50 Unique Words and Phrases From Each State That Only Locals Understand

Sometimes when I'm having a conversation with my coworkers in New York, I'll mention something about getting a can of pop or how I swept my bedroom last night, and I've dealt with the chuckling that ensues when they realize it's my Midwest slang slipping out. On the flip side, I will argue with a New Yorker about being in a line for something rather than on a line until we're both blue in the face. Each state and region of the country has its own little pocket of uniqueness when it comes to linguistics, and if you keep reading, you can find out some of the most interesting words and phrases from each of the states.

Flickr user waiferx

  1. Alabama: Coke — pretty much all soft drinks
  2. Alaska: Sourdough — native Alaskan
  3. Arizona: Bear down — go get 'em
  4. Arkansas: Cattywampus — crazy/off-kilter
  5. California: Hella — a lot
  6. Colorado: Dagwood — layered sandwich
  7. Connecticut: Glawackus — imaginary monster
  8. Delaware: Baggin' up — laugh loudly
  9. Florida: Snowbirds — people who escape cold weather to come to warmer climates
  10. Georgia: Mash — press, as in a button
Flickr user stevensnodgrass

  1. Hawaii: Da kine — a phrase that means both everything and nothing and can be used in any way
  2. Idaho: Boise — locals pronounce the name of the state capital as Boy-see, not Boy-zee
  3. Illinois: Brewski — beer
  4. Indiana: Hoosier — native of Indiana
  5. Iowa: Pop — the correct way to say soda
  6. Kansas: Shucky darn — exclamation meaning something like "wow"
  7. Kentucky: Holler — valley between mountains
  8. Louisiana: Banquette — sidewalk
  9. Maine: Leaf peepah — people who come from out of town to see the beautiful Fall foliage
  10. Maryland: Snowball — snow cone
Flickr user sierratierra

  1. Massachusetts: Wicked — crazy good
  2. Michigan: Geez-o-Pete — exclamation in place of cursing
  3. Minnesota: Uff da — nonsense phrase of surprise
  4. Mississippi: Lick of sense — if something doesn't make a lick of sense, it makes no sense
  5. Missouri: Warsh — wash
  6. Montana: Nice speakin' at ya — I enjoyed talking to you
  7. Nebraska: Waddy — rancher
  8. Nevada: Toke — tip or token
  9. New Hampshire: Janky — trashy or not good
  10. New Jersey: Jug handle — an intersection that forces you to turn right to turn left
Flickr user mealmakeovermoms

  1. New Mexico: Christmas — red and green chiles
  2. New York: On line — instead of being in line
  3. North Carolina: Bless your heart — you're so sweet
  4. North Dakota: Hot dish — casserole
  5. Ohio: Sweeper — vacuum
  6. Oklahoma: Quakenado — an earthquake that occurs at the same time as a tornado
  7. Oregon: Jojos — potato wedges
  8. Pennsylvania: Yinz — you guys
  9. Rhode Island: Bang a u-ey — make a U-turn
  10. South Carolina: Surcee — unexpected gift
Flickr user dcoetzee

  1. South Dakota: Don't ya know — phrase used at the end of statements that doesn't really mean anything
  2. Tennessee: Fixin' — going to
  3. Texas: Yes/No siree bob — most definitely yes or no
  4. Utah: Oh my heck — nicer way to say "holy sh*t"
  5. Vermont: Creemee — soft serve
  6. Virginia: Et up — eaten up
  7. Washington: Jumble sale — yard or garage sale
  8. West Virginia: Britches — pants
  9. Wisconsin: Bubbler — drinking fountain
  10. Wyoming: Dout — put out a fire