The Most 'Boston' Things Ever Said in Boston

Published On 06/14/2016 Published On 06/14/2016
Common Boston sayings bang
Viacheslav Nikolaenko/Shutterstock (Edited)

Bostonians are often accused of speaking their own language. Unlike most charges levied our way, this one sticks. No matter what neighborhood you hail from or how long you’ve called Beantown your home (and of course, you never, ever call it “Beantown”), you’ve likely uttered some or all of these, too.

Flickr/Thomas Hawk

“I just can’t do the B line.”

Because the MBTA is the source of our every last woe, and because it’s easy to scapegoat it even if you’re late for totally unrelated reasons.

“Southie’s over.”

Pick your trending neighborhood of choice, really, but once the first dive bar goes, the gentrification laments begin.


“God, I miss The Basement.”

Filene’s Basement was our discount shopping nirvana, and nothing -- not Zara, not Primark, not any behemoth suburban outlet mall -- can replace it.

“Bang a U-ie at the light.”

We love "banging" things. Especially ephemeral things like U-turns.

Flickr/Nick Stenning

"I couldn’t find parking."

Because honestly, you probably couldn’t. Because there’s none to be had.

“The Sox/Cs/Bs/Pats suck.”

Diehard sports fans? Yes. Fatalists? Also yes. Even nine championships in 15 years can’t change that.

“Why are we still getting phone books?!”

Do other cities deal with this, or is it just us? Regardless, every time those two-ton bricks land on our doorsteps, all social-media hell breaks loose.

Flickr/Yale Law Library

“Fucking blue laws.”

We can’t buy booze before noon on Sundays, we have no happy hours, we have a 2am last call on Saturday nights, we can’t drink outside without ordering food. The Puritans pretty much screwed us over.

“It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.”

Your mom said this, and your mom’s mom, and your mom’s mom's mom before her.


“I just like it iced, all right?”

Because we all drink our Dunkin’ Donuts cold, all year round, even during the darkest winter mornings.

“Why is everyone asleep?”

Always said on a Friday or Saturday night when we lament, yet again, the incredible provincialism of our so-called "big" city.

Flickr/Bill Ilott

“Oh, you live across the river? Yeah, not sure I have time to get together.”

Basically, you commit to either Boston or Cambridge/Somerville and stick to it. There are people who won’t even dine across the Charles. And cross-river dating? HA! Forget it.

“We have to be out-of-town on September 1st.”

Because move-in day is the worst, and rebranding it "Allston Christmas" doesn’t change anything.

Flickr/John Hilliard

“Can you hop out and move the space-saver?”

Said only in winter, ostensibly, when we parking-space obsessives begin marking our shoveled-out territory with whatever’s handy: lawn chairs, baby carriages, inflatable beach toys, you name it.

"No one understands how expensive it is to live here."

San Francisco and NYC grab all the apocalyptic housing headlines, but the rental scene sucks here as well. And we love to talk about it.

[String of expletives while in your car]

Because driving in this city is hell on wheels. As a collective, we are rude, aggressive, and often downright dangerous motor-vehicle operators.


“Why do I live here again?”

Complaining about Boston is a rite of passage for residents: weather, provincialism, terrible driving, the rental market -- it’s all on the table.

This is why I live here.”

Said on the first nice day of the year, or at the height of summer when New England lets its true colors shine and winter is but a distant memory.

Flickr/Tom Simpson

“Yankees suck.”

Because the classics never go out of style.

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Meaghan Agnew never says any of these things. Ever. Don't believe her? She'll prove it on Twitter.



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