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lo•cal•i•ty(loʊˈkæl ɪ ti)
n., pl. -ties.
asphalt jungle A big city. Also more recently, concrete jungle. The reference is both to the vast labyrinth of paved thoroughfares that make up any large city, and to the “law of the jungle” that rules its streets—might makes right, dog-eat-dog, and survival of the fittest. The term was used as early as 1920 in Hand-Made Fables by George Ade.
bedroom community A suburb; an outlying community whose inhabitants almost literally only sleep there, since most of their time is spent traveling to and from or working in a major metropolitan area. In England, such a colony is called a commuting-town, a dormitory town, or sometimes simply a dormitory.
the Big Apple Any large city, but especially New York City; the downtown area of a city. Also the title of a ballroom dance popular in the 1930s, the term is thought to have derived from its use in jazz meaning anything large, such as the earth, the world, or a big northern city, by analogy with the shape of the planet. In use since 1930, the term has recently spawned the derogatory variation the Rotten Apple.
borscht belt The Catskill region of New York State, particularly the resort hotels located there; also borscht circuit. In theater use since 1935, the expression was coined by entertainers who played there to the predominately Jewish clientele, to whose tastes the menu also catered by invariably featuring the borscht, or beet soup, popular with many eastern Europeans.
Hell’s Kitchen A section of midtown Manhattan, from 42nd Street to 57th Street, west of Times Square, and including 8th through 11th Avenues. Until the 1940s, the elevated subway line on 10th Avenue turned the area into one notorious for its slums and high rate of crime. It is the site of Richard Rodgers’s ballet, Slaughter on Tenth Avenue (1936).
neck of the woods Neighborhood, region, locality, territory; parts. Neck ‘a narrow stretch’ of land, woods, ice, etc. —by analogy with the shape of the neck —took on the additional of the woods in the United States to denote a settlement in a wooded area. However, it very quickly came to mean colloquially any neighborhood, for in his Americanisms: the English of the New World (1871), M. Schele DeVere writes:
He will … find his neighborhood designated as a neck of the woods, that being the name applied to any settlement made in the well-wooded parts of the Southwest especially.
the old stamping ground The place of one’s origin; one’s home; an area or establishment that one frequents, a haunt or hangout. This expression apparently derives from the way in which an animal, upon determining where it will rest, tramples down the grass or brush so as to create a more comfortable spot for itself. Nowadays, the phrase often applies to the area where a person spent his childhood.
I made my way from Milledgeville to Williamson County, the old stamping ground. (H. R. Howard, History of Virgil A. Stewart, 1839)
one-horse town See INSIGNIFICANCE.
Podunk See INSIGNIFICANCE.
red-light district A neighborhood containing many brothels. This common expression is derived from the red lights which formerly marked houses of prostitution.
silk-stocking district The elegant section of an American city or town; a wealthy, posh neighborhood. The figurative sense of silk-stocking ‘aristocratic, wealthy’ was employed as early as 1812 by Thomas Jefferson. The expression maintains usage in the United States.
In as chairman … went 47-year-old Hugh Scott Jr., a three-term Congressman from a suburban “silk-stocking” district. (Time, July, 1948)
skid row A sleazy, dilapidated urban area inhabited by vagrants, alcoholics, and other of society’s outcasts. This term is generally considered as having come from Skid Road, an unpaved road in Seattle over which loggers dragged logs from the forest to Yesler’s mill in the 1850s. “Taverns, bawdy houses, and cheap hostelries clustered in the area to cater to the lumberjacks and sailors.” (The N. Y. Times, March 23, 1975) The common American phrase usually describes an area where the buildings, commercial establishments, and residents have all reached an advanced state of deterioration.
The Bowery, … the gaudy, gory, sordid model for all this country’s Skid Rows. (W. R. and F. K. Simpson, Hockshop, 1954)
tenderloin A city district where criminal activity flourishes; an area noted for vice and corruption. This Americanism was reputedly coined by a policeman named Williams in reference to the New York City police district west of Broadway between 23rd and 42nd Streets. In that area, the police were so well-heeled from graft that they could regularly enjoy tenderloin rather than a less expensive meat like hamburger.
Portland is not a puritanic city. In fact, its tenderloin is extensive and worse than anything in San Francisco. (San Francisco Argonaut, November 2, 1903)
whistle-stop A small, insignificant community; a one-horse town. This expression alludes to towns where trains stop only when a certain signal is given. The term gained general popularity as a result of the whistle-stop political campaigns, in which a candidate spoke briefly from the train’s rear platform at each depot along the railroad line. The expression maintains common use today.
The frank, humorous, and, at the same time, challenging story of the men of the U.S. Foreign Service who represent America in the whistle-stops of the world. (Saturday Review, September, 1944)
a wide place in the road A one-horse town; Podunk; Hicksville. The expression, originally only in Western and truck driver use, attained greater popularity after it appeared as the title of an article in Look in 1956.
|Noun||1.||locality - a surrounding or nearby region; "the plane crashed in the vicinity of Asheville"; "it is a rugged locality"; "he always blames someone else in the immediate neighborhood"; "I will drop in on you the next time I am in this neck of the woods"|
gold coast - a rich neighborhood noted for expensive homes and luxurious living; usually along a coastal area; "Chicago's gold coast is along Lake Michigan"
'hood - (slang) a neighborhood
place - a general vicinity; "He comes from a place near Chicago"
proximity - the region close around a person or thing
scenery - the appearance of a place
section - a distinct region or subdivision of a territorial or political area or community or group of people; "no section of the nation is more ardent than the South"; "there are three synagogues in the Jewish section"