ANSWERS: 2
  • I'm from Detroit, Michigan, but now live in Northeastern Vermont. I've been here more than ten years, but I still run into a lot of language barriers. Vermont is an in-homogeneous mixture of Appalachian (park the cawr in the gararrge) and New England (pak the cah in the doh yod) dialects, with a few of its own quirks. Some of the most Vermont-y lexicon: Creemee (soft-serve ice cream), Jeezum Crow! (Wow!), [He/she] had the radish (he/she is no good anymore/done for), I'm goin' downstreet (I'm going to go into town), Dooryard (driveway), Hamburg (ground beef). There's much more, you could hear someone say "Winna‚Äôs a-comin', gotta go down cellah an' get the laddah, soz I can clumb up the roof an' clean up the chimbly. Don't want my fambly t'freeze this winner, 'cuz it'll be wicked cold - Jeezum Crow!."
    • mushroom
      That's more of a regional dialect than idiomatic. Idioms that might be recognizable throughout the country, regardless of dialect, are "off the wall," or "spill the beans."
    • bostjan64
      Idioms are groupings of words that bear a meaning not correlated to the meanings of the individual words. "Had the radish" is a perfect example of idiomatic speech. I doubt you could find many idioms that are universal parts of an entire language and not dependent on dialect. Remember that English is a language and has dialects specific to many countries: Australia, for example.
    • Elena Artukh
      Thank you very much for your detailed response! It is very helpful! :-)))
  • In Detroit, there was also a weird lexicon of confusing speech. Two opposite street corners were "kiddy corner." If you were going to the "party store," you were probably either buying cigarettes, booze, or junk food. If you went to the grocery store and asked for "soda," they'd sent you to the baking aisle, not knowing that you wanted "pop." In the city where I grew up, there was a peculiar way of talking that even people in the suburbs didn't understand. For example, if you were driving your car, and you needed a place to put your "pop," you could place it in the "cuppaduh" (cup holder). We'd also use words like "Sike!" (I'm kidding!) "Geeked" (excited), "popo" (police), "fiend" (drug addict), "wranged" (hyperactive), "A'it" (alright), "In like Flynn" (success), "Like a mug" (used to express superlative - as in "That dog was big like a mug"/"That dog was bigger than a mug" - That was the biggest dog I've ever seen). You could also have the following exchange: "Yo, whaddup doe?" "Nun, y'ait?" "Yeah." That particular conversation has no meaning whatsoever, but would be two people pleasantly acknowledging each other.
    • Elena Artukh
      Thank you!

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