippi (casinos) and so many other fun places.

A: If I were to come to Alabama, where should I go for fun and food!?

Y: The best places to go for fun and food on the Gulf Coast of Alabama would definitely be Gulf Shores or Orange Beach. File created with CoreGraphicsYou get everything from Water Parks to shopping.  You can see a concert and have seafood on the beach.  You can spend the day at one of the many amusement parks or just hang out on the beach all day.  Night clubs line the beaches and there is never a lack of fun stuff to do…that’s when it’s summer.  During the winter I like to stay inside.  I have yet to get used to 19 degree weather due to the fact that, where I come from, flip-flops are the winter norm.

A: In New England we wear flip-flops while there’s snow on the ground. Ha!  So, tell us about your hobbies and your jewelry making on Etsy: Amor Bijoux!

Y:  A little about me, as if I haven’t told you my life story or anything 🙂 I recently found out I am pregnant!  Very excited.  I have a Yasmin's hubby and son!six-year-old son who is as fun [and] gorgeous as can be.  So those two are my most important hobbies.  I have always wanted to be a fashion designer or something along those lines.  

Amor Bijoux

My jewelry is my full-time passion. Technically I’m a dental assistant, I want everyone to have pretty teeth! …I would love to be a dentist someday, but at the moment moving or commuting to Birmingham (4 hours away) or New Orleans (2 hours) is not feasible.

A: Congratulations!  So I noticed you have a passion for fashion!  What was your most recent purchase?

Y: Shopping is in my top five most important things in life!  I go shopping daily and my husband probably hates me for it lol, he knew what he was getting into.  I recently bought some lace up gladiator heels, not a huge heel, 4″, but I’m in love with them.  I can walk all day in those puppies!

A: I’m from New England, as you know, what does Alabama first think of when hearing ‘New Englander’?

Y: Luckily I have been to your parts a time or two…I dated a professional baseball player for a few years, so I know what to expect of “y’all”, haha, as an Alabamian would say.  But they refer to New Englanders as “Yankees”.  Stuck in the past much?  I imagine you have an accent like a typical New Englander.  I have friends that live in Boston and I love to hear them speak.

A: Yasmin, I have a terribly wonderful Rhode Island/Boston accent, but luckily I can hide it pretty well!  It comes in handy when I go on auditions or do a show.  When checking out Alabama on Instagram, all I found was “ROLL TIDE” pride. What’s your favorite sports team?

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Y:  The University of Alabama Crimson Tide!  You can’t help but jump on the band wagon of a 15-time national championship winning team.  Not to mention my husband is a die-hard fan.  ROLL TIDE!

A:  Totally off topic, but because I’m comedy-crazy, what is your favorite funny movie?

Y: My favorite funny movie: Billy Madison! “Stop looking at me Swan!” Lol! I crack up every time. 

A: I LOVE anything Adam Sandler.  And you get bonus points for quoting the swan scene.

Y: Overall I wouldn’t change where I live for anything.  It’s a place that sucks you in… in the best ways possible :-). Alabama is known as “Alabama the Beautiful” and the name fits like a glove. Well, that’s me and my beautiful state!  Thanks for asking.

A: Thank you so much for sharing a little piece of your life with us, Yasmin!  I might just have to come visit; I’ve never had good southern cookin’.

 

Is she the amazing or what?  I’m so grateful I got the chance to learn the life of an Alabamian!  And I’m better for it!  I can’t wait to continue the MEET AMERICAN CAMPAIGN with y’all.  Hah, “y’all”, I’m local now.  Stay tuned next week for MEET AMERICA: ALASKA!  By the end of all 50 states I’ll be an American expert and so will you.

Make sure to check out Yasmin’s GORGEOUS jewelry at Amor Bijoux.  I already have a few pieces in my cart.

Until  next time, America,
(Ron Burgundy reference)

Alessandra