Know the lingo before you visit 1. Grachki (grach'-key): Chicagoese for "garage key" as in, "Yo, Theresa, waja do wit da grachki? Howmy supposta cut da grass if I can't git intada grach?" 2. Sammich: Chicagoese for sandwich. When made with sausage, it's a sassage sammich; when made with shredded beef, it's an Italian Beef sammich, a local delicacy consisting of piles of spicy meat in a perilously soggy bun. 3. Da: This article is a key part of Chicago speech, as in "Da Bears" or "Da Mare" (the latter denoting Richard M. Daley, or Richie, as he's often called). 4. Jewels: Not family heirlooms or a tender body region, but a popular name for one of the region's dominant grocery store chains. "I'm goin' to Jewels to pick up some sassage." 5. Field's: Marshall Field, a prominent Chicago department store. Also Carson Pirie Scott, another major department store chain, is simply called "Carson's." 6. Tree: The number between two and four. "We were lucky dat we only got tree inches of snow da udder night." 7. Over by dere: Translates to "over by there," a way of emphasizing a site presumed familiar to the listener. As in, "I got the sassage at Jewel s down on Kedzie, over by dere." 8. KaminskiPark: The mispronounced name of the ballpark where the Chicago White Sox (da Sox) play baseball. Comiskey Park was recently renamed U.S. Cellular Field (da Cell). 9. Frunchroom: As in, "Getottada frunchroom wit dose muddy shoes." It's not the "parlor." It's not the "living room." In the land of the bungalow, it's the "frunchroom," a named derived, linguists believe, from "front room." 10. Use: Not the verb, but the plural pronoun 'you!' "Where use goin'?" 11. Downtown: Anywhere near Da Lake, south of Da Zoo (Lincoln Park Zoo) and north of Soldier Field. 12. The Lake: Lake Michigan. (What other lake is there?) It's often used by local weathermen, "cooler by Da Lake." HAD TO TAKE IT OUT! 14. Braht: Short for Bratwurst. "Gimme a braht wit kraut." 15. Goes: Past or present tense of the verb "say." For example, "Then he goes, 'I like this place'!" 16. Guys: Used when addressing two or more people, regardless of each individual's gender. 17. Pop: A soft drink. Don't say "soda" in this town. "Do ya wanna canna pop?" 18. Sliders : Nickname for hamburgers from White Castle, a popular midwestern burger chain. "Dose sliders I had last night gave me da runs." 19. The Taste: Da Taste of Chicago Festival , a huge extravaganza in Grant Park featuring samples of Chicagoland cuisine which takes place each year around the Fourth of July holiday. 20. "Jieetyet?": Translates to, "Did you eat yet?" 21. Winter and Construction: Punch line to the joke, "What are the two seasons in Chicago?" 22. Cuppa Too-Tree: is Chicagoese for "a couple, two, three" which really means "a few." For example, "Hey Mikey, dere any of dem beerz left in da cooler over by dere?" "Yeh, a cuppa too-tree." 23. 588-2300: Every one in Chicago knows this commercial jingle and the carpet company you'll get if you call that number -- Empire! (Famous for their salesmen using 30 inch yard sticks to measure your home for carpeting). 24. Junk Djor: You will usually find the 'junk dr aw er' in the kitchen filled to the brim with miscellaneous... but very important, junk. 25. Southern Illinois: Anything south of I-80. 26. Expressways: The Interstates in the immediate Chicagoland area are usually known just by their 'name' and not their Interstate number: Da Dan Ryan ("Da Ryan"), da Stevenson, da Kennedy, da Eisenhower (da "Ike"), and da Edens. 27. Gym Shoes: The rest of the country may refer to them as sneakers or running shoes, but Chicagoans will always call them gym shoes!