10 Things You Don’t Know About @BlakeShelton (#11-Get To Know His Hillbilly Bone)

by Cristin Maher SOURCE Taste Of Country

Happy birthday, Blake Shelton! Country's favorite funny guy (and the rising media darling), who was born on June 18, 1976 in Ada, Oklahoma, just turned 35.

Shelton fell in love with country music growing up and moved to Nashville after he graduated from high school. In 1998, Shelton signed a record deal and now, more than a decade later, he just topped Billboard's country charts with his ninth No. 1 single, 'Honey Bee.' In honor of Shelton and his day of birth, we are counting down the 10 Things You Didn't Know About Blake Shelton, from the craziest gifts he has ever received to his traumatizing early days as a tiny pageant king.

10. He was invited to join the Grand Ole Opry on Twitter.
The 'All About Tonight' singer was the first person to ever be invited to the Grand Ole Opry via Twitter. The actual tweet read: “@blakeshelton, you're invited to join the Grand Ole Opry. See you on 10/23/2010!” Shelton, being the active Twitter user he is, promptly responded, “Hmmm… Let me think… OK!!!!!!!!”

9. His favorite engagement gifts were a flask and a shotgun.
For their engagement, Shelton and his now wife Miranda Lambert received matching his and her's flasks and shotguns. The gifts were a big hit with couple, who love to hunt — and drink (Sprite Zero and Bacardi!). Talking toPEOPLE, Lambert gushed, “We were outside the city limits, so we went right out of the tent and tried them out. It's a real shotgun wedding!”

8. Shelton used to have a pet turkey … named Turkey.
In an interview with CMT in 2003, Shelton spoke of his hopes to bring Turkey to the next awards show he attended. “Up until this point, [Turkey]'s been to Arkansas one time. He has been to Oklahoma, which is where he was born, and now he lives in Tennessee. So, I feel like, without me, he doesn't get to do things, and I feel a responsibility to show him the world,” he said.

7. A fan once terrified him by giving him an iguana as a gift.
“We were playing a fair, and a few people were handing me stuffed animals and flowers, but one person handed me a paper sack,” Shelton told The Boot back in 2008. “So I took all the stuff back to the bus. I put the sack in my lap and opened it, and a live iguana jumped out of the sack and onto my shirt. I screamed like a little girl! I think it took a year off my life — it scared the crap out of me.”

6. Some of his biggest pet peeves: under-dressed people and bare feet.
Shelton once told CMT that he hates when sees “somebody standing on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry or some formal place and they're wearing a T-shirt and baseball cap,” calling it “unacceptable.” He also hates bare feet, pleading with fellow artists to “cover [their] stinkin', nasty feet” in music videos. According to Shelton, “Flip-flops aren't even acceptable.”

5. He believes he has one of the “crappiest tattoos in the world.”
Shelton drew his own tattoo, and it's supposed to be deer tracks since he loves to hunt. However, people often mistake it for one thing in particular: “To this moment, people still come up to me and say, 'Man, ladybugs … that's cool. What does that mean to you?' I probably have the crappiest tattoo — not only in country music — but maybe the world,” he said. He later had the barbed wire added to make the tattoo “more manly.”

4. He still defends the mullet he used to rock in the '90s.
“Nobody else in the world seems to think it was as awesome as I still think it was,” Shelton said. The singer used to have a mullet, and he refused to cut it despite people telling him he looked bad. “Basically, it has gotten to the point where it is just a matter of pride. And I know it looks like crap, but it is just more fun to me to irritate people than cut my hair to satisfy them,” he said of his days with long locks.

3. His mom was more excited than he was when he was named one of the Sexiest Men Alive.
“I didn't really understand what the deal was. So I said some stupid stuff! Then I found out it was a big deal … so I don't think they know me very well!” Shelton said of the acknowledgment from PEOPLE. “But my favorite thing about it is that I know my mom, who cuts hair in Ada, Okla., will cut that page out of the magazine and tape it to her mirror and point it out to everybody who comes to the shop.”

2. 'The Voice' coach used to hate reality television shows.
When asked what reality show he would like to appear on (if he ever were to), Shelton responded, “I hate reality shows. But if I had to be on one, I'd have to say 'Realtree Road Trips' on the Outdoor Channel.” Well, we're sure his opinion on reality TV has changed slightly considering he is a coach on 'The Voice' — which is definitely a far-cry from 'Realtree Road Trips.'

1. He used to be a pageant kid.
This is just too good to be true. “My mom entered me into a pageant [when I was 6 or 7-years-old]. I still don't know why and it's still the worst experience of my life, being in a pageant,” Shelton told CMT. “That has to have been the first one, and I can't remember because she put me in like two or three in a row there. And I remember singing 'Cat Scratch Fever' by Ted Nugent, and 'Old Time Rock 'n' Roll' by Bob Seger — [they] were probably my two signature songs.” We wonder what his costumes looked like! To Blake's mom: Please put that on YouTube ASAP!