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Words to live by

By Beth D'Addono
Globe Correspondent / May 23, 2010

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A primer on words and phrases you hear in New Orleans and now on HBO’s new series “Treme.’’

Burgundy Just one example of the many streets in New Orleans that are not pronounced the way you think they would be. Forget about the wine, its bur-GUN-dee if you want to blend with the residents.

Creoles Originally describing people with Spanish and French blood, including free people of color, the term has morphed to include people of mixed ethnicity, often with ties to the Caribbean, Africa, and Native Americans.

Dressed The way to order your po’boy if you want it with the works.

Gris gris A voodoo spell or good luck charm (gree gree).

Hubig’s A much loved family-owned pie company with a plant in New Orleans since 1922.

Lagniappe A little something extra thrown in gratis (LAN yap).

Neutral ground Called the median elsewhere, this strip of ground in the middle of a road may refer to what became Canal Street, a division between the French Quarter and American sector, or it may have been a meeting spot for the adversarial Spanish and French settlers. Now, it is where children play and people walk their dogs.

Second line The happy followers of a neighborhood brass band parade.

Where y’at? The standard New Orleans greeting.

BETH D’ADDONO