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Who knew Here Comes Honey Boo Boo had so much to teach?
TLC’s hit show stars Alana Thompson — aka “Honey Boo Boo Child” — a 6-year-old beauty pageant contestant who previously appeared on the network’s Toddlers & Tiaras, and her family, a group of self-described rednecks from a small town in Georgia. That includes her mom, June (aka “Mama”); dad Mike (“Sugar Bear”); and sisters Lauryn, 12 (“Pumpkin”), Jessica, 15 (“Chubbs”) and pregnant Anna, 17 (“Chickadee”).
Although enough viewers have found the show entertaining to make it a hit, others have criticized the network for what they perceive as exploitation of the family. But what the latter group might not “redneck-ognize” — to quote Alana — is that the show actually has introduced much of America to a whole new vocabulary and culture. Here’s what we’ve learned so far:
?1. The Redneck Games are like the Olympics — well, almost.
June, Mike and the four girls take part in the local Redneck Games, which feature competitions involving mud diving and bobbing for pig feet, among other activities. They’re really no different than the world’s greatest athletic competition, says June: “It’s all about Southern pride — similar to the Olympics, but with a lot of missing teeth and a lot of butt crack showing.”
2. A “forklift foot” is really just a mangled toe.
June refuses to take her socks off: “I’m very protective over my feet. I got run over, years ago, when I worked in a warehouse, I got run over with a forklift, and it just messed one of my toes, really, up really bad.” She even gets a pedicure with her socks on, with the nail technician painting toenails on top of her sock. But at the urging of her daughters, she finally takes her sock off in a dramatic unveiling that showed us … essentially what turned out to be a mangled toe. With gnats swarming around it.
3. Don’t be surprised if a pig poops on your kitchen table.
While June and her daughters are having a weigh-in in the kitchen, their pet pig, Glitzy (who since has been returned to the breeder), is just hanging out on the dining room table. Then suddenly, nature calls. The pig, who apparently was not potty-trained (can you potty-train a pig?), ended up going No. 2 on the kitchen table. The family promptly wiped it up, but did they use a disinfectant? Answer unclear.
4. Also don’t be surprised if said pig turns out to be gay.
After the family buys the pig for Alana — meant to cheer her up after she loses a beauty pageant — she has a conversation with June and Pumpkin about naming him Glitzy. “That’s a girl name, Glitzy,” Alana declares. “We’re gonna make it a girl pig, so he’s gonna be a little gay.” When Pumpkin replies that “it’s not gonna be gay,” Alana says, “Yes it is, ’cause we’re making it a girl pig, and it’s actually a boy pig.” When Pumpkin protests again that the pig won’t be gay, Alana says: “It can if it wants to. You can’t tell that pig what to do.”
5. Flatulence is an effective form of weight control.
“My mother has told me in the past that if you fart 12-15 times a day, you could lose a lot of weight, so I think I’m gonna lose a lot of weight ’cause I’m gonna fart a lot,” says Chubbs, who attempts to slim down on the show’s premiere. June later explains her belief: “If a person farts 12-15 times a day, then they’re healthy, so I guess my girls are healthy in that respect,” she notes, as her daughters are shown eating cheese puffs and chips.
6. “Beautimous” and “vajiggle-jaggle” are actual words.
As in: “Women that are of voluptuous size — put some clothes on. All that vajiggle-jaggle is not beautimous.” (So says June.)
7. Department store? Dumpster? Same thing.
The family heads to the Wilkinson County department store, which, yep, ends up being a dumpster in the middle of nowhere. “Everybody here calls it the local department store,” says June. “It’s actually the Wilkinson County dump. You will see people out there fishin’ in it.” Among their finds: a fan, a mattress, a baby bed, a toilet lid and a clothes iron. On a previous trip to the dumpster, “We got a surround-sound that somebody threw away,” June tells the camera. “The only thing that wasn’t working on it was one speaker.” Declares Alana after the “shopping” excursion, “They should have a Dumpster Diva Pageant ’cause I would win.”
8. “Spray tan is like poop in a can.”
Who can argue with that?
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