Forget North and South Jersey, THIS is NJ’s Biggest Divide
Many fights have ensued when a North Jerseyan and a South Jerseyan discuss which area is best. Don't forget about the Central Jerseyan, yes they do exist. However, the divides between north, south, and central Jersey do not hold a candle to the biggest divide in New Jersey. A sudden realization came over me when I noticed the tone I use with people after they say this one magic phrase. No, it's not Pork Roll vs. Taylor Ham.
If you grew up on the "Jersey Shore," you use the phrase "going to the beach" when going to, well, the beach. However, if you live anywhere else in New Jersey you use the phrase "going to/down the shore." It does not matter if you live in North Jersey, South Jersey, or Central Jersey, if you don't live at the "Jersey Shore" you use this phrase. This my friends is the BIG divide in New Jersey. The "Jersey Shore" vs. the rest of the state.
My dad is from Trenton and he frequently talks about spending his summers as a kid "down the shore." My brother and I have a very visible reaction each time he says "down the shore." Is it a reaction of judgement? Probably. Do we shake our heads? Yes.
People who live near the beach have this way about talking about the rest of the state hinting that they think they are better than everyone else. Nicknames like Shoobies and BENNYs are used to describe people who vacation at the "Jersey Shore." There is even a name for the time of summer when people who don't live in the shore region are gone and people look forward to this time.
Yes, the differences between north, south, and central Jersey is quite startling, but nothing like the Jersey Shore and the rest of the state.
More from SoJO 104.9: