Southern Talk : LUSENET : Country Families : One Thread

At choir practice tonight a bunch of ladies were talking instead of singing. One of the ladies said she needed to talk to me about "this thang." Well, one of our ladies is from Illinois. She wanted to know what a "THANG" was and we said a T-H-I-N-G!! She could not tell what we were saying. This got me to thinking about difference in speach patterns throughout the country.

Down here (South) we say YA'LL. I know that when I live in Missouri there were people who said YOU'UNS. I have to admit that my skin crawled every time they said that word!! Of course, I was corresponding with some friends in Scotland once and had to later explain to them what ya'll meant. They had never heard the word.

Can anybody think of any words that are regional, or ways of saying things? I think its fun to see all the differences found in our great country and Canada. I'm sure Cathy has a lot of differences besides spelling.

-- Ivy in NW AR (, October 31, 2001


I have been waiting for an appropriate time to mention this.

Clothes pegs=clothes pins; elastics=rubber bands; toot=passing gas!! There are others which I will try to post later.

By the way, when I lived in western PA, everybody said "youns"; a one- syllable word pronounced "yoonz" with the oo in book sound. Lately, I have found myself saying "aboat" instead of "about". In Maine we heard, "Pahk your cah in the dooryahd," which meant "park your car in the dooryard [parking lot]". In Georgia, someone wanted to know which days I could help cook for campmeeting, so she could put me on the "skedjew" for those days. And the southerners were "fattin' fer their rats" during the War Between the States.

-- Cathy N. (, October 31, 2001.

I was raised in Oklahoma - where we're alway "fixin" to do something, meaning getting ready to do something. My hubby and I moved to San Diego soon after we were married, and one day my boss asked me if I had finished that memo he asked for. I told him, "I was just fixing to." He looked at me and said, "Fixing two what?" He wanted to know what two things were broken. I had to backtrack real quick and explain that I was just getting ready to take care of it.

My hubby and I met a nice guy down in Georgia once who wanted to know if he could "carry" us out to dinner. That one took me a minute!

-- Cheryl in KS (, November 01, 2001.

Many years ago, I was married to a man from Missouri. When we were traveling through Georgia, we stopped at a quiet rural town and had lunch. The waitress's accent was so strong that I couldn't understand her and she couldn't understand my Wisconsin accent. My husband literally had to translate our conversation for us. the waitress and I thought it was hilarious.

-- Ardie/WI (, November 01, 2001.

Here's a recent example-I was talking to my son (10) about current events and I was stunned to hear him state that he thought some terrorists were good, that they always came from foreign countries and they they traveled around in groups from place to place. After talking to him further I realized that he had "Terrorists" and "Tourists" confused-which in this area, "Terrorists" are pronounced "Turrists" I got a laugh over that one.

-- Kelly in Ky (, November 01, 2001.

yup=yes, coke, soda water, soda pop, soda, polly pop, sody water =carbonated drinks. Wow Tx is full of em, I write more later.

-- Carol in Tx (, November 01, 2001.

First, I want it to be known that the war between the states was really the "War of Northern Agression". That said--- I've lived in many different places: Delaware, Florida, Missouri, Georgia, Alabama, Oklahoma and Maryland. Here are a two from MD's eastern Shore -- yeeah for yes, wooter for water.

-- Jo (, November 01, 2001.

One of my brothers lives in the country near Argyle, Texas. He told me that in that area small ponds are called "tanks". I wonder if this term is used in other states. While we were in Texas and talking in a check out line in a store, the lady next to us asked where we were from. She could tell from our "accent" that we weren't from Texas. I never knew I had an accent. I'm was raised in northeast Kansas. I still can't hear my accent. LOL

-- Janet in Kansas (, November 01, 2001.

Carol~ We say COKE for any carbonated beverage. It has caused a few problems when traveling up North. Must be a Southern thang. And I was also taught that The War Between the States (NOT Civil War, there was nothing civil about it!), was also the War of Northern Aggression.

-- Ivy in NW AR (, November 01, 2001.

My Grandad who was from Ohio used to call me a Hoosier hillbilly in that I am from Indiana but still talk southern. I pick up on accents easily. I say a lot of the ya'll and slur my words. It all depends on who I am around.

-- mindy (, November 01, 2001.

As a transplanted northerner I have learned that there is southern and there is country and this rural area has a lot of country sayings.

Give me an ideal (idea) what you would like for your birthday. Putting Up groceries means putting away groceries. I'd like to have died when x and so happened means I was embarrassed when that happened.

