1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi all! No longer will threads be closed after 1000 (ish) messages. We may close if one gets so long to cause an issue and if you would like a thread closed to start a new one after a 1000 posts then just use the "Report Post" function. Enjoy!

Local idioms

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Bostonfan, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. flyingsit

    flyingsit Well-Known Member

    My husband grew up in the New Orleans suburbs and the people there use "coke" for all kinds of soda. "What kind is coke do you want?"

    They also say they are making groceries instead of going grocery shopping.
  2. Myskate

    Myskate New Member

    Do you have a couch, a sofa or a settee? I think the Midwestern term is a couch.
  3. stanhope

    stanhope Active Member

    Yes, in the Midwest it is a "couch." I have also heard "Davenport" or "sofa."
  4. Grannyfan

    Grannyfan Active Member

    My mother always called it a divan, but I haven't heard that term in a long time.
    Most people I know say couch.
  5. KikiSashaFan

    KikiSashaFan Well-Known Member

    I grew up in BC, Canada. We say pop, couch, dinner, flip flops, sprinkles and basement. I've never heard of bubbler or jimmies.
  6. El Rey

    El Rey Well-Known Member

    I live in Texas. If someone asked me where they could find a bubbler, I would think they they were looking for a marijuana pipe. Typing "bubbler" into google shows the same thing.
    PeterG and (deleted member) like this.
  7. Ozzisk8tr

    Ozzisk8tr Well-Known Member

    Many (very very many) years ago I called mine a bubble-o-matic... :shuffle:
    now I just call it a bong ;)
  8. Wiery

    Wiery Well-Known Member

    Another charming Alabama/blue collar southern idiom is "where you at?" instead of "Where are you?" Picture Larry the Cable Guy saying it; that's just how it sounds... :rolleyes:
  9. NinjaTurtles

    NinjaTurtles Teenage Mutant

    There's a good clip of Brian on Family Guy not knowing where to place a set of keys, as he's directed to the "davenport", "divan", and "chesterfield". :lol:

    Here is one my husband was talking about last night: sub vs. hoagie vs. grinder vs. hero vs. bomber vs. po' boy.
  10. cruisin

    cruisin Banned Member

    We say couch or sofa. Husband's from western PA. A few colloquialisms there. One that always makes me :confused: is "they come over last night" instead of they came over last night. They also put accents on different syllables in words.
    For instance: umbrella - they put the accent on um, we put the accent on brel.
  11. Aceon6

    Aceon6 Hit ball, find ball, hit it again.

    Native New Englander here (NH to CT to MA). Gramma had a cellar, we have a basement. In my circle, cellar has a dirt or rock floor, basement has a poured floor. You store vegetables, canned items and home made wine in the cellar. Your laundry room is likely in the basement.

    Surprised no one has mentioned tonic. In NH, that's soda pop. If you ask for a soda in some parts of NH, you'll get a fizzy stomach settling medicine.
  12. cruisin

    cruisin Banned Member

    Yes, that's my understanding too. My grandma had a cellar, it had a partly dirt/rock floor and she stored canned goods, and my grandfather made & stored wine (and a lot of vinegar :lol:) down there.

    I think of tonic as the bitter, carbonated soda that you put in with gin.
  13. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

    I remember hearing chesterfield a lot as a kid. Nowadays I only hear sofa and couch (southern Ontario).
  14. cruisin

    cruisin Banned Member

    ^^ I wonder if Chesterfield was a brand name or a specific style for a couch. It could have been a brand name that became a generic, like Kleenex for tissues.
  15. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

    Our cellar had a poured floor, not a dirt one. We referred to it as the cellar; we never used the word basement. Don't know why, but it was the cellar, not the basement.

    ETA: Maybe it has to do with the age of the homes. My hometown, founded in 1654, had mostly older homes - all with cellars. Newer homes, circa 1950s post WWII, had basements, finished or otherwise.
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2012
  16. Grannyfan

    Grannyfan Active Member

    I hear that all the time. The smart-mouth, juvenile answer is, "Between the "a" and the "t." :)
  17. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

    According to Wiki:

    KatieC and (deleted member) like this.
  18. Fergus

    Fergus Well-Known Member

    I got ripped to shreds for that in college! :lol:

    NYC/LI we call them "heros". Once on vacation in Maine, we called the local village pizza place and I asked for a meatball hero, to which the guy on the phone responded: "You want a hero? Call Superman". :rofl:

    Papa Fergus grew up when Long Island was very rural. Although his house had a "basement", the veggies my nana preserved were stored in a special room in the basement that they called the "cellar". Both had cement floors. (Like someone said above, probably just called that due to family weirdness.......)
  19. pat c

    pat c Well-Known Member


    The house I grew up in had a cellar and it's quite deep. So maybe the definition is how it was made and also the depth of it. Ours was probably 10' deep and had stairs that a goat would have found hard to climb as they were so steep.

    The prairies used chesterfield as well but now it's fallen into disuse and everyone uses couch or sofa.
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2012
  20. suep1963

    suep1963 Well-Known Member

    All the interstates around Chicago have a name--and if you are listening for the traffic report, you'd better know the names--they never use the numbers! (Sister and bil live around there) Although after all the construction, most people were calling it the Damn Ryan.

    I'm from southwest WI--and we had bubblers. They are different from drinking fountains. Bubblers bubble constantly--and they are seasonal. They shut them off in the winter so they don't freeze. We still have some in town. I say both soda and pop, but I've lived out east in Philadelphia and DC and spent time in the Denver area. I don't remember where or when I used which terms.

    Next question--is it a sucker or a lollipop?
  21. Aceon6

    Aceon6 Hit ball, find ball, hit it again.

    Lollipop In the northeast as far as I'm aware
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2012
  22. cruisin

    cruisin Banned Member

    So, I guess it's both. A colloquialism and a style.

    Love it! :lol:

    Lollipop, but we would know what a sucker is edible and trainable :D
  23. Veronika

    Veronika gold dust woman

    Really late to the game here. :eek: Yes, I grew up in "bubbler" country, but I don't really say it...not sure why. I say "drinking fountain."

    I've done an informal poll about "bubblers" where I live now (northeast Iowa) and they really weren't aware of it. But they say "anymore" instead of "nowadays"--which I find very confusing. Example--"My desk is a mess anymore." :huh:
  24. triplelooped

    triplelooped New Member

    I'm from the South and we don't use bubbler. I first heard from one of my professors at Indiana University Bloomington, but she was originally from Maine.

    Here, we use the phrase "slap out" if we want to emphasize that we absolutely DO NOT have something. For example, we are slap out of coke.

    You can also use the phrase right slap--I got stuck right slap in the middle of that situation.

    Coke is a coke, sprite, diet coke, etc. When you order a coke in a restaurant, the waitperson will most likely ask, "What kind or what flavor?"

    The evening mean can be either supper or dinner.

    To say someone is a mess generally means that someone is mischivous, not that they are mentally unstable. I made the mistake of describing a student with a wicked sense of humor as a mess when I was teaching in Indiana and my colleagues looked scandalized! :)
  25. DCA

    DCA Member

    I'm intrigued to read the only Northern California was the only place outside Canada to use "chesterfield" for couch. I was born in San Francisco, as was my mother, and I can still hear her voice saying "Get off the green chesterfield!" whenever our dog was discovered there.
  26. cruisin

    cruisin Banned Member

    I think of supper/dinner as a generational thing. My Grandparents/Mom said supper, I say dinner.
  27. Ozzisk8tr

    Ozzisk8tr Well-Known Member

    You gave me a twitch in my loins with that line. By that I mean my washing is ready to be put on the clothes line, or hills hoist. How many are now going :confused:
  28. Bostonfan

    Bostonfan Well-Known Member

    I was talking about this with some other friends, and they came up with a few. If these are regional variations - that's news to me :)

    "Butt" - as in a cigarette. People will say "I'm going to smoke a butt". (Sounds really bad when you step back and consider it objectively)

    "Fluff a nutter" - A peanut-butter and marshmellow sandwich. Is that really a regional thing?

    "Packie" - where you go to buy beer. Short for package store, although I'm not sure why liquor stores are referred to in this way.
  29. Ozzisk8tr

    Ozzisk8tr Well-Known Member

    How funny! In Australia if you said "Pakie" they would think you were talking about a Pakistani (dreadful I know, but hey, we're convicts). Fluff a Nutter sounds like some porn movie thing (no I have never met a real fluffer...that I didn't like, or at least have naughty thoughts about :shuffle:).
    My mother keeps telling me when I leave her house to "Turn the snib on the door". Snib? Really?
  30. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

    When it comes to beer localisms, I would think that Canadians rule :lol:

    Here a pack of 24 beers is called a "two-four" or simply a "case."

    Discovered an oddity when purchasing liquor a few years back in New York. The bottle I wanted was behind the counter, so I asked for the "40 of Stoli." Apparently liquor is one of the few instances where America has embraced the metric system, because after some confusion, he realized that I wanted the one liter bottle. Ditto what we all call a "26er" is a 750 ml.