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Worthless, at least in Newton (and in particular, West Newton). "My friends and parents still use it today,'' says Lucia Kegan. "If you had some piece-of-shit bike some mean kid might say 'quality bike' or if some guy got all loaded on malt liquor and threw up you would call him a 'quality kid.' ''

Dorky, stupid, loserish, etc., NOT a synonym for "gay," although that usage is known in the Boston area. For example: "The New Kids on the Block ah wicked quayuh." Carrie-Anne Dedeo reports that when she was in middle school, the long-A sound was so pronounced that "I saw most people spelling it (in notes and graffiti on desks) as 'quare' instead of 'queer'.

Hairstyle allegedly peculiar to Quincy. "When I was in high school (in Hingham), we used to scorn skanks from Quinzee who sported the Quinzee Claw - bangs Aquanetted into a stiff claw over their foreheads."
Kathy Touhey

Also see: Hair wall.

Girlfriend, in Newton's Nonantum neighborhood.
Steven Liberace

Young resident of certain neighborhoods, for example: "Rozzie rat" and "Dot rat" (the former being a denizen of Roslindale, the latter of Dorchester). The Back Bay and Beacon Hill do not have rats, at least not of the human variety.

DotRat interviews a Dot rat:

What novelist George V. Higgins called the T.
William Carlson

An uncooked egg.
Linda Petrous

Meteorological condition characterized by low temperatures and a biting wind: "Boy, it's wicked rawrout theah!"
Linda Petrous


A bun stuffed with some sort of seafood salad, for example, a "lobsta roll." Often served on Massachusetts frankfurt buns, which look like they've been turned inside out (i.e., the outside of the bun is as white as the inside).

A traffic circle. One of Massachusetts' two main contributions to the art of traffic regulation (the other being the now largely gone red-and-yellow pedestrian-crossing light).

Note: Propa rotaries ah big mothas, typically wheah several roads (oah two main roads) come togetha. They ah not to be confused with roundabouts, which ah cute, dainty little things used to "calm" traffic in subdivisions.

Native, brownish stone that was carved into large blocks and used to build large public buildings in the 19th century (frequently under the direction of architect H.H. Richardson). Examples include Trinity and Old South churches in Copley Square, one of the Chestnut Hill Reservoir pump houses and the Framingham train station. An outcropping of the stone has been preserved on West Street in Hyde Park.

Roxbury Puddingstone against the backdrop of the Hancock Building:


What the natives call Roslindale, Boston's premier neighborhood; also an adjective for a person or place in the neighborhood. Not to be confused with Southie, Eastie or Westie.

The first circumferential highway (yes, highway; Bostonians don't drive on freeways) in North America, roughly 12 miles from downtown. Also the generic name for the state's high-tech region (even if most new high-tech companies now open up along Rte. 495 another 15 miles to the west).

It's also our equivalent of New York's Sixth Avenue - a roadway with a perfectly good name that bureaucrats are determined to change. The official reason for renaming Rte. 128 as I-95 and I-93 (depending on section) is that the interstate system cannot survive without having all of its roads connected to each other. Rte. 95 was originally going to be rammed through the heart of Boston and Cambridge; when Gov. Frank Sargent stopped the project, the 'crats found themselves with a gap between 95 north of the city and 95 south of the city. So now the Rte. 128 signs are gradually shrinking and disappearing.