The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'slang'
Among the latest additions to the often irreverent slang used by doctors, as tracked by the British Medical Journal: a "Hasselhoff" is a patient who turns up in casualty "with an injury with a bizarre explanation", a Jack Bauer is a doctor who is still working after 24 hours on the job, and a Father Jack is a "confused, usually elderly patient whose constant high-pitched verbal ejaculation and attempts to get out of bed are responsible for insomnia on wards".
William Safire looks at current youth slang (via gths). Though I thought that "crunk" meant parent-scaringly extreme in an aggressively sexualised way, like one of the growing numbers of porn videos by rappers, rather than merely "crazy drunk". (And does anybody actually use "dropping the kids off at the pool"? It sounds about as contrived as "crimping off a length".)
And now, some answers to the timeless question of what does "fo' shizzle my nizzle" mean: (via MeFi)
Originated in medival England in the 17th century, this phrase has changed in meaning completely, from the orignal shorthand denotation of "Alas! An advasary has come upon us! To the catupults!" to the modern definition of "Please grease up my penis."
nah, ya'lls know dat dis chea' mean, "for sure my endearing African-American acquaintance".
Numerous commentators have pointed out that the phrase is considered offensive when used by white people. Though aren't most people who say "fo' shizzle my nizzle" white suburban kids in big yellow shorts?
A useful list of smutty phrases in French (cut out and keep in wallet or purse): (via MeFi)
English: "I don't give a shit!"
French: Je m'en bats les couilles
Literal translation: "I slap my balls against it!"
Not all that far away from "I unclog my nose towards you, sons of a window dresser!"
A NYTimes article about Verlan, a French argot spoken by immigrants and countercultural hipsters, in which words are arbitrarily reversed. I suppose it's sort of like a French equivalent of Palare, the English gay/carnival argot.
Thus the standard greeting "Bonjour, ça va?" or "Good day, how are you?" becomes "Jourbon, ça av?" "Une fête" (a party) has become "une teuf"; the word for woman or wife, femme, has become meuf; a café has become féca; and so on. The word Verlan itself is a Verlanization of the term l'envers, meaning "the reverse."
Originally a criminal argot in the 19th century, Verlan was adopted by second-generation immigrants after World War 2, and now by bourgeois trendies and rebellious teens. Perhaps not a small part of its countercultural appeal is going against the mainstream dogma of linguistic purism and sticking it to the Académie Française.
Ms. Lefkowitz explained: "There are now different kinds of Verlan. There is the Verlan of the original group, the working class immigrants from the banlieus. Then there is the Verlan of the urban professionals, bourgeois Verlan or `Verlan geoisbour.' There is also the Verlan of the teenagers who use it to distinguish themselves from the adult word as a game and a form of amusement."
More on high-school slang post-9/11, from a rather sarcastic website in Russia; also from them, 911 things to hate about America, from foreign policy to "Hot, blonde Mormon girls refuse to put out". I suspect this guy has a bee in his bonnet.. (via The Fix) "
US teen slang after the WTC attack. Attractive boys are "firefighter cute", petty concerns are "*sooo* Sept. 10", mean teachers are "terrorists", and weird kids (read: acceptable targets for bullying) are "Taliban". (via Reenhead)