"What makes a Bubba?" a Northern friend once asked. I was stumped, realizing the usual response, "a heavyset good ol' boy," wasn't going to suffice.
"A Bubba is someone who enjoys the finer points of outdoor culture, like frog gigging," I responded. If you ever want to confuse a Yankee, mention frog gigging. It'll be as alien to him as grits.
In the pond, my gigging partner, Matt, was sinking in the shallow muck. In the beam of his light was an old croaker. He motioned for me to poke it before he adjusted his footing. The bullfrog was none the wiser.
Matt pulled his leg out of the dark mud and we trudged on, deciphering noises from the symphony reverberating through the woods. We were listening for the rumbling bass signature of a bullfrog.
By midnight we left the pond with sore legs, carrying a bag of good-sized frogs ready for the skillet. I thought about the earlier question: What makes a Bubba? Well, not only does he have to appreciate a gigging trip, but he must be proficient in another Southern art: frying. There are few bonnes bouches tastier than a mess of frog legs.