Date: Thu, 12 May 1994 22:25:36 CDT


Subject: Re: soda pop

Ed Callary asked about 'soft drink' and 'pop'. I haven't done any biblio

search, but I have lots of data that I'll start working with in '95. When

I mapped some data in 1976, collected 1970-76, I found 'soda' in the

eastern half of MO and 'pop' in the western half, and down the middle

was where 'soda pop' occurred most often. In western areas (urban) of the

state 'coke' is the generic. 'Soft drink' is the form that one would

write. This semester a good half dozen of my dialect class reported on

language contact between soda-speakers and pop-speakers or one of these

with coke-speakers. These forms seem to be patch-workly regional and

are commented on by younger speakers, though not with an implication of

stigmatization. About a dozen years ago when I was on a trip to northern

Alabama, I caught myself saying 'cold drink' with the "right" intonation

and surprised myself. I really don't remember what I used in my "younger

days" in South Texas, but I know I was aware that all of these terms were

used for carbonated beverages. Here I'm aware of Mizzou students' competing

forms and have played around with 'soda' and 'pop' so much that I'm not

sure what I grew up with. I suspect, 'soda' and 'cold drink' (the latter

with the stress pattern of a compound noun). Not what you asked for, Ed,

but you got it anyway. I understand there's regionality to 'pop' and

'soda' in Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin -- also north-south isoglosses.