April 12, 2011

Top 10 New Englandisms

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Talk to a hahdcore New Englandah for long enough and you’ll inevitably hear a New Englandism, or a distinctively New England expression. Apaht from dropping our ‘R’s, we New Englandahs commonly use words and phrases which, to outsidahs, may sound like a bunch of gahbage. But to us, all of these New Englandisms make perfect sense and our conversations -- and culture -- would be a lot less colorful without them. 

10. Where’s the Clickah?

A clicker is an ultimate source of power in a New England home, as the clicker-holder gets to control the television. Yes, a clicker is a TV remote control. Back in the day, before all of those fancy, rubbery buttons began appearing on clickers, clickers had big, plastic buttons that would click when you pressed them. Hence, the clicker.

9. Down Cellah

New England homes do not have basements: they have cellars. Down cellar is where you keep your old golf clubs, your camping gear and your grandfather’s century-old collection of baseball caps.

8. Drink a Frappe

No, not a frappé, which is some type of fancy, foamy coffee drink: a frappe. A frappe is like a milkshake, only it’s way better. This is due both to its higher ratio of ice cream to other ingredients and to the fact that it’s made in New England.

7. Eat a Hoodsie

A Hoodsie is one of those small cups of ice cream that the Massachusetts-based Hood milk company produces. You know, HOOD, like the blimp. A typical Hoodsie comes with a flat wooden spoon/stick and is either chocolate, vanilla or - the best option - a combination of both.

6. Add Some Jimmies

If you really feel like pigging out, you can add some jimmies to the top of your Hoodsie. Jimmies are sprinkles, the popular sugary ice cream topping, however, not all sprinkles qualify as jimmies. In New England, "jimmies" refer specifically to the brown, chocolate sprinkles, while "sprinkles" refer to multi-colored sprinkles.

5. Bang a Left

Making a left turn is way too boring for fast-paced, quick-talking New Englanders. Instead, we bang lefts and - if travel requires it - we bang rights as well. You would commonly hear this expression when a person is giving directions, as in “bang a left at the second set of lights,” or “bang a right when you pass the gas station.”

4. Go to the Packie

What’s a packie? Why it’s just a short term for a package store, of course. What’s a package store? Wow, you really aren’t from New England. A package store is a liquor store, where we New Englanders can stock up on beer, wine, whiskey and other delights that our Puritan forefathers would disapprove of.

3. Turn on your Blinkahs

All New England drivers hate when the cars in front of them make sharp turns without first putting on their blinkers…you know, those lights that blink on and off...directional signals.

2. Drink from the Bubblah

True New Englanders have a strict policy of never drinking from water fountains. Instead, we only drink from bubblers. A fountain is a thing out in the yard.

1. Wicked

Put simply, "wicked" is the most powerful adjective in a New Englander's vocabulary. If you're down cellar and you can see your breath, you might say that it's "wicked cold!" Alternatively, if you're eating a Hoodsie that is loaded with jimmies, you might say that it's "wicked good!"

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