10 Slang Terms Mainers Use That Outta Statahs Don’t Understand
Abby Norman, who was a blogger for the Bangor Daily News, came up with a list of words only Mainers use and called it 'The Outta Statah's Guide to Maine Slang.' It's a great list and a handy guide for that friend of yours 'from away.' Here are some of my favorites on her list and a few that I heard as a kid that I'd like to add.
Abby came up with a list of over 60 slang terms Mainers use. Here are the five I remember most as a kid.
"Aw look at that little guy. Ain't he cunnin'?" To me this always sounded dirty when all it really meant was cute. Really old people used this and by 'really old,' I mean really old to a 10-year-old.
2. DOWN CELLAH
Mainers don't have basements. We have cellahs. Ours growing up didn't look like a basement. It looked like a cellar. I can't really explain it well without showing you the difference, but imagine what a fallout shelter might look like. That was our cellah.
3. HUM DINGAH
I have no idea where this even came from. Baseball maybe? Who knows? If something was really good it was a hum dingah. "Wow that snake you just found in the grass sure is a hum dingah!"
I call it dinner now, but when I was a kid we called it suppah. "What do you kids want for suppah? Tacos?" We'd answer "Ayuh."
This was where you never wanted your baseball to go. We used it as kids to describe any type of foliage or plant growth that could hurt you when you went into it go after your ball. If it had thorns or those prickly little balls that would stick to your clothes or get stuck in your hair it was the puckabrush.
Now to add to Abby's list, here are five other slang terms I remember as a kid:
1. AHH VAH
If you just did something you're not supposed to, some kid with you was more than likely to exclaim "Ahh vah!" When I threw rocks at the moving train to hear them clank off the side of boxcars I would sometimes get an "Ahh vah!"
This may not be Maine slang, but I remember my grandmother always referring to the couch as the divan. "Jeffrey, go grab that blanket off the divan." The first time I heard that I had no idea what to do. We had a couch.
The correct term is sledding, but not for us. We'd climb up the big hill behind our house to go sliding and coincidentally there was a sled factory right across the street that made sleds we could go sliding on. Confused? I'm not.
The old department store that seemed to be in every town in Maine until one day they were all gone. When you needed to go shopping you didn't go to Ames. You went to Ameses. We Mainers love putting s and r where they don't belong and dropping them where they do.
A heavy vehicle used in a logging operation for pulling cut trees out of a forest. Growing up in the 70's and 80's skiddah tires were highly sought after. If you saw a guy with more than four on his lawn, you knew he hit the mother lode. Actually to be honest, skiddah tires are still a hot item today.
You can check out Abby Norman's Outta Statah's Guide to Maine Slang and leave any that you have heard in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter.