Tuesday, December 27, 2005

A couple of new words...

  • fritta tenda - fritter tender - the turner used in frying or to "tend the fritters on the stove"
  • yow uns - children or "young ones"

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Maine is the 8th healthiest state

"America's Health Rankings" from United Health Foundation has released their classifications of the health of each state. It was nice to see Maine at #8 as well as Connecticut and Massachusetts at #7 and 9 respectively. Maine improved across the board except in the "Prevalence of Obesity" category where it increased from 19.9% to 23.3% of the population between 2004 and 2005. Ouch.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

New words/definitions

Found all of these on http://www.laughmaine.com/. A great site! LaughMaine.com's administrators are from Bethel, Maine.

They will be added to the glossary soon!

  • Interred - 1.) In - turd 2.) A result of doing something that could be perceived as dangerous or risky or just plain stupid. 3.) Fred was planning a practical joke on his wife in the outhouse and he slipped and fell down the hole. He was "interred" up to his ears.
  • Affidavit - 1.) Afa Day Vit 2.) A Maine expression used to describe a serious event that is happening or will in the near future. 3.) "I jus saw Mabel a few minutes ago n she wuz madder in hell at her husband. I think she got the shotgun and she's going 'affidavit' with it."
  • Amused - 1.) Uh muzed 2.) What Maine men say when they leave the house and head out fishin with the boys. 3.) "Man, you take that kinda talk from your ole lady?" "Yeah, 'amused' to it!"
  • Annex - 1.) An Nex 2.) Usually found beginning the second part of a compound sentence. Used sometimes when it shouldn't be that gets your buddy into trouble like 3.) "Oh, yeah, Mabel! You don't gotta worry none about ole Fred. Last night at the bar he was sitting right next to me 'annex' to him on the other side was Suzy May."
  • Appear - 1.) Up Peeya 2.) a descriptive word used many times by Fred when he was in hot water. 3.) Bob went out to the barn to find Fred. When he walked in he heard, "Psssst! I'm 'appear' hiding from Mabel."
  • Ardor - 1.) Ahh Dowah 2.) A possessive compound word use with many other simple nouns to express possession 3.) "Hey, Ma! Did you see the front of that new house back theyah? They got a dowah looks just like 'ardor'!" Other examples would be: "Arson"
  • Summons - 1.) Summ unz 2. Alert to danger. When a sentence begins with this word, run like hell as fast as you can. 3.) "'Summons' gonna get their ars handed to em if I can't find that last can of Budweiser!"
  • Gesture - 1.) Jest yure 2.) An expression of anticipation. 3.) "'Gesture' wait and see what Santa brings you for Christmas!"
  • Asunder - 1.) Ah sundah 2.) A descriptive phrase of action. Could be mistaken for a verb of male domination. 3.) "Well, I told ya a hunnerd times! Get yer 'asunder' the damned blankets and ya won't be so cold!"
  • Mayonnaise - 1). mannayz 2). a word used at the beginning of most Mainah's statements. 3). "mannayz a lot of mosquitoes this year"!
  • European - 1). yer a peein 2). a phrase that describes an action that generally takes place when you're out with the boys and you stop beside the road. 3). "Would ya mind turnin the other way. Yerapeein on my boots."
  • Fascinate - 1.) fas in ate 2.) compound word used to describe something that needs to be done or attempted. 3.) "Oh, man! I ate way too many of them there Maine lobstahs. I musta gained twenty pounds. I got ten buttons on my shirt and I can only 'Fascinate'"
  • Witchadija - 1.) wich a didja 2.) a form of a prepositional phrase derived from the ancient language of the northern Canadians mixed with the strong Franco American accent. 3.) While out hunting is the northern woods of Maine, Fernand and his son Michel discovered that neither one of them had any ammunition for their guns. Fernand said, "You didn't bringed the box of ammo "witchadija"!
  • Initiate - 1.) a nish ee ate 2.) this is a word that is used in transitioning between to parts of a compound sentence. 3.) I went to Spinney's Restaurant the other night for some fried clams and I couldn't help noticing this very fat woman sitting across the way at another table. First they brought her a big salad and she ate that all up "initiate" a bowl of soup, "initiate" a ....... and from here we go to the next word.
  • Ascot - 1.) ass cot 2.) a word used to describe the result of a repetitious action. 3.) Watching this woman eat all that food at Spinney's Restaurant, it didn't take me long to figure out why her "ascot" so damned big.
  • Raisin Bread - 1.) raze in bred 2.) a term or short sentence used in several small out-of-the-way towns in remote Maine 3.) "Don't make fun of him! He can't help it! Don't you know that "Ray's inbred"?
  • Sunzabitches - 1.) Sunz ah bitchiz 2.) A word used to describe a group or gathering. 3.) "Every time I go into the Wal Mart down in Norway, them "sunzabitches" ain't never got what I want!"
  • Masking - 1.) Mass kin 2.) Disguised as a single word, it really is a short statement made by notoriously loud-mouthed people. They generally leave the "g" off the ending. 3.) Maskin' ya whayad the hell did ja go last night. Maskin' ya for the last time and I ain't askin agin.
  • Ashcan - 1.) Ash Kan 2.) A term used by a Maine husband when his wife comes home from Weight Watchers. 3.) If you don't go to that there Weight Watchers more than you are, I don't think your ashcan fit in them pants no more.
