Speech, New Orleans
Local terms that may be unfamiliar to those from outside the area:
- Neutral Ground
The central median of a road or highway. There's an interesting history behind how this was derived, going back the 17th century.
Community Coffee House. This is a small chain of coffee shops run by the Louisiana coffee company. If a New Orleanian refers to the "CC's on the corner," they're not talking about the bad pizza buffet chain.
They've now been closed for years, but New Orleanians - and Louisianans in general - often still refer to any sort of corner drugstore, such as Walgreens, CVS or Rite Aid, as "K&B". At one time, virtually all drugstores on New Orleans street corners were K&B locations.
Women may be offended by being called this by men in the modern age, but this is a Louisiana thing, and it is not at all meant to be derogatory. It's more a friendly term for a man to use toward a women.
In a New Orleans accent, "Saint" is often pronounced with a sharper "a" as in "ant". This goes for any "Saint" name, such as Saint Charles Avenue and Saint Louis Cathedral, in addition to the now-popular football team.
I've been surprised how much this throws people off, but maybe because I've heard it all my life: chop-eh-TOO-lus
- "Go Cup"
A plastic or styrofoam cup a bar gives you so that you can take your drink on the street, "to go".
What Louisiana officially calls its counties. Orleans Parish (contiguous with the City of New Orleans) and Jefferson Parish are the ones most talked about in New Orleans. Saint Tammany (North Shore) will also often be referred to.
- West Bank
The area on the west side of the Mississippi River, directly south of the City of New Orleans, but including the Algiers district, which itself is regarded as more its own city (historically, it was) than a part of New Orleans.
- North Shore
The land on the north shore of Lake Ponchatrain. Includes Mandeville, Slidell and sometimes even Hammond.
- South Shore
The land on the south shore of Lake Ponchatrain. Normally used in conjunction with "North Shore" to offer counterpoint.
- GNO Bridge/"CCC"
The Business US 90 bridge over the Mississippi River near Downtown New Orleans. Officially referred to as the "Crescent City Connection" and formerly named the Greater New Orleans Bridge.
- "The Huey P"
The US 90, Huey P. Long Bridge over the Mississippi River.
- "The High-Rise Bridge"
The I-10 bridge over the Industrial Canal, connecting Gentilly and the rest of New Orleans to New Orleans East.