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And They Say Southerners Talk Funny

Updated on August 21, 2012

Yankees have been poking fun at southerners for their lifestyle and manner of speech since America’s beginning. And frankly, they’re getting a little tired of it. So, with that in mind, here’s a short list of words southerners have trouble understanding and other tidbits about northerners.

· Bahstin: city in MA.

· Bah: nothing to do with city in MA. It’s a place Yankees gather to drink alcoholic beverages and socialize

· Pahty: frequently held in a bah

· Ahnt: your mother or father’s sister

· Beah: malt beverage often consumed in a bah

· Bahn: a place to keep farm animals

· Cahn: corn

· Connah: where streets intersect.

· Fah: not close

· Fahk: eating utensil

· Gahden: a place to plant flowers and vegetables

· Hahbah: place where ships dock

· Hahvid: a preppy college

· Heah: designation of present location or done with the ears

· khakis: what you start a car with

· Pastah: pastor

· Pahster: nothing to do with church. Something eaten like spaghetti

· Pichah: man who throws baseball

· Shot: not tall

· Wottah: H2O

· Yeah: year

By now any southerner planning a trip north should be able to communicate and understand basic English. But even if they still can’t understand what someone is talking about, don't worry. They don't understand them either. However, they should remember their basic necessities may not be readily available. Yankees have no use for such things as grits and sweet tea. And they don’t cook anything with bacon grease, so it might be wise to bring a can along.

Any southerner planning to drive their own vehicle on the trip should remember, the weather gets much colder there and there may be snow and ice on the roads. Most drivers there are professionals at driving in those conditions. Southerners are not, they should stay home until the roads clear. Also, folks there tend to walk fast, so be prepared to get out of the way before getting get ran over.

Never holler "Hey, y'all, watch this!" No one will pay you the slightest attention, there’s nothing you could do they haven’t already seen. Also be advised, "He needed killing” is not a valid defense there and unlike folks in the south, people there do use turn signals.

Here are a few other things visiting southerners should avoid.

· Never get into an argument about Florida being a southern state. There are far more Yankees than Southerners living there.

· Don’t refer to the Civil War as "The War of Northern Aggression” or say there was nothing civil about it.

· Don’t refer to every soft drink as a Coke. Be specific.

· Don’t call all males "son" or refer to a woman as the "little lady."

Southerners traveling north should be ready to defend their dignity if they become involved in a battle of wits with locals making fun of them. Here are a few witty questions designed to cut them down to size.

· Ask a Yankee if it’s 11:30 PM Dec 31, 2012 in Texas and 12:30 AM Jan 1st in New York and you have a New York driver's license that expires in Jan 2007, does that mean your license has expired?

· In the song Yankee Doodle, is it the horse or the feather being called "macaroni?"

· Why is it before 9/11 they always showed the emergency broadcast system test, but on 9/11 never used it?

· What’s another word for "thesaurus”?

· In a New York City movie theater, which arm rest is yours?


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    • hockey8mn profile image


      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      I went to the University of South Carolina for a year and a half. Having lived in the south when I was younger, I never thought people would make fun of the way I talk, however, I still talked funny to my southern friends (guess I had been up north too long). Voted up and funny.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      You left out one of my favorites: P.S.D.S! It's a funny story about a young lady visiting cousins in Boston. She accompanies several of her female relatives to a local mall. The girls were admiring some items at the jewelry counter when one of the northern girls asked the young lady "Do you have P.S.D.S?" A little taken aback, the young lady says "Excuse me? Do I have what?" The northern girl says "P.S.D.S. do you have P.S.D.S?" Still baffled, the young lady responds, "I'm sorry I don't know what P.S.D.S means." The northern cousin gives a sigh as she motions to her earlobe, points to her own hoop earring and in a voice reserved for small children she says "You know, P.S.D.S!" (which translates to "pierced ears!)

    • JY3502 profile imageAUTHOR

      John Young 

      6 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

      Will do, and my name is John.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      6 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Oh, I know JY, but do listen to those Bert and I recordings, if'n you can get 'em. I guarantee it will be a good laugh for you.

    • JY3502 profile imageAUTHOR

      John Young 

      6 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

      ThelmaC, thanks so much for the nice comment.

    • ThelmaC profile image

      Thelma Raker Coffone 

      6 years ago from Blue Ridge Mountains, USA

      As a Southerner in Georgia, I absolutely love this. Plan to share it with some of my Damn Yankee friends ... especially about the theater seats!

    • JY3502 profile imageAUTHOR

      John Young 

      6 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

      aviannovice, actually I'm a military brat. Don't remember MA at all. I went to a different school every year. I too have experienced being disowned by various states because of my accent. In Washington state they asked what part of the south I was from and in the south I was one of those damn yankees. Anyway, the article was meant to be exaggerated humor.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      6 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      A few things about up noth(north). They still can't drive in bad weather. I took a lot of accident reports on rainy and snowy days. There was a restaurant in Maine called "The Damn Yankee." It was very popular. When I moved there as a kid, I was told that I talked funny, and only spent 3 years in NJ. That is the Downeast Maine accent, that is also used in Boston. You did a pretty good job with this piece. One thing that you will nevah see is the late night "Frankenstein's," which was some of the worst talent that you could evah see. It died in the early '70's. Evah hear those "Bert and I" records? By the way, I was born in AR, but the south still won't claim me, due to all the time I spent up north.

    • eHealer profile image


      6 years ago from Las Vegas

      JY, LOL!

    • JY3502 profile imageAUTHOR

      John Young 

      6 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

      shhhh, I was born in Framingham, MA.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      6 years ago from southern USA

      Ha. Very useful hub. Funny too. My dad was from Boston, and now I am from the south, so I had the best of both worlds, and I understood everything you said here. In His Love, Faith Reaper

    • gmarquardt profile image


      6 years ago from Hill Country, Texas

      Awesome! I loved it!

    • eHealer profile image


      6 years ago from Las Vegas

      JY, this is too funny. I'm from Brooklyn (but don't tell anyone), I've lived all over the world since and have lost my NY accent, (except when I get mad). This is a riot, voted up and shared!


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