What Slang Terms Drive You Nuts?
Every area has their regional slang terms that either don’t make sense, drive you crazy, or both. New Jersey is no exception.
I’ve covered regionalisms before, specifically quirky towns (Forked River, Barnegat vs. Barnegat Light, etc), but this time we’re talking about sayings. Here are a few I’ve encountered in my travels, as well as right here at home:
“So don’t I”
Seriously, that’s an actual saying that I actually encountered when I lived in Northern Connecticut. At first I thought it was just an idiosyncrasy of a friend’s family, and then I heard someone use it on the news. It goes like this: “My friends want to go to the beach this weekend. So don’t I”. But here’s thing, they really mean that they do want to go. Where this first came from and how it spread in the local area, I have no idea.
We’ve all heard this New Englandism. “It’s wicked cold”, “I had a wicked good time”, “wow, that’s wicked expensive”. Still makes me bristle a little.
“The ____ needs ____”
This is a Pennsylvania one, I have to give examples: “the dog needs walked”, “the car needs washed”, “the fridge needs fixed”. Yeah, without “to be”. This one in particular used to drive me nuts.
Now, let’s get to New Jersey:
The first time I heard this one was when I moved back to NJ a few years ago, I was at a fragrance store at the Jackson Outlets and I was testing a cologne. A young woman saw what I was testing and said, “that’s a bangin’ cologne!”. I was confused at first because, frankly, I wasn’t sure if that was a good thing or a bad thing. (For the record, it’s a good thing).
“Not for nothin'”
This one is a little more of a North Jerseyism than around here, but you’ll still hear it on occasion in Ocean County. I love my step-sister, who grew up in Union County, dearly, but this is one of her old standbys, “not for nothin’, but I thought the party was great”, “not for nothin’, but she never calls me either”. Not for nothin’, but the best way I can describe what it means is “for what it’s worth…”
All of us here in Ocean County knows what a Benny is. If you don’t, you probably are one.
So tell me what I missed! What are some local sayings (or not so local sayings) that you’ve come across that either make no sense to you, drive you nuts, or that you even kind of like and have started using yourself? Leave a comment below and let us know!