I still can't get over the way people say High-LANDS like it's 2 separate words - with emphasis on the LANDS.
I always say it like one word - with emphasis on the first syllable. Highlands.
Guess it makes life interesting.
Anyone who has lived here for a long time knows our town is simply "Highlands." Where the confusion came about was when people referred to both Highlands and Atlantic Highlands together, as "The Highlands," which is really a geographic name. When I hear "The Highlands," I get annoyed, too, because it means the speaker is ignorant and, to my mind, a bit disrespectful, i.e, can bother to get the name right. Similarly, I am incensed each time I hear "Jersey" uttered...this is definitely a New York belittling of our state that has become a trend. We don't hear "York" or "Hampshire" or (worse yet) "Mexico!"