Words Lost Over Time or Just Used Locally

day-day

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Jan 2, 2005
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I use a few words that sometimes earn me funny looks from folks. Words that I was familiar with as a kid but have been replaced by other words or maybe just not used elsewhere. Do you have any words like this?

Here are some examples which I hope explain:

Sweet milk; growing up, there was buttermilk and sweet milk and occasionally chocolate milk. I don't hear sweet milk used anymore; just plain or white milk (along with the various percentages of fat)

Locusts; when used to reference cicadas. I know what cicadas are and the racket they make but I still call them locusts.

Bream; this may be a little bit of a stretch but we pretty much used bream whenever talking about bluegills even though it is used often for various sunfish. For example, if we caught bluegill, pumpkins seeds, shellcracker, etc., we would call the bluegill "bream" and everything else by their other names.

To get even more localized, folks on the river in Florida where my father grew up called bass "trout" and chain pickerel were called "cypress trout".

I don't like calling dolphin "Mahi-Mahi" (think I'll add this to the post about words that are like fingernails on a chalkboard.

Oleo; my wife and I were stopped by a younger person who was shopping using a recipe that called for oleo. We were familiar because my mother's recipes call for oleo which I think was one of the first margarines and was used generically.
 
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AlistarWills

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Jul 26, 2006
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May I encourage you to continue to use those words or phrases that you recognize are dying out.
My grandmother used to call a paper sack a "poke". Haven't heard the term since she passed. There are menu others. While some will call is backward and give funny looks, it is your heritage that's is dying away.
I think the old southern "foghorn leghorn" accent is graceful and beautiful but those that speak it are dying out. I blame television where everyone has been taught to use a mid-western accent.
 

Bamaro

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Oct 19, 2001
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I use a few words that sometimes earn me funny looks from folks. Words that I was familiar with as a kid but have been replaced by other words or maybe just not used elsewhere. Do you have any words like this?

Here are some examples which I hope explain:

Sweet milk; growing up, there was buttermilk and sweet milk and occasionally chocolate milk. I don't hear sweet milk used anymore; just plain or white milk (along with the various percentages of fat)

Locusts; when used to reference cicadas. I know what cicadas are and the racket they make but I still call them locusts.

Bream; this may be a little bit of a stretch but we pretty much used bream whenever talking about bluegills even though it is used often for various sunfish. For example, if we caught bluegill, pumpkins seeds, shellcracker, etc., we would call the bluegill "bream" and everything else by their other names.

To get even more localized, folks on the river in Florida where my father grew up called bass "trout" and chain pickerel were called "cypress trout".

I don't like calling dolphin "Mahi-Mahi" (think I'll add this to the post about words that are like fingernails on a chalkboard.

Oleo; my wife and I were stopped by a younger person who was shopping using a recipe that called for oleo. We were familiar because my mother's recipes call for oleo which I think was one of the first margarines and was used generically.
People who didn't know any better, and there were a lot of them, thought Flipper was on the menu and wouldn't order it. Someone decided to use the Hawaiian name instead and people were no longer turned off by it.
 

day-day

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Jan 2, 2005
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Bartlett, TN (Memphis area)
Yeah referring to bass as "trout" is fairly common in South Alabama too.
Well this was in LA. (Choctawhatchee River)

People who didn't know any better, and there were a lot of them, thought Flipper was on the menu and wouldn't order it. Someone decided to use the Hawaiian name instead and people were no longer turned off by it.
Exactly but I'm not going to call it mahi-mahi. If a restaurant puts "Dolphin" on the menu then I'll order it...:)
 

Tidewater

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Mar 15, 2003
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Two Alabama variants I have not heard elsewhere is "slap," as in "We are slap out of milk."
Another is "tags," for automobile license plates. I have not heard that elsewhere. In Virginia they are "plates."
 

Bazza

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Dear friend of mine - landscaper like me - recently passed away from pancreatic cancer. Very sad...only in his 50's and one of the best humans I have ever known.

He used to use the word 'tote" when referring to bringing something from one place to another.

He's the only one I ever heard use that word.
 

G-VilleTider

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Aug 17, 2006
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Bream. As a kid, we caught bream and sunfish with crickets and shellcracker with worms. Didn't even hear bluegill till years later.
 

DzynKingRTR

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Dec 17, 2003
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Sweet Milk? How old are you? I only heard my grandmother use that term. She was 87 in 1995 when she died. I have never heard anyone else use that term.
 

day-day

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Locusts aren't cicadas. Locusts are a type of grasshopper
Are you serious Clark? Kind of the point as to why I mentioned it. I know it and still use "locusts"; I'd rather explain that it may be a Southern thing than lose the tradition.

Am I the only one that's heard this? http://www.cicadamania.com/cicadas/when-is-a-locust-not-a-locust/

The smell after Taco Bell is also "rurnt"
This reminds me of another word. Anyone else use the word "grunt" for going #2?
 

2003TIDE

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Jul 10, 2007
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I'm from small town alabama and have never heard cicadas called locusts. It's 2 different things. I've heard them called katydid's, but I'm pretty sure those are different. cicada's come out every several years in a cycle. katydids are out every summer in the trees making loud noises.


I'm pretty sure what you think are cicada's aren't actually cicadas
 
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day-day

Hall of Fame
Jan 2, 2005
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Bartlett, TN (Memphis area)
I'm from small town alabama and have never heard cicadas called locusts. It's 2 different things. I've heard them called katydid's, but I'm pretty sure those are different. cicada's come out every several years in a cycle. katydids are out every summer in the trees making loud noises.


I'm pretty sure what you think are cicada's aren't actually cicadas
We have cicada's every year since there are so many different broods and life cycles. Last year (maybe 2 years ago) we had the ones that sound like water running through pipes off in the distance; really an alien sound.

My mother is from West Alabama and my father from the Florida panhandle and they both called cicadas "locusts" and pointed them out to me. I know the difference between a katydid and a locust...er...cicada.