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Monday, June 20, 2011



My youngest child, Spencer, just turned 13.  I now need to relearn teen speak vocabulary.  It seems some teen speak has not changed, some has, and for some I need an interpreter. 
I know teen speak from the 60’s, it was my language of choice.
I know teen speak from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. I was forced to learn in able to understand my other three children, Marybeth (I won’t say), Mike 37, and Matt 34.
I have to relearn today’s teen speak.  Here is what I think I know:
LIKE – I do not believe this has changed much from the 50’s and 60’s when it first became prominent.  Apparently metaphors are too hard for teens, so everything becomes a simile.  The beatniks of the 50’s started it.  Maynard G. Krebs of “The Many Loves of Doby Gillis” made it popular, and Shaggy from “Scooby Doo” perpetuated it. 
Why say “I was walking to school…..” when “Like I was walking to school…..” sounds so much more intelligent? 
I like, like to count how many, times, like teenagers like say like.  I know they like to say like, like a lot! 
YOU KNOW – Not much changed from the 60’s when this became common vernacular.  It is used to confirm the listener is paying attention.
“Like I was walking to school, you know…” “You know?” 
“Uh huh, like yup, I know.”
REALLY? – This is a new one.  It replaces “Hit the right” of my day, “No way,” “Get out,” of the 70’s, “Get the fuck out,” of the 80’s, and “Shut up!” of the 90’s.  All are used to confirm that what you just heard is what happened.
“Like I was walking to school, you know and I ran into Lamont…” “You know?”
“Hit the right you ran into Lamont” 1961
“Get out, no way you ran into Lamont” 1972
“Get the fuck out you ran into Lamont” 1984
“You ran into Lamont?  SHUT UP!” 1990
“You ran into Lamont?  Really?”
ITE – Not sure about this one.  I think it replaces “alright” and is used instead of “you know.” It seems to be used in repetition for no reason at all.
“Ite, like I was walking to school, you know ite…”
ACTUALLY – The meaning has not changed, however it is used when not needed in an attempt to accentuate the obvious.
“Ite, like I was actually walking to school, you know ite…”
AWESOME and EPIC - These mean the same thing, I think.  They replace cool, neat, groovy, and quite possibly 23 skidoo.  Do not use these words ever!  Do you remember when your Mom first said “Groovy?”
“Ite, like I was actually having this awesome walk to school, it was epic you know, ite…”
BLING – Anything shiny or fancy, usually jewelry.  Replaces…ah……..hmmm; I don’t think teens ever had shiny fancy jewelry.  I remember “fancy stuff” in the 80’s and 90’s and later “shiny shit”.  I’m pretty sure bling refers to stuff that is new to teens.
“Ite, like I was actually like having this awesome walk to school, wearing my bling, it was like epic you know, ite…”
As if it isn’t hard enough keeping up with the language changes, teens now have a completely new form of communication used in text messaging.  I have not yet decoded this format; I think I have the major acronyms figured out.
LOL – Lots of luck.
WTF – Why the face?
LMAO – Left my APPLE (computer) on.
LMFAO – Left my favorite APPLE on.
BFF – Bad foot fungus.
OMG- Only my gramps!
ILIWALHTAWTS - Ite, like I was actually like having this awesome walk to school…
There is still a whole lot I have yet to figure out.  If any teens would like to like help me out with this it would like be awesome.  I might even like you know, cough up some coin so you could like get some bling.  Ite?
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  1. thank you for the laugh. it made my day =)

  2. Really? Came from Austin Powers movies. Really? Are you serious? Exsqueeze me?