  • Askew - 1.) As Ku 2.) Used most often as part of a threat in a heated argument between two married Mainers. 3.) (Said very loudly) I ain't gonna askew again!!
  • Aspect - 1.) Ah Spekt 2.) The start to a quizzical or pondering statement. Used when a Mainer is about to say something deep. 3.) Aspect you ain't gonna help me with gittin in some mowah fiyah wood ah ya?
  • Asperse - 1.) As Purz 2.) A noun used to describe a sack or a carrying bag worn many times by outta staydahs. 3.) Them outta staydahs wear them pocket books strapped around theya waists and when they turn em around ta the back, it's an asperse.
  • Aspire - 1.) A Spiya 2.) A decorative onnamant that goes on a bahn in Maine. 3.) Mabel, that thing on top of the bahn cupola is called aspire.
  • Associate - 1.) A So She Ate 2.) Used to describe an act by an overly hefty woman bellied up to a table in Captain Newick's restaurant eating everything on the menu. 3.) I sat and watched in disbelief as the woman downed all the food on her table. Associate even more than I thought was possible.
  • Asthma - 1.) Azz Ma 2.) the beginning part of a prepositional phrase used by most old Mainers when they either have nothing of interest to talk about or they have forgotten they have told you the same story 6 times already. 3.) Asthma pappy used to say, he was happier than a dead pig laying in the sunshine.
  • "THE YANKEE NOD" - a means of saying hello without actually speaking. Usually done while driving a pick-up, tractor or skidder. The yankee nod is when the person tips their head up and back and at the same time, and this is critically important, they open their mouth real wide.
  • "THE ONE-FINGER WAVE" - Not to be confused with "Givin um tha fingah". No, the one-finger wave is done the vast majority of the time while driving a pick-up truck. Place both or one hand if your driving on pavement, on the steering wheel. The hand or hands need to be at the top of the steering wheel and all four fingers wrapped tightly around the wheel. When you meet an oncoming vehicle of someone you might know, the index (pointy) finger shoots straight up in the air. That's a one-finger wave. The old timers have variations of that. Sometimes even when driving on dirt roads, they only use one hand while driving and they do the one-finger wave at the same time. A real Mainer can slide one or both hands up the wheel while the oncoming car approaches and prepare for the one-finger wave. And in my travels I have seen and this is not recommended to try at home, a Mainer actually raise one arm up to about 90 degrees WITHOUT grasping the wheel and conducting a one-finger wave. AMAZING!
  • "THE WOODSMAN'S DIP" - This is not a dance or something you stick in your mouth. The woodsman's dip is a quick and more importantly an effortless "hello" (again, not spoken). While approaching another person, quickly dip your chin toward your chest bringing the rest of your head with it of course. Eye contact is not necessary and not highly recommended either. Many times this gesture is followed by a quick glance away from the approaching individual. This way you will be sure to avoid any unnecessary verbal exchange. Using this means of "cummunicadin" while in a pick-up truck is really a waste of time because it is so subtle it won't be seen by the oncoming person and that may lead them to assume you are stuck up or something. Maybe you been around them flatlanders too long or something. FOR THE EXPERT: While driving you can use the Woodsman's Dip and the Yankee Nod in combination but it has to be done right. The Woodsman's Dip comes first followed immediately by the Yankee Nod! In case you are wondering, there are no recorded incidences of anyone using a Yankee Nod, a One-finger Wave and a Woodsman's Dip in combination - well at least that lived!
  • AYUH! - Simply means yes! Not to be confused with "Yarrr". Sometimes it is a generational thing. The younger generation finds it a bit cooler to say "Yarrr" instead of "Ayuh".
  • HOT NUFF FAW YA? - That is a question that is casually asked by Mainers when they meet someone that they know ain't a flatlander. Usually posed to an acquaintance. When the asker poses the question, which by the way is "Is it hot enough for you?" They really are not seeking an answer and sometimes not even a response - although most times a low grunt will be okay. Obviously this question is asked only during the summer month (notice month is not plural) when the temperature reaches 80 degrees. Mainers notoriously despise the warmth - well the cold too and the mud season, and the black flies. Fall ain't too bad except the damned leaf-peepers!
  • CHUPP TA? - Which means: "What are you up to or what are you doing?" Very much like "hot nuff faw ya?" this does not require a response. It's just another way of saying hello.
  • Blinkkah - This one really confuses many Outta Staydahs. You see, those from away, although they never use them themselves refer to this as a "turn signal" or sometimes a "directional light". In Maine it's called a "Blinkkah" (blinker for the illiterate). With the strong influence of the French Canadians in Maine, a blinkkah is a difficult concept to understand. Once a man in a IGA parking lot was having some difficulty with his and asked a passer-by if he could tell him if his blinkkah was working. In a very thick French accent the man replied, "Ayuh, nope, ayuh, nope, ayuh, nope......."

