November 04, 2008
Cermele: Fun with Name-Calling
By Joe Cermele
While fishing the surf the other night in Manasquan, NJ, I came across this graffiti on the inlet breakwall. I'm pretty sure it was not there one week ago. I had to take this picture of the hooligan art work as it sparked a fun blog idea.
For those unfamiliar (and most probably are) "Benny" is a slang term given by Jersey Shore locals to summer visitors from the northern metro towns of Bayonne, Elizabeth, Newark, or anyone from New York. As summer is over, I guess the spray paint crew saw reason to celebrate the end of the "invasion." The irony here is that the summer dollars spent by "Bennys" in bars, bait shops and on party boats really helps boost the town economy and keep local homes worth $200,000 selling for $1,000,000. But I digress.
While "Benny" is not fishing slang, you do hear things like "Googan," "Jabronie," and "Jamoke" in my area to describe those guys that troll through your chum slick, weasel in right next to you on the jetty, or are just clueless when it comes to the local fishing scene, eagerly dropping hundreds on whatever the tackle shop owner says they need when three lures is all it takes.
In South Jersey, they call them "Shoobies." Interestingly, I learned this term was coined in the 1920s to refer to folks from Philadelphia that would day-trip to the shore via train and bring their lunches in shoe boxes. Now it refers to the dude who busts his butt trying to walk on snot-slick jetty rocks in a pair of Crocs.
I'm sure there are a bunch of fun nicknames from all walks of fishing, from the largemouth circles to the ice fishing crowds. So what do you call your Shoobies, Jamokes, and Googans?