Friday, May 26, 2006

An Itch To Scratch

Here's a regional dialect thingy that's gone under the radar:

You know those flat, rectangular, paper objects with that stuff on them that you scratch off with a coin or fingernail to reveal symbols which, when checked against instructions printed on said object, determine whether or not you've won some currency or other prizes? Well, growing up in slightly south of western Connecticut, we called them "scratch-off tickets," or "scratch-offs." I've come to realize that people from north of there call them "scratch tickets." I remember hearing this for the first time and thinking, "Uh, terrible job by your brain for accidentally omitting the word 'off' from that phrase." It was probably my New Hampshire cousins--who, last I checked, have still not won the "Megabucks," which we called "Lotto."

My friend Jen, from south-central (Connecticut), says "scratchies." But that could just be her cutesy short-form.*

Please write in from your perches all over the world and tell me what you call them. Or just get back to work.

Note: I thought of this because I saw an ad where you can get scratch-offs and win Sox tix when you buy a smoothie at Dunkin Donuts, which "scratch ticket" sayers call "Dunkies."

*"cutesy short-form": from that Wayne's World book, "Extreme Close-Up," when making fun of bands like Enuff Z'enuff.

I'm pretty sure I call them scratch tickets, but "scratch off" is plausible enough that I had to think about it.

/Newton, originally
They're scratch tickets and it's Dunkies. Your point would be?

Rhode Island originally.
That you people are weird.
From my New Hampshire cousin Amy:

"Scratch ticket" sounds right to me. We must be lazy in NH. Why say three words
when you can say two?
Do you have "yard" sales or "tag" sales in CT?
Soda, tonic or pop?
NH: Yard sale. Soda.


My answers: Tag sale. In South Dakota (and in CCR's Fortunate Son) it's rummage sale.

And soda, of course. I think you have to start heading west to get pop. Pennsylvania (where 7-Eleven is called "Sevs"--ugh) and points west.
"yard sale" and "tonic" (actually, tawwwwwww-nic in Mass.)
Howabout "tax"? you know...on people who can't do math?

Seriously though, I think in RI we just called them "scratch-off tickets" like you.
Scratch cards, in the UK

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Location: Rhode Island, United States