TagRegions of the United States

Chihoo! A Samoan Cry

Rachel from San Diego wonders whether the exuberant Hawaiian cry chihoo! is onomatopoetic — that is, if the sound of the word resembles what it actually denotes. The cry is not originally Hawaiian. It’s a version of the Samoan war cry known as...

Prepone: Put Before

Aru in Omaha, Nebraska, says friends and colleagues tease him about his use of prepone, usually used to mean “move an appointment to an earlier date or time.” It’s a word commonly used in Indian English, is morphologically sound, and...

Six of One, Half Dozen of the Other

A woman in Council Bluffs, Iowa, says that when her mother was indicating that two things were roughly equal, she’s say they were six and one half dozen of the other. The more common version is six of one and half a dozen of the other or six...

Limestone Belt

The Indiana Limestone Belt has an abundance of this type of rock. The limestone industry figured prominently in the movie Breaking Away, in which affluent residents of Bloomington, Indiana, referred derisively to quarry workers and their families as...

New Yorkers Stand On Line

A New York City man wonders if there’s any truth to the story that New Yorkers say they stand on line, as opposed to in line, because of lines painted on the floor at Ellis Island. Although such lines are useful for managing large queues, the...

Belt Regions of the United States

You probably know about the Rust Belt and the Bible Belt, but have you heard of the Smile Belt? How about the Biscuit Belt or the Pine Belt? The word belt is sometimes used to denote a loosely defined geographical area. This is part of a complete...

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