-- Ann Markson (, November 01, 2001.

I just got through puttin up the groceries, so now I'm fixin to get the kids and do homework. After that I'll rustle up some dinner and then I think I drink a big old Coke. Hope ya'll had a good day.

-- Ivy in NW AR (, November 01, 2001.

I wish I could hear all of you!!! I just love to hear different dialects. It is so much fun.

-- Melissa (, November 01, 2001.

lololol You guys are so much fun!!! I've been told by my husband that I get very southern sounding when I get excited or want to make a point. He loves it, since he's from Indianapolis. I think my favorite accent is from Wisconsin. I used to work with a girl from there and it wasn't just the sound, but the way she phrased her sentences that sounded so charming. We moved a lot as a child, so until now, I've not really had an accent at all. I love listening to my Okie Grandma talk. To this day, she calls me "Ars". lol Little does she know what that word really means. lol Iris

-- Iris (, November 01, 2001.

My father was from Bowlegs Oklahoma and my mother from wonders how they lasted as long as they did? In Missouri, folks leave out entire chucks of infinitives..."The dog wants in" "Barbara wants the store"..nobody says "to go"..never figured out why! In Texas, I wasleaving a grocery store when the clerk said "Come back now". I thought i had forgotten something, so I went back. She looked at me and said "Yes?". I said, "You told me to come back." She said. "Yes. please do." I said, "I'm here."..this went on for a full five was my first exposure to "Y'all come back now"..sort of like saying "Come back soon." Here in Alabama, the first week we lived here some neighbors came by. It was, by far, the weirdest thing. I felt as if I were in a foreign country. I asked the woman what were those tiny lizards called. She said something like, "Tem thangs wud be skeeterers izards." "Sketers? like mosquitoes?" "Noem, SKEETERERS like skeeterereing lon de gris."Hello?????? Turns out she was saying skittering lizards because they skitter along the grass. I could not understand a single word she said, but the BEST part was that she could not understand ME! I asked her how long they have lived here. She looked at her husband and he interpreted like I was speaking German or something! We even had to use hand gestures..picture the gesture for "skittering across the grass". Yup, that's it. Just this evening we had a friend stop by and tell us all about her new horse. We nodded politely and when she left, Neil turned to me and said, "Did you understand anything she said?"..nope..either her new horse is pregnant, OR is being gelded.....I like NYC expressions like, "go figure" LOL

-- lesley (, November 01, 2001.

Back in the mid 80's my (ex)husband was transferred to southern Illinois for a work-related project. We joined a small church, fell in love with the pastor and his family and made life long friends in Christ. One year the whole gang was invited to my son's birthday party. They came in and one of the ladies asked if he had gotten his 'weapon'? Weapon? Why would we give him a weapon? Turned out she was asking if he'd gotten his 'whipping.' LOL. (i.e. the one you're supposed to get to help you continue growing). Stef

-- Stef (, November 01, 2001.

Lesley, That's the funniest thing I've read in a long time. lol A two hankie piece. Did you ever find out about that horse? Iris

-- Iris (, November 01, 2001. is "pregut"

-- lesley (, November 02, 2001.

In northern Ny and southern Canada they end almost every sentence with A .Nice day out A ? They make everything into a question .And then say u think ? Nice day out u think ?

-- Patty {NY State} (, November 04, 2001.

Patty, I think it's spelled "EH", eh? What gets me is when I say something, and the person, who is agreeing with me, says, "I know, eh?"

-- Cathy N. (, November 05, 2001.

I once heard someone in Ohio say "pertnear". It took me a while to figure out what it meant, and don't "thank" I have ever "gotten" it yet. I am from Kentucky but have lived in a variety of places in the U.S. and overseas. At certain times my accent manages to show up. On one occasion using the word "well" came out sounding like "whale" to one of my co-workers. I threw them for a "loop". Here in D.C. one of my colleagues said, "It feels close in here." She meant that there was no air circulation in the room or "sticky". Regarding "soda" or "pop". I have found myself using both references with impunity -- I have even combined the two into "sodapop". Kentucky also refers to carbonated beverages as sodapop, sodypop and they have moonpies too. I think I know what a moonpie is and think they still make them - when my dad was a kid in Eastern Kentucky he used to drink RC (Royal Crown) and eat moonpies while he fished in the "crick". Something that just comes to mind now -- in Eastern Kentucky, grandmothers and grandfathers are referred to as "memaw" and "pepaw". I recall hearing "mimaw" and thought they were referring to "my Mom".

-- Theresa (, September 14, 2002.

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