How Do You Say Caramel?

7 Dialect Differences That Make Us Cringe

We have to learn to agree to disagree but honestly these difference have caused so many arguments.

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Once we get to college, we are automatically thrown into a world that is much bigger than the one we previously knew. Suddenly, we are not amongst the same people we have known our whole lives from our hometowns. We are amongst people from all across the world. It is an opportunity to find out how much we have in common but also to realize how much our home has shaped us.

The biggest identifier that someone grew up in a different area are dialectal differences. Here are a few that I found once I came to college, mostly inspired from my upbringing in a Pennsylvania Dutch town:

1. Car-a-mel or Carmel?

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I do know that the officially 'correct' pronunciation is care-a-mel. I totally understand that. But, both pronunciations are socially accepted. And, I will always side with the car-mel pronunciation. Why? How do you pronounce car? Enough said.

2. Tennis shoes or sneakers? 

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I had always thought that tennis shoes were for tennis and running shoes for running. Sneakers are just the general footwear for going to the gym or a casual walk. When I met my good friend from Seattle, however, I found out that the West Coast refers to all athletic shoes as sneakers. This is jarring for me. Why would tennis shoes be for anything other than tennis? The world may never know.

3. Roundabout or rotary? 

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I am honestly not sure if I have a preference for this one. I usually say roundabout, but I have also heard people say rotary.

4. Pop or soda?

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The way we talk about carbonated beverages differs by state alone, so it definitely differs across state lines. My friend from Erie, Pennsylvania says pop but everyone else in my group says soda.

5. Dippy eggs or sunny side up eggs? 

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Okay, the next two are specifically Pennsylvania Dutch. Up until college, I could order dippy eggs and get eggs that you dip toast in. It made perfect sense to me. Dippy eggs are the ones with the dippy yolk. No one knows what I am talking about with this though. Most people assume I am talking about some kind of soft-boiled eggs. I have learned to ask for sunny side up eggs or over-easy eggs whenever I order breakfast but it does not slip off my tongue as dippy eggs does.

6. Chicken Pot Pie is or isn't a pie? 

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I grew up with a wonderful soup filled with chicken, square noodles, potatoes, and the most wonderful broth. Apparently, the rest of the world grew up with a pie. I get that I am from the only region that does not have Chicken Pot Pie as a pie but that does not mean I am any less disturbed by this.

7. On line or in line? 

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My roommate is from Long Island. It bothers me so much when she says, "I am going to stand on line." I imagine her standing on top of someone's head waiting to buy her groceries. If we are forming a line, we are in the line. She says it is all because you stand on the ground for a line but the whole time you are within a line. I understand all of the other differentiations but this one just bothers me and gives me never-ending fodder to bother my roommate with.

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50 Things To Be Happy About

It's the little things in life.
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It is always easier to pick out the negatives in life. We tend to dwell on them and drown out the happy moments. I asked a friend to tell me something that made them happy. They sarcastically laughed at my question then thought about it for a minute. Nothing. But they could easily come up with things that made them unhappy. Then I read them my list, and they were smiling and laughing in agreement the whole time. There are so many more things to be happy and laugh about than we realize. After all- it's the little things in life that can mean the most! Here are 50 things that make me happy. What are your 50?

  1. The first warm day of the year
  2. Laughing so hard your abs ache
  3. Freshly washed sheets
  4. Looking through old pictures
  5. The smell of a coffee shop
  6. Eating cookie dough
  7. Reading a bible verse that perfectly fits your current situation
  8. Seeing someone open a gift you got them
  9. Eating birthday cake
  10. A shower after a long day
  11. Marking something off your to-do list
  12. Drinking ice cold water on a really hot day
  13. Dressing up for no reason
  14. Breakfast food
  15. Being able to lay in bed in the morning
  16. Finding something you love at the store
  17. And it’s on sale
  18. Cute elderly couples
  19. When a stranger compliments you
  20. Getting butterflies in your stomach
  21. Taking a nap
  22. Cooking something delicious
  23. Being lost for words
  24. Receiving a birthday card in the mail
  25. And there's money in it
  26. Finally cleaning your room
  27. Realizing how fortunate you are
  28. Waking up from a nightmare and realizing it wasn't real
  29. Fresh fruit
  30. Walking barefoot in the grass
  31. Singing along to a song in the car
  32. Sunrises
  33. Sunsets
  34. Freshly baked cookies with a glass of milk
  35. Summertime cookouts
  36. Feeling pretty
  37. Looking forward to something
  38. Lemonade
  39. Comfortable silences
  40. Waking up in the middle of the night and realizing you have more time to sleep
  41. Surviving another school year
  42. The cold side of the pillow
  43. The smell of popcorn
  44. Remembering something funny that happened
  45. Laughing to yourself about it
  46. Feeling weird about laughing to yourself
  47. Printed photographs
  48. Wearing a new outfit
  49. The sound of an ice cream truck
  50. Feeling confident
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Friends Don’t Let Friends Be White Feminists

