Our hosts at the beach this past weekend got a real kick out of the fact that I grew up in Pensacola, Florida. They kept referring to the fact that I am from the “Redneck Rivera.” This is true. Anyone who has any doubts about the Northwest Florida Gulf Coast being referred to as the Redneck Rivera for any other reason than the truth need only watch this short documentary about an annual event hosted by the Flora-Bama Bar (straddling the Florida/Alabama border). Yes, tossing fish is a tremendous event along the Gulf Coast. Furthermore, anyone who doubts the redneck nature of said event need only look at the participants. Any event where former Major League Baseball pitcher John Rocker, features as the local celebrity is clearly redneck in nature. Also, there is a direct relationship between how redneck an event is and how many people are on record at said event uttering the nonsensical phrase “Roll Tide.”
Although I grew up in Northwest Florida, I never would condescend to attend an event like the Florabama Mullet Toss. Sure, those people are hilarious to watch from afar, but up close, it’s as frightening as a Tea Party convention. Pretty much, you could also do a Venn Diagram with mullet tossers and Tea Party members and you would probably find the following relationship: All Tea Partiers are not mullet tossers (because some live too far away and haven’t been to the Gulf Coast) but all mullet tossers are Tea Partiers. I am betting that the relationship would look like that, although actual research would be needed to confirm that hypothesis.
I love the Southern Foodways Alliance and their willingness to document these bizarre events (documentary filmmaker crush on Joe York).