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CoalSpeak
The Official CoalRegion Dictionary
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Cakie : the late, great, Shendo Catlick High School. Closed in 1968 as part of the transformation of the Immaculate Heart Academy into Cardinal Brennan.
call for : to stand outside someone's house and yell for them to come out (to play, visit, etc.). "Where was ya? I was calling for ya for twunny minutes!"
cam-ra : like turdy-five millimeters or 120's.
Cappy, the : The Capitol Theatre, Shenandoah. "I seen Beatlemania at the Cappy."
card party : A church institution where old ladies went to gamble and cheat each other at cards and bunco (a dice game) And bring home more prizes (see Chinese Auction). One of the games played was Haasy or Hawzey. See also Children's Card Party .
carload of rock : Something worthless; often used when getting stiffed for payment. Years ago, if the miner never showed up to pay his tick bill, the storekeeper would say he got a "carload of rock" from the miner. In coal mining, sometimes miners had to fill their mine cars with rock before getting at the coal. Obviously, a mine car full of rock is virtually worthless compared to a car full of coal.
Carnal Brennan, Brinnin : Cardinal Brennan High School (originators of this site are alumni)
catlick : Catholic. "I ain't goin' ta no Catlick school. I'm goin' ta Shendo Valley, da frick."
CCD'ers : same as Publics. The public school kids that used to come in to our Catholic school one afternoon a week to get the fire and brimstone of Catholicism drilled into them after they've spent the last week in their heathen ways at the public school. CCD stands for "Confraternity of Christian Doctrine" (though I don't think any of the kids, Catlick or Public, knew this). These kids were good for blaming things on, e.g., "Did you carve that four letter word into your desktop??" "No, s'ter, it musta been one a dem CCD kids." The nuns always believed it, too. I don't think they liked the CCD kids much.
cemmies : cemeteries.
chances : raffle tickets
Charlie Chaplin : term used when your left and right shoes are on the wrong feet "Hey, switch yer shoes. They're on Charlie Chaplin"
Chendo : see Shendo
Children's card party : A fund-raising event (see card party) where kids were sent out into the streets to sell chances, competing grade against grade, with big posters with thermometers or whatever where we colored in up to the dollar amount each class brought in.
Chilly Willy : Old-fashioned ice cream vendor. Sells it out of his truck from Tamaqua to Mahanoy Plane.
chimblee or chimlee or chimilee : chimney.
Chinese apple : pomegranate; the red fruit with the edible red seeds.
Chinese auction : A church/school auction performed by placing a number in a cup associated with a particular item. The auctioneer calls the numbers picked for each item. If he called your number, you were the lucky winner. The items were to be purchased and donated to the church or school by the parishioners to raise money. Actually, most of the items consisted of junk laying around people's houses. They thought they were doing more good by donating them to the church then throwing the item in the garbage. You ended up throwing that particular item away, or better yet, donating it to a Chinese auction.
chinkies : small firecrackers. A little bigger than a "lady finger" and smaller than a "M-80". So called because the paper wrapping appeared to be Chinese newspaper. Admittedly not a very politically correct word.
Chippy bombin : Tossing firecrackers under the cars parked in the local make out spot. The really brave ones would creep up to the car and listen carefully to make sure the timing was exactly right for the blast.
chippy chasin' : looking in the cemmies or other isolated areas for parkers (dates parking to "make out").
churched : Churched is when a priest prays over a new mother and she is excused from attending holy mass for up to one year. After a baby is born, the mother is either churched at home or at the baby's christening (within 1-3 weeks after birth). Possibly an old eastern European custom. Another custom was the mother did not leave the home until the child was baptized.
chuz know chuz want? : "Do you (pl.) know what you want?"
ciggie : cigarette. "Yo, can I bum a ciggie from ya?"
cin-cins : Real name is "Sen-Sens". Small, square shaped candy that came in a purple package and had a strange perfume aroma. They had sort of a licorice flavor and turned your whole mouth black.
clicker : the remote control, as for your television. "Hand me the clicker, willya? I don't wanna get up off this couch!"
close da light : turn off the light (probably of PA Dutch origin)
CMP : Chocolate, Marshmallow, and crushed Peanut sundae. Very popular ice cream sundae in the coal region, served at various ice cream parlors in the area. Usually served with vanilla ice cream, but chocolate also works. Several viewers have commented that a CMP sundae is unheard of outside the coal region.
coalbank : a hill made of coal or coal effluvium. "Let's go down the Lost Creek softball field and watch da races upda coalbank." "First, stop at the beer store, I need acourt."
coal candy : hard chunks of black licorice. Many times sold in a black miniature coal bucket, complete with a little hammer.
 
Coal Cracker : a person from the Coal Region
coal hole : 1. A coal mine, usually abandoned. When kids came in really dirty, parents used to say "yiz look like yiz were playin' in a coal hole!" 2. a small independent ("indypindy") or "bootleg" (illegal) shaft or mine dug by locals on land they don't own or lease.
cob corn : corn on the cob. "Dey was servin' bleenies and cob corn out da picnic yesterday."
co-loil : coal oil. Used in the old days as oil in lamps.
colliery : (usually pronounced "call-ree", but proper pronunciation is "call-yer-ee") a coal mine and its collected buildings.
combailer : (pronounced "come-BAIL-er") A big huge boulder, one that takes heavy equipment to move. Usually left over as result of some kind of mining excavation. A popular pastime for kids was to roll large boulders down the slate banks or strippin holes. "Don't go down the strippin holes, a combailer may fall on you."
Company House or Company Home : in the old days, a home owned by the coal mining company.  The mining companies used to own lots of homes, stores, etc. in the area.
da Coney : The Coney Island hamburger joint in Shamokin, reputed to be the oldest of such places in the town. Sold plain hamburgers and hot dogs for years. Only instituted cheese in the late 70's. An "up" is a hot dog; a "down" is a hamburger. Ask for a blowie, a hamburger with the works. Don't forget to have a Big Ben's Red Cream Soda (from Catawissa). There are two Coney Islands in Pottsville, also called "da Coney". All Coneys are famous for after midnight partygoers.
conniption : a fit of hysteria or anxiety. "Awright, awready! I'm comin'!! Don't have a conniption!"
contack : contact lens. "One of my contacks just fell out, da frick!"
core-deen : accordion.  "He plays the coredeen real good, yo!" Also known as a "Stomach Steinway".
cornin(g) : throwing corn at houses/people/cars; takes place as part of mischiefing. "Dem bastards corned my car!"
corpse house : funeral home or mortuary. This term seems to be quite common in the Wilkes-Barre/Scanton area. This from a viewer: in the days before funeral homes, the body of the deceased was laid out in its own house for viewing. When people were to pay their respects to the family, they would say "I'm going to the corpse house". The name carried over to funeral homes. See also parlor.
couple, coupla : some number from 2 to approximately 6 -- anywhere else it means 2, and only 2. I found this out when I asked how many? when someone used it once. They looked at me like I was an idiot.
couple, two, tree : a few, several. "We kin go down da Hozie fer a couple, two, tree beers."
crack the window : open the window slightly (a crack)
cribben : structure made of railroad ties that supports a railroad bed above it. The bed is usually made of coal dirt, with railroad tracks crossing the top of it. The ties hold the dirt in place, forming sort of a crib. Sort of a retaining wall made of railroad ties. A well-known cribben exists at the base of the Vulcan in Mockanoy City.
crick : a small stream of running water (creek). "Don't fall in the Shit Crick!"
cripes or holy cripes : expression of alarm, surprise, or disgust. Used instead of saying "Christ" which would be taking the Lord's name in vain. See example in gotchies.
crows : cigarette. Ed. note: anyone know how cigarettes came to be known as "crows"?
cruisin' : driving around in a car, usually at night, repeating a standard loop through the middle of town (like Main Street in Shenandoah or Independence Street in Shamokin). Cruisin' is an extremely popular pastime in many Coal Region towns. As an example, Shenandoah has been a favorite "cruisin" town for generations. The town has a well-established cruise route allowing you to hit all the major teen hangout corners. People come from all over to cruise Shendo. The route is as follows: Go north on Main Street to the top of town (Washington Street). Take a right, go down one block, and make a u-turn in the Acme parking lot (say 'hello' to all your buddies who are temporarily parked there). Go back up Washington Street to Main. Return down Main Street, wave (or yell) to some people at Burke's corner on Main & Lloyd, continue on down past the State Store to Cherry Street. Right on Cherry, going around the block on Ferguson, then Oak Street, then back to Main. Repeat about 400 million times (more if it's summer). See also "Yo, come around!".
cubby hole, coobie hole : a small space used to store or hide things. Probably derived from "cupboard", as a small cupboard. Pronounced "coopie hole" in Schuylkill Haven.  See also kootch
Cup-mont : Kulpmont.
cump-nee : 1) When you have friends over da house. 2) Place of employment. "My cumpnee should be here at tree turdy." "My dad works at the ice cumpnee"
cupalin : (coop-a-leen) a hat of stretchy fabric worn during winter. This word is primarily used by those of Italian heritage, possibly deriving from "Cupacin". The Cupacin were monks that wore a small head covering. See also dinky.
cuppa : cup of. "I'll have a cuppa coffee."
cure what ails ya : make you feel better, even if you're not actually sick. "Here, take a shot a'dis whiskey. This'll cure what ails ya!"
cut or cuts : used when ordering pizza by the slice. One slice is a "cut". "I'll take tree cuts of pepperoni, and two cuts wit mushrooms."
CYO : Catholic Youth Organization. The athletics organization through which most Catholic elementary schools in the region play sports. Usually basketball.
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