STREETCAR, NOT TROLLEY

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AMERICAN ANECDOTES

When I'm in New Orleans, I find it’s generally desirable to get a hotel room near Canal ST or St. Charles ST.  These are well located and it is easy to walk over to a streetcar stop.  These are two main thoroughfares and will connect with  with most of the city.

 

The old trolleys are painfully slow and generally not air conditioned but it's still nice from the historical perspective.  And when you’re in New Orleans, you will be expected to remember to call it a streetcar.  In most other cities, you would be catching a trolley.  In Los Angeles or Memphis or Philadelphia, you are simply jumping on the trolley and it gets you to your location.

 

In New Orleans, you ride a streetcar not a trolley. The locals will take offense if you call it a trolley.  You’ll be adamantly corrected and then shunned as a foolish tourist.  They won’t even accept the notion that the two words are synonyms.

 

It may seem strange to an outsider but I guess it does make some sense.  Imagine if Tennessee Williams wrote a play called “A Trolley Called Desire.”  His editor would have been like, “Get the fuck out of here!  You can’t expect anyone to show up for a play or a movie called “ A Trolley Called Desire.”  Marlon Brando might have ended up with a completely different career trajectory.  

 

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Morningglory's picture

Love for N'orleans

You brought me memories of that cryptic place. I never did have the opportunity to hop on a streetcar though. Maybe someday in the future. 


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fuche_bu's picture

It's fun--especially the old

It's fun--especially the old wooden seated ones.