Demonstrating conclusively that they are desperate for anything even
remotely resembling news, “Dateline NBC” ran a segment on
“mallspeak.” I didn’t see all of it, but it was apparently about the
vocabulary that teenagers use today. I decided to compare that with the
terms we used as kids. So I checked into a teen chat room on AOL to see
what is hip today.
I was able to tolerate it for about 45 seconds. In that time, I learned
that “all my peeps” means “all my friends.”
“911S” means “sibling alert”; and “P911”
means “parent alert.” Of course, I already knew that
“LOL” means “laugh out loud”; and several months ago, many
boomers informed me that “ROTFL” means “rolling on the
floor laughing.” With that lead, it does not take much
extrapolation then to figure out what “LMAO” means. But
“we won’t go there” – not here at BBHQ.
That is “cyberspeak” – the abbreviated acronyms of the Internet. Cute,
but not particularly interesting to me. While listening to some teens at
a nearby mall, I was able to conclude that “homies in the hood” has
crossed over racial boundaries. I think Bart Simpson gave us “chill
out,” and “rad, man”; but “Don’t have a cow, man” came long before Bart
Simpson was a wet ink spot on the drawing board.
Bart also uses the term “far out”; but he did not originate
it, nor did he make it mainstream. Back in the early 70s I think, John
Denver hosted “The Tonight Show” for a week or so. Apparently
it takes far more than songwriting skills to serve as an articulate host.
Every time John was excited or amazed, his eyes would open wide, and
he’d blurt out, “Far out!” Well, it did not take long
before the audience got ahead of him. Given just a short pause in the
dialog, the audience filled in the blanks: “Far out!”
Twenty-five years later he commented that that term still followed him
around. (Oh, the power of television! ... and boomers!)
To continue reading this essay, please join us as a member at BBHQ!
BBHQ Membership -- $9 Per Year -- Here's What You'll Get:
Access to hundreds of boomer stories about
boomers, growing up, growing older,
staying young, staying smart,
and remembering the good ol' days
18 books in the BBHQ Trivia Library
BBHQ’s Name That Tune quizzes
Who Said That?
What’s in a Number?
What’s in a Number? - R&R edition
The Name Game
The Boomer Movie Quiz
A BBHQ Time Capsule Report
Unlimited access to lyrics to over 750 songs
Search the title and artist of over 4,000 oldies
Search 750 song lyrics for a word or phrase
Print the boomer verbal collages -
(Home Page/60s/70s pages)
Access to other special features
The great comfort of knowing that you
have helped save us from financial
disaster. (We are too small to fail.)
$9 per year... come on!
We'll send you to PayPal.com to process your payment;
then, PayPal will send you back here as a new member.
Your payment will go through the secure, encrypted services of PayPal.com, the most trusted Internet payment system.
Hershel's kinda-like-a bio: