Thursday, July 13, 2006

Mahnny City, San Sooey Parkway

We know if you're an Outsider. Just tell us where we live and we'll tell you if you belong here.

Mahanoy City:
Started out as Ma-ha-noy, but to the locals it's "Mahnny."

San Souci Parkway:
San Sooey to us, regardless of what they say in Paris.

Peabody:
Peabody was the governor in Massachusetts, but PEA-biddy is the town.

Barnstable:
Anything other than "BONstibble" makes you one of Them.

Pennsylvania:
Where you from? It's P.A. And it’s not a state; it’s a Commonwealth.

The Avenue:
Live anywhere in Wyoming Valley, with its multitude of Avenues, you'll soon find there is only one "The Avenue" -- Wyoming Avenue on the West Side. There are two "Cross Valley Expressways," but only one gets called "The Cross Valley"; the other is well-used, but mostly forgotten. You can cross the river on the North Street Bridge, the Pierce Street Bridge or the Veterans' Memorial Bridge; they're all the same piece of construction.

Spelling our city's name:
Nobody knows. At one time, it was "Wilkesburg"; later, it was "Wilkesbarre;" currently it is "Wilkes-Barre." With the latest spelling, it had an accent over the last "e" for a while, but that has been dropped. I don't think John Wilkes or Isaac Barre ever saw the place. It's pronounced "Barry," in case you were wondering. Not Bear (that's an animal), Berra (the baseball player), Bar (that's a tavern) or Barray (the French way).

8 Comments:

Blogger Reading Reader said...

Hey,Don't forget Shenandoah, which is pronounced "Chendo." Reading is not the same as reading a book...you say it like the color. Let's not even get into Kutztown...if you say it like "cuts" with scissors, you are saying a very very bad word in PA Dutch. Bethlehem is often "Bethlum" and Wapwallopen is well, Wapwallopen.

July 14, 2006 3:09 PM  
Anonymous Dave said...

Don't forget about the town of Pen Argyl. Locals pronounce it: "Pen R-gil not Ar*gyle.

July 14, 2006 3:23 PM  
Blogger Cold Josh Vail said...

Lest we not ignore St-Jean Chrysostome. But my favourite is WCAX's retired Wx man, Stuart Hall's home is Charlotte, (Cha-LOTTE), Vermont.

As for Pennsy...guess you have to live there to appreciate the deformations.

July 19, 2006 5:57 PM  
Anonymous ruthc said...

my favourite...is Charlotte, (Cha-LOTTE), Vermont.
I know the place well!

One of my favorites is Berlin (BER-lin) New Hampshire (never to be confused with the city in Germany.
Another favorite is how the locals pronounce Woonsocket, RI. Alas, I couldn't begin to type that out.

July 21, 2006 2:13 PM  
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