Tuesday, September 14, 2010
The Gyro Police
The Austin Gyro Police are still at it after all these years. And I will no longer be intimidated, thank you NYC and NJ!
I wrote about this a year or more ago on this blog: How relieved I was to find that in NYC and Jersey, the Greek sandwich "gyro" was pronounced JIE-ro. How "scarred" I'd been 20 years ago in Austin when I asked for a "JIE-ro" and the pretentious bitch behind me in line mock-whispered to her boyfriend, "She doesn't know how to pronounce HYEE-ro!" (Funnily, up north when I -- frightened by Austin PC -- tried to order it as a HYEE-ro, the Greeks behind the counter thought I wanted a hero sandwich! When I spelled the word, they said, "Oh, a JIE-ro!" I felt I was home at last!) :)
Today I was around campus for a haircut and stopped off at a nearby Greek place on the way home. A very white, non-Greek young lady was behind the counter. As I looked at the menu, I asked how much for a single JIE-ro, not a plate... She very pointedly answered, "A HYEE-ro is $6.99..." OK. She thought she was schoolin' me! I kept quiet for a second while I continued to look at the menu. Noticing that their gyros listed were made of PORK or CHICKEN!
So I asked, "Do you have any lamb JIE-ros?"
"We do have lamb HYEE-ros, but they're more, $9.99."
Then I had to burst out with, "I'm from New York, and the Greeks there pronounce it JIE-ROS, so I've gotta say it that way! Thanks." [b'bye -- I left, not in a huff over the word, but because I didn't want to pay $9.99 for a single sandwich that I used to pay $4.99 for in NY.]
OK, so I lied about where I was from. But it felt so good to lie, just to let the snooty girl know that, yes, I'm aware of the HYEE-ro pronunciation, but REAL GREEKS serving the food in NYC don't feel the need to be pretentious as shit!
HYEE-ro is sooooooooooo Austin. I'm soooooooooooo over that kind of thing. I wanna be in the land of $4.99 lamb JIE-ros again!