I just finished listening to the new Papillion CD I gave my son for his birthday. He sings about, “the animals axing for you, even inquiring about you.” I have been known to correct children when they say ain’t or speak poor English (the teacher in me). Recently, I caught myself correcting some neighborhood kids when they said “axed.” This is not a racial vernacular – it is a local New Orlean’s-speak, a cultural dialect that should be embraced. However, outside out of this state, it may appear to the person ignorant of the local cutlure as if the person speaking (the local) is ignorant (capiche?). Maybe we need to keep all the people axing questions right here in their home town, their home state and only allow people in who can learn to “axe” questions!
“Axing” has nothing to do with color, age or educational background, it is something embedded in the culture and I love it! I stumbled upon the Gumbo Pages, my newest bookmark on Delicious today. Looks like the Urban Dictionary missed the correct definitiion of “axed.” Someone please correct them – I’m too lazy!
Hey, I grew up in a Bahstan suburb and need a full-time interpreter when I now visit the area. I had to ask my grandfather to repeat himself at least 3 times when he was talking about a guy wearing “shahts.” Shahts=shorts! BTW – sumthin is also a Boston-speak. When hubby and I have a few beers, you might catch us slip into our hometown Bahstan-speak from time to time!
Axe=ask – plain and simple.
(c/p @ NOLA.com)
4 Replies to “Can I axe you sumthin?”
This is not just a New Orleans thing. I lived in inner city Philadelphia and it was rampant there. It drove me batty. It doesn’t seem as bad here, particularly when you mix it with the whole cajun thing. But in Philly? I had to vote for ignorant and/or lazy.
when I moved here, I asked a few natives if they were from NYC/Bronx/Long Island because that is what the accent sounded like to me.
Ohio Girl- there are NY accents alive and well here. It seems to be from the ports.
Krista – any inner city has people who are uneducated who say axed – but here it has nothing to do with that at all.
Actually, it’s called the Yat accent, which is much like a Brooklyn accent because you have the same cultural mix as Brooklyn (Italian, German, Catholic Irish, black). These folks originally settled in the Ninth Ward before moving out to the ‘burbs across the lake.
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