This map clearly shows that the only place a hoagie is called a hoagie is the Philadelphia region. Everyone else knows a hoagie as a sub. This never even dawned on me that I am from the only place that uses the term hoagie. I remember college in Pittsburgh thinking it was weird that a hoagie was a sub or hero and obviously these Yinzers were way off the mark in their categorizing. We all know rubber bands aren’t gum-bands, and it’s slippery not slippy. After seeing this map, I have a bit more perspective that I was the odd man out. I think this is a great thing though because it stamps the fact that Philly has it’s own uniqueness in the sandwiches we create. There’s a reason it’s a PHILLY cheese steak and why we are the only people who know what a hoagie is. Things are created and perfected in Philly, something to be proud of. Why other places can’t nail down a cheese steak is almost comical because it’s such a simple sandwich. There is something special about a hoagie from Wawa.
The other map I enjoy is the soda / pop / coke map. Let’s be completely biased here and see exactly who calls it soda. The Northeast, Southwest, Milwaukee / St. Louis, and Florida. The full name is called Soda Pop. The noun is the first word. Smart people call things nouns. Pop is a descriptive feature of soda. The carbonation is the pop, not the drink. Pop is the sound a balloon makes when it breaks, not a drink. You’d also never call something by a brand name as it’s preferred choice. I no doubt have ordered a soda as “coke” before but that’s because I wanted coke. If I order a coke in the South is it possible to get a ginger ale?
Here are 22 other maps of areas that pronounce and use words various ways. I noticed that I said the words in the way my region did almost every time. It’s funny how easy it is to take the position that however you grew up and how words are pronounced and described around you is the right way. These should offer a larger perspective that just because you think one way, doesn’t mean a different person thinks another way and you both can be right. Being open minded is critical.