Saturday, August 30, 2008

Where'd you go to high school?

Nothing makes me feel more like an outsider than being asked "Where did you go to high school?" For I didn't go to high school in STL. It's even a running joke to natives. They know that the question is so overused in STL. But they use it anyway. They'll preface the question by saying, "OK, the big question..." or "I know this is such a St. Louis thing, but..."

High School Schmigh School! How about college? Asking about high school only means you can't leave that joyous time in your life. Get over it. Move beyond high school. How about this? Before you ask that question, try asking if the person is even from St. Louis. You might have the answer you're looking for w/o asking the "big question".

Knowing what someone's high school alma mater is is trying to figure out if you'll accept them or not. It's not a way of bonding. Odds are, if you didn't know them and they went to the same high school at the same time, you didn't want to know them in the first place.

St. Louis is very territorial for this reason. It's hard to break into it if you know no one. I moved here from the Cincinnati area. I knew no one. Especially in the business field I was previously working within in Cincinnati. I had the hardest time gaining acceptance as an outsider. Always the question. I feel like I disappoint when they come to find out I didn't school in STL. I also feel like they didn't read my resume since it clarifies that point as plain as day.

St. Louis, for many reasons, is very territorial; very incestual.


It's "Washington"; not "Warshington". Please don't insert "ar" into what should be "aw". This also applies to one of St. Louis' highways; highway 44. Many STLians call it "Farty-Far".

I guess this blog can be used as a decoder ring of sorts when travelling to St. Louis from parts beyond.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Picking apart the dialect

I would like to first say that this is not meant to be a hateful blog. I am a non-native St. Louisan. I moved here back in late 2001. From day one, I noticed some strange dialect coming from some of the people hailing from St. Louis. My wife, a native herself, did not have the dialect. But, then again, I met her while she was living in Columbus, Ohio. I believe that STLans that have never lived outside of Missouri tend to have this speak more so than others.

More to come about this native dialect, including examples. I'd like to hear your comments.