The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Going Dutch

June 4, 2014

Do You Do The Dip? - Part 1

— GROWING UP IN PENNSYLVANIA you hear words that you assume are being spoken all around the country. To learn otherwise is a bit of a jolt. A popular e-mail making the rounds attributes a very commonplace word to Pennsylvanians: pocketbook, as in a lady’s purse.  Since I’ve been surrounded by ladies and their pocketbooks all my life, and since I now lug around one of my own, I find this hard to believe.

Doesn’t everybody call it a pocketbook? I implore our out-of-state readers to back me up on this one. Women of Connecticut, Mississippi, North Dakota, Arizona, Hawaii, and all points in between, please tell me you, too, carry your wallet, tissues, lipstick, etc., in a pocketbook.

Another word in the Pennsylvania e-mail: hoagie. I laughed at that, thinking, Boy, people are really stretching it here. Everybody says hoagie! Subs, heroes, cosmos, grinders - they’re all newer words for the good old-fashioned hoagie. Or so I thought. But when I looked it up in Webster’s Dictionary, there it was, plain as day: hoagie, originated in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Astonishing! Who would have thought!

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Sprecken sie Pennsylvaniaish?