See the Top Slang Term from Every U.S. State

"J'eet!" "Dink!" "Ope!" Yes, our nation's vernacular is quite diverse.

See the Top Slang Term from Every U.S. State

It’s no secret that Americans pride themselves on the unique culture of their home states. But just how much of that individuality boils down to differences in dialect? A new survey from the gaming company PlayNJ just might have the answer.

According to the survey, 41 percent of Americans claim that their state has specific words or slang that people from outside their state just wouldn’t understand. In fact, 72 percent of natives from one particular state (Louisiana) felt that their state’s language was often misunderstood by other Americans. (To be fair, with popular foods named “gumbo” and “jambalaya,” that’s a bit reasonable.) According to them, here are the top slang words for every state. And for more state-centric trivia, don’t miss The Strangest Law in Every State.

pointing to watch, top slang words in every state

Alabama: “Hot minute”

Despite what you might believe, this term actually has nothing to do with temperature. It’s used describing a “longish” amount of time. For more fun facts specific to each state, check out The One Thing People in Every State Can’t Live Without.

aiport, top slang words in every state

Alaska: “Cheechako”

This outlandish word is meant to make you feel like you have no idea what’s going on. Alaskans use it to describe the newbies to their state who know nothing about living in “The Last Frontier.”

snowbird, top slang words in every state

Arizona: “Snowbird”

This is the affectionate term Arizonans use to refer to their state’s wide-eyed visitors from the colder regions “up north.”

annoyed couple, top slang words in every state

Arkansas: “Roofer”

Trust us, you don’t want someone to call you this. It’s apparently reserved for people who display less-than-keen tendencies. (So: idiots.)

woman excited, top slang words in every state

California: “Bomb”

Bomb: something that’s really, really cool.

skiing, top slang words in every state

Colorado: “Gaper”

New to the slopes? This is what Coloradans call first-time skiers.

pizza, top slang words in every state

Connecticut: “Apizza”

Like regular pizza, but better. The New Haven slang for everyone’s favorite Friday night take-out.

friends laughing, top slang words in every state

Delaware: “Baggin’ up”

An expression for when someone’s joke causes you to get a stitch in your side from laughing so hard.

woman spraying bug spray on son, top slang words in every state

Florida: “No-see-ums”

You know tiny, annoying bugs that you swat at miserably but can never seem to lay eyes on? That’s a no-see-um.

kids playing tag, top slang words in every state

Georgia: “Chitlans”

No, this is not a peculiar type of Southern cuisine. “Chitlans” refer to your children.

Shark in ocean, top slang words in every state

Hawaii: “Shark bait”

All you SPF 70-users, this one goes out to you. “Shark bait” is what Hawaiians call tourists who are so pale that they just might attract the notice of area sharks when they brave the waves.

potatoes, top slang words in every state

Idaho: “Potato drop”

The New Year ball drop, Idaho style. (Apparently involving an actual potato.)

lake shore drive, top slang words in every state

Illinois: “LSD”

Nope, not what you’re thinking. This is Illinois shorthand for a stretch of road—Lake Shore Drive, to be precise.

Indianapolis, top slang words in every state

Indiana: “Hoosier”

Someone who lives, breathes, and adores all things Indiana.

Tiara, top slang words in every state

Iowa: “Pork queen”

A coveted title bestowed upon the winner of a state beauty pageant.

drunk man, top slang words in every state

Kansas: “Get loaded”

The turn of phrase for when you visit your local bar and have a few too many.

hot brown, top slang words in every state

Kentucky: “Hot brown”

An open-faced sandwich served piping hot and smothered in Mornay sauce, first created and served in a Louisville hotel circa 1920. (Mmm, scrumptious.)

mardi gras beads, top slang words in every state

Louisiana: “Pass a good time”

To partake in a good time. Mardi Gras, anyone?

man encouraging coworker, top slang words in every state

Maine: “Get ‘er dun”

Described as a “redneck phrase” of encouragement, meant to inspire someone to go out and complete a task. And for more from our most eastern state, check out where you should visit based on the 50 Destinations So Magical You Won’t Believe They’re in the U.S.

pointing to a map in a car, top slang words in every state

Maryland: “Bop”

Farther than a hop, skip, and a jump. Marylanders use this word to describe a distance longer than what they can comfortably travel.

Red bricks, top slang words in every state

Massachusetts: “It’s brick”

What you say if it’s very cold.

warren MI, top slang words in every state

Michigan: “Yooper”

“Yooper” is what Michiganers call their fellow citizens who hail from the uppermost peninsula of the Great Lakes State.

thumbs up, top slang words in every state

Minnesota: “You betcha”

A much more fun way to say that you agree with someone’s statement.

young man talking to old man, top slang words in every state

Mississippi: “Fixin'”

No, this word has nothing to do with repairing a leaky faucet. Instead, it’s the standard substitution for the word “about,” as in “I’m about to do something.” Example: “I’m fixin’ to cook dinner.”

woman arms crossed, top slang words in every state

Missouri: “Put out”

Vernacular reserved for when you’re angry or annoyed with a situation.

cowboy on horse, top slang words in every state

Montana: “Cowboy up!”

