Word of the Week – Buffalo Speedway
I’m fixin to light out for the horse show in Waco, Texas. Like the rest of the world, I depend on the online tools for distances and driving instructions, but there’s nothing like an old -fashioned paper highway map for local flavor.
Still, even the map won’t help with pronunciation. I had an east coast client with a legal problem in a place she called Wacko, Texas, and she wasn’t trying to be funny. It’s Way-co of course. Around Austin, folks will raise their eyebrows if you speak of Manor, Texas as if we might stop by for tea and cucumber sandwiches. Say Maine-er, y’all.
You might at least expect San Felipe Road to have a Spanish accent, but no, the correct pronunciation in Houston is San (sounds like can) Phillip-y. Major Houston thoroughfares have names out of the wild west, like Old Spanish Trail and Buffalo Speedway, conjuring the image of a vast herd thundering through the pricey neighborhoods.
On the way to Waco, I could turn off on Old Potato Road, or take a side trip to Dime Box, Texas. I’ve never actually seen Woman Hollering Creek, but the road sign always raises the question, what kind of ruckus might have happened there? On my old paper map, I can see Raisin, Texas, which sounds even smaller than Dime Box. A road trip is a good reminder, there’s a different world outside the city limits.
June 13, 2016 @ 2:35 pm
Wow! What a fun blog! I particularly like the word of the week segment. I did a word of the week for my daughter starting when she was only two — usually fairly esoteric words — and she ended up with quite the sophiticated vocabulary. Can’t wait to read more! BLG
June 13, 2016 @ 8:06 pm
Let’s send that girl a new word and see what she says. Think of a good one.
June 14, 2016 @ 4:24 pm
Spot on! I am always intrigued by Refugio, Texas — pronounced Re-fury-o.
June 14, 2016 @ 4:38 pm
Enjoying the blog. Keep it up!
June 16, 2016 @ 3:49 am
Thanks for reminding me about Old Potato Road!
I love street names. One of my favorites is Poultry, in the City of London, where a massive glass office building says, in imposing lettering, ONE POULTRY.
There are so many good ones. The best are reminders of bygone human activity. Not so long ago, commerce was about squawking chickens, not derivatives.
June 17, 2016 @ 4:10 pm
so many streets in Houston have an interesting background. My friend Margaret lives on Lemac and the is camel spelled backwards. Who knew?
June 19, 2016 @ 7:32 am
Let’s look up some words with Spanish derivation.