Tuesday, June 10, 2003

'Step Up Bitch'

As I've declared in the past, I get letters! -- and I'm not ashamed to post them. This Silentio reader was drunk and pissed off (apparently at me, though he can no longer remember why) why he sent me this missive:

You have made more than one enemy you fucker. Come into town and don't even look at me wrong punk ass motherfucker. You have owned up and became your own man and that is fine, I respect that more than you being a pussy hiding behind what you think you have learned. Step up bitch!

One can never credit our little community here of not having a little spunk, eh? My first reaction was ... well, the first reaction was one of vague fright, because I know the emailer and he is quite a bit bigger than I. My second reaction was one of confusion. I wasn't bewildered by what I might've done or said to upset this person, because I say and do such things to a variety of person on a near-daily basis, mostly by accident. No no, I was curious about the phrase 'Step up bitch.' Was this some kind of new aerobic activity, I wondered. No, don't be silly, Brad, my thoughts continued, this is 'lingo' -- hip teen, vaguely ghetto, lingo even. Obviously, not only can one not say our little community here lacks spunk, one cannot deny that they are in the know about such things. Bless all your g-lovin' hearts! As for me, my only rap album, if you ignore the mid-80s / early-90s stuff by the likes of The Beastie Boys and A Tribe Called Quest is a two-year-old Eminem CD, which I own by proxy, via Katrien, and I would venture a guess that most of his plangent neologisms are pretty old by now. (I know it's not really slang or anything, but I've always been taken by the Wilderesque quip, 'Bleed, Bitch, bleeeeeeed . . . bleeeeeeed.') Just a guess -- don't come after me, Slim Shady.

It's times like these that one can be thankful for The Source for Youth Ministry, specifically their glossary of Teen Lingo. Faint-hearted youth ministers beware, the site warns:

This teen lingo represents today's culture and many of the problems that go along with it. Although much of it is humorous, a good portion of it is very offensive. Many of the words are terms for sexual activity and drug use. Many of the examples given are common quotes from youth today- these quotes, although somewhat edited, can be foul or vile (sadly, all the below phrases can be said in a PG movie). I believe this dictionary has educational value in helping youth workers understand teen mentality and culture, but please do use discretion.

Indeed, Mr. Source for Youth Ministry. I found myself both scandalized and educated -- a pedagogical method to be admired, I think we can all agree. Take a gander, paying especial attention to the definitions:

  • deebo: To steal. See "jack." Derived from the character in the movie "Friday", who steals from all of the neighborhood people. "I'm gonna deebo Mom's credit card."

  • five on it: Term used to imply that the person either has a nickel bag of weed to contribute, or is willing to pitch in 5 dollars toward the purchase of marijuana.
  • given up the gold: When a female gives up her virginity before the right time, usually before marriage. "Girl, why you given up the gold . . . you gonna be bankrupt later!"
  • High-five: HIV "Homey got the High-five from the skanch queen"

You get the idea, I'm sure. But I'd be remiss if I didn't add two more -- my favourites -- before I finish off my wine and get back to work:

  • I'll bust a cap in your #$&?!! (posterior): To shoot someone (not necessarily just in the gluteus maximus). "Man, you best stop mad dawging me or I'll bust a cap in your #$&?!!"
  • in the house: Not in an actual house but at a present gathering or location. "My man Will’s in da house!"

To invoke Eminem again, to prove that I'm 'off the heazy', and maybe even slightly 'off your rector' (which, now that I look at it, seems kind of dirty): 'Snap back to reality, oh there goes gravity'. In other words, methinks (and partly hopes -- as long as I get to see it in action) youth ministers, if they actually try using teenspeak for proselytising purposes, may very well achieve levels of geekiness hitherto completely unknown.