There are a few fundamental truths about going to Target— like the fact that it’s impossible to leave the store without a cartful of things you never knew you needed.
And the fact that it’s much more fun to tell people that you bought that cute shirt/mug/tights at “tar-jay.”
— Rachel Kelly (@kelly_rachel_) May 15, 2014
Wherever you first heard the in-joke “French” pronunciation of the retail store, it might have struck you as a regional or group quirk.
However, according to For Women First, the use of the “tarjay” nickname is actually a lot older and more widespread than you might have guessed.
— Stephen Michael Tow (@stowZJE) October 25, 2014
— Abigail N. Passaro (@AbbeyPassaro) November 30, 2015
Founded in 1902 — who knew Target was that old? — in Minneapolis, Minnesota, all evidence seems to point to the Duluth store as being the origin of the name.
Target founder Douglas Dayton says that he first heard women call the store “Tarjay” as early as 1962 in Duluth, Minnesota.
— Kathryn Meier, PhD, MBA (@KathrynMeierPhD) December 10, 2014
They say you learn something new every day.
And of course, if you want to be really fancy, you can also use the “tar-zhay” pronunciation.