Part of this variety in language and dialect comes from the fact that N.C. was influenced by a variety of cultures -- and continues to today. As more and more people continue to move into the state, those dialects and accents will shift like sandbars. And that's ok.
Our good friend Walt Wolfram over at NC State has documented the variety in accents through the years. In one of his latest posts, he writes about some uniquely North Carolina phrases and their origins. Terms like "North Cackalacky," "dingbatter" and "cattywampus." Also glad to see "mash this button" gets a shout-out.
One of the ones he mentions is the "boot" of a car. This is a term that my grandparents (Clinton, N.C.) have long used. Here is some more about the "boot" from Wolfram:
One of the well-known differences between British English and American English is the different terms for the primary storage area of a car. In America, it’s called a trunk and in England it’s a boot. Travelers to the Coastal Plain of North Carolina, however, may be surprised to find that rural residents in these areas also refer to it as a boot. From counties such as Bertie and Martin in the northern Coastal Plain to Brunswick and New Brunswick in the south, older residents may use the term boot to refer to what most Americans call a trunk. The residents did not travel to England to pick up the term; it’s simply an older form in English that was used to refer to the luggage compartment that often sat under the seat by the boots of the driver in horse-and-buggy times. Given the history of small, isolated rural communities in North Carolina, it stands to reason that it is a state that retains is fair share of “relic” dialect terms.
I've been thinking about some other terms that I grew up with (Dunn. N.C.). For one, the use of "hey, bo" (as a substitute for "hey, man" or "what's up?") was one that immediately came to mind. I was somewhat surprised a few years ago to see that this term has been turned into a line of outdoor clothing. I will say that this phrase appears to be unique to Caucasians, but I could be wrong about that.
Another phrase that I grew up hearing mostly from African Americans was "where you stay at?" as a way to ask about their home address or their neighborhood. (This also means that the headline to this post is probably mostly disingenuous.)
Any other phrases or words that you grew up with that would make a list like this? If so, please share them along with where you grew up.