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How to speak like a Chicagoan

Posted by Eric Wilbur, Boston.com Staff  June 14, 2013 12:07 PM

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By Mark Jacob, Chicago Tribune staff

Heading to Chicago for the Stanley Cup finals between the Boston Bruins and Blackhawks, but are worried about fitting in? The Chicago Tribune’s Mark Jacob checks in with some unique phrases and terms so that Bostonians can sound like a local.

Here are some tips on how to talk Chicago.

First off, it's Chi-CAW-go, not Chi-CAA-go. Nationwide, you hear that second pronunciation more than the first. But among longtime Chicagoans, you hear the first much more often.

Some other words and phrases:

Over by dere -- That's Chicagoan for "there," as in "I parked the car over by dere."

Ending sentences with "with" -- When you're going to the store, someone might ask you, "Can I go with?"

Djeet -- When Chicagoans want to know whether someone is hungry, they ask "Djeet?" - as in "Did you eat?"

Sammich or sanguich - known in most of the U.S. as a sandwich.

The Jewels -- The Jewel supermarket chain gets an unofficial "S" on it, plus "the" in front.

Goethe Street -- This is a street on the North Side of Chicago. It's not pronounced "GEH-tah." It's "GO-thee." (And while we're at it, forget the H in

Throop Street - it's pronounced "Troop.") Dibs -- The custom of shoveling snow out of a parking spot and then putting old folding chairs or other items in the spot to reserve it.

Viagra Triangle -- Nickname for a Near North Side area of bars where wealthy older men meet younger women.

Chumbolone -- Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass has popularized the word "chumbolone" (chum-ba-LOAN), meaning a fool who is easily taken advantage of. Kass uses this term to explain what Illinois politicians think of him and other taxpayers.

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