I am white. I am a feminist. But I try very hard to avoid being a "white feminist."

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Preamble 1: I'm not sure if you're aware, but it's a humid, grey April afternoon and being a woman comes with extra challenges, to which I definitely did not agree but they were probably in some fine print that I skimmed. Bummer. Anyway, feminism! Feminism's place in 2019 is contested but I am coming from a place of having heard many of the sides; given that, it would be lovely if you would hear my side.

Preamble 2: Before I get into this topic, I want to acknowledge the place of privilege from which I come. Look at my fully Irish name, I am white. Believing in social, economic, and political gender equality, I am a feminist. But I try very hard to avoid being a "white feminist". As a student at Texas A&M;, a university that sometimes strays into homogeneity in both thought and demographic, I've been noticing a pattern in many conversations concerning gender equality. The pattern is that of white feminism.

White feminism is a Western-styled picking and choosing of feminism that entails a set of beliefs tolerating the ignorance of issues that mostly impact women of color.

Contrast this philosophy with intersectional feminism, which recognizes multiple identities and experiences within us, while promoting more united gender equality. Without intersectionality, our essence cannot stand against oppression and stand for equality without acknowledgment of the nuances of different historical struggles. As women, we face difficulties, but not all women face the same oppressions and marginalizations – and that cannot be overlooked in narratives.

As far as gendered-based violence goes, the Justice Department estimates that one in five women and one in seventy-one men will experience rape in the US. However, here's where the necessary nuances come in.

Women and men of color are more likely to experience this form of violence than white women or men. Women and men who are LGBTQ+are more likely to experience this form of violence than straight women or men. Lower income women and men are more likely to experience this form of violence than women or men in the highest income brackets.

So, yes, one in five women and one in seventy-one men are rape victims. But quoting that statistic without disambiguating the data can mislead readers or listeners of the ways that different identities amalgamate into this final number. Essentially, disproportional oppressions exist. All people are at risk for gendered violence, specifically rape, in America, but some people are more at risk.

If you need more of an explanation, think of the following analogy. White feminism is to intersectional feminism what #AllLivesMatter is to #BlackLivesMatter. Everyday Feminism contends, "the former's attempt at inclusiveness can actually erase the latter's acknowledgment of a unique issue that disproportionately affects a specific group of people".

If you ever find yourself guilty of white feminism, (I've been there!) know that we are all evolving. As long as you are open to education, we are all on the same side.

Here are three vital steps you can take to make your feminism intersectional!

1. Reflect on yourself. 

Reflect on your long-held beliefs based on your perspective alone could not apply to someone else. Reflect on your privileged experiences and acknowledge them for what they are.

2. Think about others. 

Once you've figured your internal state out from step one, you ought to look at the experiences of others with the same level of validity as your own. Ethically, feminism focuses on equality. Yes, that means stopping sexism, but it also expands to mean stopping complicated systemic oppressions that affect more than just white women. That said, white feminists are not the enemy in the fight for equality, rather, they are underinformed.

3. Don’t be afraid to grow. 

Say you were wrong. There's less shame in it than you think. In fact, I genuinely wish our culture was more forgiving of people who made an honest mistake in their past, but their hearts were/are in the right place.

Allow yourself to move onwards and upwards. We are all works-in-progress. We are all striving for better versions of ourselves. Intention is everything and your intention should be to always learn.

Intersectional feminism is challenging, like all educations. If you're doing it right, it should force you to think and even make you feel a little bit uncomfortable. After all, while feminism is here to help, it is not here for your (or my) comfort.

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