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

The Glossary now has a home!

I finally bought a domain name for the Mainah Glossary - it only took 10 years! Please bookmark:


More to come!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Current book

I generally read about 2-3 books at a time, and I usually use my "fun" books as an excuse for not reading my MBA school books. Not a good habit.

One of the books I'm currently reading is The Lobster Chronicles by Linda Greenlaw. I generally do not read books about Maine (why read about where you grew up?) but this one caught my eye because 1) it was already sitting on our bookshelf, 2) it is about Isle au Haut and 3) it is about lobsters (in a way). I think everyone is fascinated by island life. Many people dream about living on an island away from it all, but, of course, very few of us will ever get the chance. This is probably a blessing in disguise as island life is not the easiest way of life, especially in Maine winters.

That is why I am really enjoying The Lobster Chronicles. It gives you a glimpse of island life from the perspective of a woman who grew up on the island, left to be an off-shore fisherman, and came home. For those of you not familiar with New England books and movies, Linda Greenlaw and her boat were portrayed in the The Perfect Storm and has written two other books about her experiences as a fisherman. The Perfect Storm is another great book that I have read and recommend by Sebastian Junger.

In addition to islands, I have always been fascinated by lobsters. My grandfather owned a fish market in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts and I remembering playing with the lobsters when I was a child as if they were my pets.

And the final reason I was interested in the book was because I have received submissions from an Isle au Haut resident. His website also gives a great glimpse of island life and has even more lobster information. So, if you are one of the many who dream of living on an island or are fascinated by lobsters, read Linda Greenlaw's book. It is a quick read but very enjoyable and she does use quite a few Mainah words. (:

Friday, October 14, 2005


is a rainy Friday night with a brand new Blog which I just told all my Mainah friends about...

So, I decided it was time to update the The Wicked Good Guide to Mainah English.

Lots of updates - new jokes, fixed links, and all of the suggestions that I had received since March (yes, March). Seven months is not the longest period of time I have gone without updating. I think I once had suggestions that were over a year old and when I emailed some of the submitters to thank them, their email no longer worked.

At least I now have a spot where I can quickly upload new suggestions until the next rainy Friday night...

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

"Recent" suggestions

The most recent suggestions have been:

  • Taxationland, pretty obvious, right up there with Taxachusetts [Norma, Waldoboro, Native Mainah]

All from Alice (Borgen) Carleton, Old Town:

  • Spleeny-Jeannie....means cranky (wonder if it comes from the word: spleen--like a spleen actin' up or sumthin!)
  • Robin showah: Means a snowstorm in spring (Like when you shouldn't be gettin' any mowah snow!)
  • Dahkah than the inside of a pocket: No explanation needed!

All from Glenn Harmon, Portland:

  • By-the-Jesus (I'm not kidding around now)
  • By Godfrey (affirmative in the extreme)
  • Long Way Round Robin Hood's Barn (not taking the shortest route)
  • Slower Than Molasses Going Uphill in January (to take one's time)
  • Hotter than Living Haying time (wicked hot)
  • No More Sense than Carter's Got Liver Pills (not too clever)

All from Angie Hafford, Allagash:

  • Well there"- Moosetowner's way of saying "Well, ain't you ever full of sh*t!"
  • "Chop-chop!"- Moosetowner's way of saying "Hurry Up!" or "Quick!"
  • Fellers- (Moosetown lingo) A group of people.
  • Bogan (Bow-Gan)- (Moosetown lingo) A little pond like area with nasty water
  • Dog Days- (Moosetown lingo)Time in the fall when the waters are low and pretty dirty.
  • Jeslus (Gees-Luss)- (Moosetown lingo) "Them jeslus fellers!"
  • Anti-Christ- (Moosetown lingo) "Well you wouldn't look at that jeslus anti christ!"
  • G'way- Moosetowners way of saying "Go Away!"
  • Yas Now- (Moosetown lingo) Another way of saying "Well there!" Usually said after someone tells a tall tale or something that makes no sense.
  • Peeked (Peak-Ed) - (Moosetown lingo) Sharp, to a point, peeked!! Usually used as "the peeked part" or describing someone to have a peeked face.
  • Frogs- Nickname for the St. Francis and Fort Kenter's
  • Blueberries- Nickname for the St. Johner's
  • Cheesetown- AKA: Van Buren
  • Swampdonkey- Moose

History of the Mainah Glossary

I honestly do not remember when I first started the Mainah Glossary, but the Internet Archive Wayback Machine has one of my original glossary sites from 1996 with about 60 words. As of today, there are over 300 words in the Mainah Glossary.

And, yes, I still use mid-90s html to keep it going - no frames, flash, java, etc. It keeps it easy to copy, email, and print and I still get visitors suggesting new words each month. Content is better than style, if you ask me.

What I have been bad at is keeping it updated. I get suggestions but I don't find the 20 minutes to update the glossary. This site isn't going to replace the glossary (and I do hope to have my own domain soon!), but it will let anyone who visits here to see what new words have been suggested and hopefully comment on them. Stories make the suggestions all the better.

Next up - "recent" suggestions that I haven't added (yet).