As we’ve heard from the commercials, all eyes are on Minneapolis. And thousands of ears are here, too, as visitors have flocked from around the country to see the 2014 MLB All-Star Game.
While known to have a distinct accent, Minnesotans also have a bit of a native language that may be foreign to our ASG visitors. Thus, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to come up with a list of Minnesota terminology to help ease people in to the Land O’ Lakes.
Uff-Da (oo-fh dah): Of Norwegian origin, this phrase is used to express sensory overload. It can be used to express surprise, relief, astonishment or exhaustion. It can also be used as an alternative to swear words. While not as widely used as some of the other phrases, it is perhaps the most stereotypical Minnesotan expression.
Dontcha Know (doh-nt-cha noh): Literally translated it means “don’t you know.” However, in Minnesota, it is generally just tagged onto the end of sentences as a way to engage the listener and make sure they are on the same page, versus actually asking them if they understand.
You Betcha (yuu-bet-chah): A form of agreement. Can be, and often is, used in conjunction with “dontcha know.”
Hot Dish: Basically a casserole, only better. Hot Dish is widely used in Minnesota to describe all casseroles. However, true Minnesotans know that a hot dish is a special kind of casserole that contains a starch (usually, if not always, tater tots) a protein (hamburger, or SPAM if you are feeling very Minnesotan), some sort of canned, or frozen, vegetable and some sort of “cream of something” soup.
Lutefisk: Not something that many people eat, or mention widely. However, it is another stereotype for Minnesota, so visitors should be aware in case they need to engage with a local and have a lack of topics at hand to discuss. Lutefisk is a dish made from aged stockfish, such as cod or ling, or dried whitefish. The stockfish is dried, soaked in water and then soaked in lye. When prepared right, it has a gelatinous consistency.
Pop: Not “soda,” not “Coke.” Here, it’s “pop.”
Up North: This is a common summer phrase, so visitors should be well versed with this one. It should be noted, Up North is not a directional phrase, as in “just got up north to Highway 35W” — it is a place. “Up North” is where all Minnesotan’s cabins are. When someone mentions they are going “up north” it includes any land an hour north, west, east or south of the Twin Cities that has a lake. Which is everywhere.
Kitty-Corner: Diagonally across from. Not “Caddy-Corner” or “Catercorner.” If you use those terms people will automatically know you are from out-of-town.
Skol (skohl): Yet another Scandinavian influence found in Minnesota, translated it means cheers or good health. It is the fight song for the Minnesota Vikings and used among sports fans when good things happen with our teams.
Minne and Paul: The Minnesota Twins! Minne and Paul are the twin brothers depicted at Target Field shaking hands over the Mississippi River. This is a must know for anyone attending the ASG Game.