the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

When in Greece…

Church Tour Guide:  “I hope you’re having a wonderful time at our 39th annual Greek Festival here at the Greek Orthodox Shrine Church of St. Nicholas in Flushing, Queens.  I’m so glad that you have taken the time from the festivities outside to come take a tour of our beautiful church.  I will be your guide.  Feel free to interrupt me at any time to ask a question about the church icons, church practices, or anything else you might want to know about Greek Orthodox culture.”

Neil:  “I have a question.”

Church Tour Guide “Yes?”

Neil:  “Last week on Twitter a couple of us were arguing over whether gyro is pronounced “gear-o” or “year-o.”  Which one IS the correct pronunciation?”

It’s Year-O.  Case Closed.


  1. kristin/ kwr221

    Of, *course it is. 🙂
    I’ve never heard of Gear-o, but I have heard J-eye-ro

    Those pics could be from any Greek fest, I’d recognize them anywhere. We were in Kingston, ON this summer and stumbled upon a little tiny Greek church with a festival off the beaten path. It’s wonderful.

  2. sarah

    I think I need that Yanni in a box. Hilarious.

    Thank you for answering this question for me; now I can order with confidence…

  3. Trish Smith

    I KNEW IT!!!

    Although my understanding is, the pronunciation is more like:


    Where it’s more of a glottal “G”, kinda like the “Ch” in “chutzpah”, but not quite as “hard” of a sound.

  4. Titanium

    Kinda like h-y-eee-rr-oh. Ish.

    Of course. And who says ‘gear-o’? Okay, nevermind.

  5. Rene Foran

    so how was the baklava?

  6. V-Grrrl @ Compost Studios

    Hey, is that a new shirt? Are you wearing a kilt with it? Just wondering. ; P

  7. Fadra

    I suspected all along it was year-o although I often hear simple Euro or GY-ro (like a gyroscope) which phonetically makes sense.

    I’m just disappointed you didn’t ask how to pronounce the last name of those people with all the generosity.

  8. headbang8

    Yassou, Neil!

  9. Finn

    Hey, I knew that! I did, really. 🙂

  10. Loukia

    I TOLD YOU SO. God.

  11. Loukia

    (By that way, if you were EVER going to link to my blog in one of your posts, this would have been a perfect time to do so. Oh well. Hope you enjoyed your YEAR-O!)

  12. Camille

    YIANNI IN THE BOX! I want one!!

  13. Ellen B.

    The inside of Greek Churches are always gorgeous!! This one, included.
    Have you ever been inside St. Sophia’s in L.A.? If you ever come back, you must see it. It’s not far from Danny’s house!

  14. Kristine

    Of course it’s Year-o! You could have asked this English-German girl from the middle of Indiana and saved yourself a bunch of time. And, now I’m really craving a Year-o, but live in the middle of nowhere. Thanks.

  15. Juli Ryan

    OK, but what is the difference between a Year-O and a kebab? Not to mention a shawarma…

    Yeah, thinking about this is making me hungry.

  16. Shieldmaiden1196

    You did EAT one, right? That’s the important question.
    I love me some Greek food.

  17. fizzgig

    year-o?i thought it was JI-RO.

    I was totally off!

  18. teahouseblossom

    I was told by a Greek friend that “Only Turks say jye-ro!” That statement was accompanied by eyes like daggers, warning me never to say it in the Turkish way in front of her.

  19. Deanna McNeil

    I loved this post 110%. So glad I had learned this pronunciation properly! Phew! And Neil? Your blog looks HAWT!!!!

  20. subWOW

    hey, nice pictures! esp. the last one! 🙂

    I was right. I have always been right! WOOHOO! Do you think 9 am is too early for YEAR-Os?

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