Advice For Southern Millennial Men and Boys

Advice for Southern Millennials

Yesterday I published an article giving advice to young Millennials for things that they should DO. Today, I want to talk about two topics: What every Southern man should HAVE; and what Southern men are expected to know HOW to do. Parents, drag your little precious snowflakes to the computer and make them read this post, even your daughters; after all, the ladies should know what to expect from the men in their lives, right?

The title of the post is not misleading. I can’t really give advice to Yankees on what to carry on your person or what tasks you should be able to perform. Y’all have to deal with snow, pickled fish, and other foreign inventions, and I just don’t know what to tell you.

What to carry

Every Southern man should be expected to have the following items on or near his person at all times, with no exceptions, every time you leave your home:

Leather belt

Pocket Knife

Shoes that won’t fall off your feet if you have to run


Man's best friends, and most useful tools.

Man’s best friends, and most useful tools.

Writing instrument (Pen or Pencil)

Clean underwear



Gun (not optional)

You may not need all of those things every time you leave home, but the women around you may need them. A Southern man should always be prepared to loan a woman a pen, or a knife, or provide light upon request.

What to know

Life is complicated and challenging; and if it isn’t, then you ain’t doing it right, Son. Robert Heinlein had a list of things a human being should know how to do. Below, you’ll find my list of things that every Southern man should know how to do by the time he’s old enough to drink.

Change a flat tire

Patch or plug a flat tire

Change the oil in a car and a lawn mower

Jump-start a car

Hold a baby

Change a diaper

Prepare a simple meal

Grow peppers, squash, cucumbers, and tomatoes

Learn to grow these!

Learn to grow these!

Use a shovel, and what kind of shovel to use for different jobs

Drive a car

Change the string in a string-trimmer

Trim a shrub

Solve for “x”

Calculate Area and Volume

Read a paper map

Use a compass

You should know what to do with this.

You should know what to do with this.

Create a simple website

Tell time with an analog clock or watch

Budget expenses

Make change without a computer

Talk respectfully to people older than you

Diagram a sentence

Fix leaky PVC pipe

Install a Water Heater

Hook up a washing machine

Do laundry

Fold a shirt properly

Pack for a trip

Build a fire

Bait a hook

Clean fish, squirrels, deer, and other wild game Do not make your woman-friend do it.

Open a bottle without an opener

Write a Resume

Write a cover letter

Dress properly for a job interview

Tie a half-Windsor knot

Preserve leather

Replace an alternator in a car or truck

Care for pets

Use an axe

Sew on a button

Iron a shirt

Respectfully ask a girl for a date


Sharpen a knife

Repair a bicycle

Operate a chainsaw safely

Use a circular saw safely

Operate a drill

Mitre a corner

Drive a nail

Bandage a wound

Perform CPR

Identify Poison Oak, Ivy, and Sumac

Identify venomous snakes

Shoot firearms accurately and safely

Load a pump shotgun

Store ammunition and flammables safely

Salute the Flag

Find any Book in the Bible

Pilot a small boat


Rescue someone who is drowning

Fell a tree in a safe direction

Stop or slow bleeding

Take unwelcome advice

Gracefully accept a compliment

I realize this list is long, but none of the items on this list are optional. I swear that I knew how to do every item on the list before I left my parent’s home back in the 1980’s. Some of the things I was taught in school, but most of them I learned from my parents or grandparents. Ladies: There is no intrinsic reason for y’all not to know how to do all those things, either. Y’all should at least learn to distinguish the men who know how to be a man from the ne’er-do-wells. It is my considered opinion, backed by 48 years of experience, that the men out there who don’t know how to do those things on the list are not really men at all; they are overgrown boys who will bring you nothing but grief.

Wednesday thinks you should also know how to pet a cat without messing up their fur.

Wednesday thinks you should also know how to pet a cat without messing up their fur.

I tried to include everything, but I may have missed one or two items.  I’d be glad to hear from y’all what y’all think men should know how to do.  Drop a comment here, or on Facebook.