Monday, August 18, 2008

The ignorance of Yanks

I can't remember where I have seen this map before, but it graphically represents the most obnoxious thing about going to school up north. What could possibly have been more annoying than all the Yankees fans who went the University of Michigan?*

The ubiquitous mis-pronunciation of the name of the greatest substance on earth. As you can see from the map above, the red represents the correct terminology for a carbonated beverage - "Coke". In the blue area, they call it "pop". WTF? Pop? I could understand (but not really forgive) the use of "soda", as you get in the Northeast and the West Coast. But "pop"? NO! Give me a Coke!

Pop. It feels entirely wrong in my mouth, just trying to form the word. Uttering it felt like a betrayal (so I did this as rarely as possible). If you are a native of Atlanta, you probably know what I'm talking about. (I had a friend in high school who half-facetiously threatened to beat up anyone who dared order a Pepsi in his presence.) For this, and for many other reasons, I never felt truly Southern until I lived up North.

Anyway, we now have a graphical representation of what I will call the "Ignorance Belt", which runs from Western New York state, across the rust belt, through the plains, badlands, and mountains, all the way to the Northwest coast. It turns out the rest of the country really is as stupid as we think!

Also, what the hell is going on with Alaska? Make up your damn minds!

*Common exchange at Michigan:
Me: "Where are you from?"
Yank: "New York City! Wha What!! We represent!" (I'm not joking)
Me: "Oh, where in the city?"
Yank: "Well, actually, just outside the city in New Jersey/Long Island/Westchester")
Me: "How thug life."


  1. Hey now, let's not get crazy here.

    Where I grew up (south central Indiana, on a farm), we called it "pop," primarily because the number one soft drink was neither Coke nor Pepsi but rather a cream soda-ish thing called Big Red.

    I'm perfectly OK with the generic name being "Coke," but "soda" drove me and my wife (a native of southwestern Ohio) nuts when we lived in western Massachusetts.

    (who drinks diet Coke, for the record)

  2. I would bet most people said they were from "New York," not "New York City," to which every single person NOT from New York replied, "Oh where? The city?" And then when the New Yorkers said, "No, just outside the city," the listeners' eyes either glaze over or they pretend to be interested in and/or know your particular town.

    Just my two cents!


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