Southern Slang: A Mess?!?

What does it mean in the south if someone says "He's a mess?" This bawdy woman working at the photography place today said that my male child, age 8, was "a mess." I heard her, but I couldn't believe it, so I ignored her. Then - she said it a second time. I seriously wanted to... show more What does it mean in the south if someone says "He's a mess?"

This bawdy woman working at the photography place today said that my male child, age 8, was "a mess." I heard her, but I couldn't believe it, so I ignored her. Then - she said it a second time.

I seriously wanted to throw down but I just ignored her again. We left the store. After a minute's walk or so, I returned to the store.

I very politely explained that I was from the north and just wanted to know what exactly [what in the bloody hell] she meant by "a mess."

"Like what?" I go. "Sloppy and gross?"

"No," she said - "It means he's adorable!"

She was so suspect and shifty, though, I totally don't believe her.

Southerners?

Does "a mess" mean adorable?
Update: Edit: Yeah, I'm a ******* "immigrant." I never heard of this ****, because I would never, ever say anything that's even potentially negative about the child of someone to whom I was trying to sell pictures. Immigrant. Shut the ding-dang hell up, or however they say it down here. That's... show more Edit: Yeah, I'm a ******* "immigrant." I never heard of this ****, because I would never, ever say anything that's even potentially negative about the child of someone to whom I was trying to sell pictures.

Immigrant. Shut the ding-dang hell up, or however they say it down here. That's just asinine.
Update 2: Insanely inconsequential? You wanna go?

My in laws are here, so I'm pissed about everything.

And, no, I left "the mess" with his paternal grandmother and went back alone.
Update 3: Thank you, guys, for answering. I would definitely testify in any court of law that this is indeed completely, totally true. Except for those two dipshits referenced in previous edits, I appreciate your responses and dug your jokes. *thanks*
Update 4: PS Immigrant dude - How do I not seem like a total us honky from the way I talk (write) and from my picture, (photoshopped as it is)? There's, like, no way I could be anything else.
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