21 Words That St. Louis Natives Can’t Pronounce for Shit

As a city founded by French immigrants along a major port, most of our streets are named in foreign languages -- and we pronounce them in a bastardized fashion. And then sometimes our country grammar causes a uniquely Midwestern weirdness with vowels that further complicates our St. Louis dialect. Welcome to STL; some words just come out weird around hurre.

As a city founded by French immigrants along a major port, most of our streets are named in foreign languages -- and we pronounce them in a bastardized fashion. And then sometimes our country grammar causes a uniquely Midwestern weirdness with vowels that further complicates our St. Louis dialect. Welcome to STL; some words just come out weird around hurre.

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44
In St. Louis, it is very common to change "o" sounds to "a" sounds. This means that when some people say "Highway 44" it sounds like "Highway Farty Far."
Photo courtesy of Doug Kerr / Flickr
44

In St. Louis, it is very common to change "o" sounds to "a" sounds. This means that when some people say "Highway 44" it sounds like "Highway Farty Far."

Photo courtesy of Doug Kerr / Flickr
Wash
You know you're old-school St. Louis if you drop an "R" into the middle of "wash." Like, "I need to warsh these clothes."
Photo courtesy of Rob D / Flickr
Wash

You know you're old-school St. Louis if you drop an "R" into the middle of "wash." Like, "I need to warsh these clothes."

Photo courtesy of Rob D / Flickr
Herre and Thurr
Nelly famously exaggerated this very STL drawl, where we use a whole bunch of "R"s everywhurr.
Photo courtesy of YouTube
Herre and Thurr

Nelly famously exaggerated this very STL drawl, where we use a whole bunch of "R"s everywhurr.

Photo courtesy of YouTube
Born
This is always a problem. Here, "born" in all forms sounds like "barn." Talking about a newborn might have people thinking that you've built a new house for your horses.
Photo courtesy of smilla4 / Flickr
Born

This is always a problem. Here, "born" in all forms sounds like "barn." Talking about a newborn might have people thinking that you've built a new house for your horses.

Photo courtesy of smilla4 / Flickr
Spoede
If you're driving down highway farty and you say take the SPAY-dee exit, people will know what you mean. But if you pronounce it properly (SPOH-duh), nobody is going to know what you're talking about.
Photo courtesy of Google Maps
Spoede

If you're driving down highway farty and you say take the SPAY-dee exit, people will know what you mean. But if you pronounce it properly (SPOH-duh), nobody is going to know what you're talking about.

Photo courtesy of Google Maps
Creve Coeur
We know this one should be "Crehv-curr" but we're stuck on "Creeve-core."
Photo courtesy of Paul Sableman / Flickr
Creve Coeur

We know this one should be "Crehv-curr" but we're stuck on "Creeve-core."

Photo courtesy of Paul Sableman / Flickr
Fork
If someone in St. Louis says "hand me that fark," what they mean is "hand me that thing that usually hangs out next to a spoon."
Photo courtesy of Paul Sableman / Flickr
Fork

If someone in St. Louis says "hand me that fark," what they mean is "hand me that thing that usually hangs out next to a spoon."

Photo courtesy of Paul Sableman / Flickr
Bellefontaine
It should be "Bell-fon-TAINE" but here it's just "Bell-fountain." Or sometimes even "Bell-E-fountain."
Photo courtesy of henskechristine / Flickr
Bellefontaine

It should be "Bell-fon-TAINE" but here it's just "Bell-fountain." Or sometimes even "Bell-E-fountain."

Photo courtesy of henskechristine / Flickr
Gravois
Your map app will always say this as "Grav-WAH" but that makes us giggle because it's clearly "Grav-OY" or even "Grav-OIZE" here.
Photo courtesy of Paul Sableman / Flickr
Gravois

Your map app will always say this as "Grav-WAH" but that makes us giggle because it's clearly "Grav-OY" or even "Grav-OIZE" here.

Photo courtesy of Paul Sableman / Flickr
Chouteau
Apparently, this is supposed to sound like "shoe-TOE" but we're sticking with "SHOW-toe."
Photo courtesy of Google Maps
Chouteau

Apparently, this is supposed to sound like "shoe-TOE" but we're sticking with "SHOW-toe."

Photo courtesy of Google Maps