15 Words That Mean Something Totally Different to Virginians. - writing in red lipstick.

15 Words That Mean Something Totally Different to Virginians.

A few days ago I came across a list of words that supposedly meant certain things to Virginia natives, but most of them were WAY off or just completely and totally wrong altogether. So I decided to make my own list. Now, I'm sure lot of these are true to quite a few states other than Virginia, but The Old Dominion is the place I know best, and these seemed to fit. Let me know what you think :)


1. The DMV
What it means everywhere else: The Department of Motor Vehicles, ie. Hell on Earth.

What it means in Virginia: The DC Metro Area. Washington DC, Maryland, and Virginia.


2. Getting Crabs
What it means everywhere else: Discovering an unpleasant itchy sensation.

What it means in Virginia: The traditional end-of-summer feast including all the hard and soft shell crabs you can eat. Usually accompanied by friends, family, and a few pitchers of beer. Don't forget the Old Bay or the hush puppies!


3. Government Workers
What it means everywhere else: The reason for the world's problems.

What it means in Virginia: Half of the people you know. They all work in the State Department, Secret Service, IRS or CIA.


4. The River
What it means everywhere else: A body of water that flows toward the ocean.

What it means in Virginia: A body of water no more than 30 miles of your location. Endless summer fun. Someone or many people you know owns a boat, kayak, inner tubes, or all three.


5. NOVA
What it means everywhere else: A super nova? The vintage Chevrolet car?

What it means in Virginia: Northern Virginia, right next to Washington DC. It's basically it's own state, it's that different. Also an acronym for Northern Virginia Community College.


6. Rednecks
What it means everywhere else: Moonshine swiggin, rifle shootin Hillbillies.

What it means in Virginia: Moonshine swiggin', rifle shootin' Hillbillies that know how to have a good time. Though not always seen as a favorable word, many people consider themselves rednecks and are proud of that fact.


7. Traffic
What it means everywhere else: An annoying occurance, cars stuck on the highway for a while.

What it means in Virginia: The way people from NOVA spend most of their lives, especially the hours between 3 and 7pm each day.


8. Metro
What it means everywhere else: A subway system.

What it means in Virginia: The only way to avoid DC traffic.


9. Hiking
What it means everywhere else: Climbing a mountain.

What it means in Virginia: The quintessential fall recreational activity. Likely in the Blue Ridge Mountains or at Great Falls.


10. Staunton and Norfolk
What everyone says: Staunton and Norfolk

What Virginians say: STAN-ton and Nor-F*CK


11. U.S. History
What it means everywhere else: The history of how the United States came to be. Patriots, Red Coats, The Revolutionary War, The Colonies.

What it means in Virginia: Virginia History.


12. Peanuts
What it means everywhere else: Your standard nut. A suitable snack.

What it means in Virginia: An entire month of your 3rd grade classwork. You likely made peanut butter, memorized George Washington Carver's life history, and learned everything there is to know about this particular Virginia cash crop. Same with Tobacco.


13. College
What it means everywhere else: The next logical step after high school.

What it means in Virginia: One of the most polarizing choices you may make in your life. So many good schools in the state, and they're all vicious rivals, especially UVA and VT. Even if you don't attend either of the two, you know exactly which one you're rooting for.


14. Central Park
What it means everywhere else: The park in the middle of New York City.

What it means in Virginia: The huge shopping district in Fredricksburg. You've probably gotten stuck in traffic there or been to Funland maybe 12 to 50 times.


15. NASCAR
What it means everywhere else: A pointless sport that nobody watches.

What it means in Virginia: Some things are universal. Does ANYONE watch NASCAR?


What words mean different things where you're from?
Do these words mean anything different to you?

5 comments

  1. That's interesting, I grew up in NoVA (different from your NOVA which I still use to refer to the community college) and I feel like some of these are more Maryland or DMV specific than just VA (ironically, I moved to MD and the DMV here is called MVA). Crabs I think of as a Maryland thing for instance. And now I'm wondering when people really started calling Central Park by it's name. I went to Funland in high school, but it was just "across the street from Spotsylvania Mall."

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  2. Interesting! I think Hiking means the same thing here in NC also, you just can't beat a hike in the blue ridge!

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  3. Omg, yessss! STAN-ton. None of this Stawn-ton crap! Love it! Proud to be a Virginian. :)

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  4. Love this.

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  5. This is absolutely perfect, Jess! :)

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