No spurs or lassos involved here. This phrase simply means to pull yourself together and handle the situation in an adult manner.

red beer, top slang words in every state

Nebraska: “Red beer”

A special concoction of beer brewed with tomato juice. For extra pizazz, Nebraskans sometimes add a splash of hot sauce. And to learn about the best brews in each of the 50 states, see The Best Craft Beer In Every U.S. State.

man feeding pigeons, top slang words in every state

Nevada: “Pigeon”

No, not the bird. In true Las Vegas fashion, this describes a desperate attempt to throw money at one’s losses, hoping to turn them into a win by some stroke of fortune. If you want to boost your winnings, though, learn The Easiest Way to Double Your Money in Vegas.

Jeans fly, top slang words in every state

New Hampshire: “XYZ”

Not-so-discreet instructions to double-check that your fly is zipped. (Translation: eXamine Your Zipper).

jersey shore, top slang words in every state

New Jersey: “Benny”

A quick, somewhat derogatory way to refer to all Bayonne, Elizabeth, Newark, and New York residents who invade the Jersey Shore during the summer months.

chile sauce, top slang words in every state

New Mexico: “Christmas”

No string lights or jolly, bearded old men associated with this word. Instead, “Christmas” describes what kind of chili you want with your meal—not just red chili or green chili, but both!

serious conversation, top slang words in every state

New York: “Deada**”

A word meant to emphasize that you’re being completely serious.

Jar of Coins, top slang words in every state

North Carolina: “Dime”

“Dime” is a descriptor for a very attractive person.

elderly man surprised by newspaper, top slang words in every state

North Dakota: “Uff da!”

A catchy exclamation of puzzlement or concern.

point at someone, top slang words in every state

Ohio: “Hollin'”

An unpleasant word to describe a situation where you unflinchingly insult someone to his or her face.

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Oklahoma: “J’eet”

A much quicker way to determine if someone has already eaten a meal. Translation: “Did you eat?” And for more of our state-related compilations, don’t miss The Best Joke Written About Every U.S. State.

Person with Money, top slang words in every state

Oregon: “Spendy”

A descriptor for expensive, high-value items.

woman not hungry, top slang words in every state

Pennsylvania: “Snoopy”

No, not the Charlie Brown canine. This is what Pennsylvanians call those people who push the many foods they don’t like around and around in circles until it’s scattered across their plate; in other words, a picky eater.

milkshake, top slang words in every state

Rhode Island: “Awful awful”

The opposite of awful, actually. The name of a delectable milkshake native to “The Ocean State.” (To make things painfully clear: milkshakes are the furthest thing from awful.)

father and son playing catch, top slang words in every state

South Carolina: “Chunk”

Slang meaning “to throw or toss an item.” Example: “Let me chunk this football to you.”

confused woman, top slang words in every state

South Dakota: “Kattywampus”

A far more complicated way to describe something located in a diagonal direction. Can also mean when someone is very discombobulated.

southern dinner, top slang words in every state

Tennessee: “Meat and three”

A good old-fashioned Southern dinner, constituting a meat complemented by three side dishes.

argument, top slang words in every state

Texas: “Kicker”

The phrase for the final and most persuasive reasoning in an argument, packed with a Texas-sized punch.

stop pocket dialing

Utah: “Biffed”

The word to describe when you make a completely embarrassing spectacle of yourself.

couple fighting mean man

Vermont: “Dink”

A multi-use word to characterize someone who is a little slower—or just plain mean.

Loch Lomond Scotland

Virginia: “Yonder”

A whimsical expression to describe a distance rather than a location. Example: “See that mountain peak? It’s just over yonder.”


Washington: “Pre-Funk”

You might call it the pre-game, or pre-party, but Washingtonians shorten “pre-function” to “pre-funk” to refer to the drinking that occurs before attending another gathering.

suitcase, money, invest, billionaires

West Virginia: “Peck”

A West Virginian word to illustrate a substantial amount.

50s slang no one uses

Wisconsin: “Ope”

A term that’s more noise than word and can be interjected without warning into any sentence.

dressing well in your 30s

Wyoming: “Greenie”

What Wyoming natives dub their visitors from Colorado, in tribute to their neighboring state’s green-colored license plates. And for more fun facts about everyday speech and the intricacies it contains, don’t miss the 40 Everyday Slang Words That Were Invented Online.

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