One of my great joys as an AP news editor was conversations with the New York general desk about localisms.
For instance, there was the time a New York editor during our coverage of the killing of James Jordan (Michael Jordan's father), told me that the distance from Columbia to McColl on the N.C.-S.C. border where the body was found (about 90 miles as the crow flies and a fair amount more by rural two-lane road) looked to her "like a short cab ride."
But my favorites were sending New York stories with South Carolina's strange datelines: Norway, Denmark, Ninety Six, Due West, etc.
None was funnier than to send the desk a story with the dateline of "North, S.C.," which brought the inevitable call*:
N.Y.: Hi, xxxx on the general desk. About this story. North what ...
Me: Just North.
N.Y.: Yes, but North what?
Me: North. North, South Carolina.
N.Y.: Yes, I know. But North what in South Carolina?
Me. No. Just North. The name of the town is North.
N.Y.: Yes, I understand. But North what?
(*Any resemblance to the old Abbott and Costello routine is entirely intentional - and real.)
Meanwhile, others on the desk, hearing my side of the call and knowing it was from New York (we'd given the general desk folks a special number so when it rang we knew it was them), were splitting a gut in laughter.
Don't believe me? Check out this You Tube video from the revival of "You Bet Your Life" with Bill Cosby: