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My Chances Of Being Cool Just Went To Zero


There might have been a brief shiny moment in the 80’s when I was cool. Wait, no I’m wrong.  I’ve always had something that kept me from being cool.  I don’t know how to dress, how to look or how to give off that relaxed “f-it” attitude.  When I was kid I knew the proper lingo, but that’s about it.

I moved here when I was 16.  I came in from Orange County (home of the Offspring and a pretty good punk scene). I was surrounded by, but not fully immersed in, the surf culture. Me and most of my friends sounded like minor league versions of Spicolli from Fast Times At Ridgemont High.

Surfers have an odd way of talking, but there is some not-so-hidden intelligence there. Surfers really to like insert a bit of A+ vocabulary into a C- sentence.  For example Spicolli saying things are “most heinous”.  “Heinous” is a bit above what you’d think his thought pattern would be capable of.  Anyways, surfers will pick a word like “heinous’ and use it over and over again in every situation.

Here’s how this relates to the topic in hand. Whereas there was a time people would insert words to try to sound more intelligent than they are, now they insert stuff to make them sound dumber. As I was coming out of Wallyworld late Saturday I heard a typical sorority girl say something was going to be “cray”.  “Cray” is of course the short version of “Crazy” for people too cool to use two-syllable words.  I’m sorry Buffy, but “cray” doesn’t work for you.

I then dropped by Burger King and after waiting a few moments, the order person said, “sorry for the wait, my computer be freezin.”  Okay, so you’re smart enough to use a computer, but you still say “be freezin’?  Let’s also not forget that people now “axe” each other a question (or sumptin’).

Now please, don’t tell me that this is a culture or a cross-ethnic thing.  The people who are embracing this speech are exposed to teachers, television, radio, magazines and dozens of other forms of proper (or better) speech each day.

This isn’t the first time the ‘sounding dumb’ to fit in thing has happened. I’ve always hated the “youknow” people. These are people that use “youknow” as if it’s one word and in the middle and the end of every though. I actually saw a grown man, a coach, trying to talk about his team while saying ‘youknow’ about 50 times.

The point to all of this is, I’m dumb enough without working at it.  I would also like to point out to the ‘hip-hop’ culture, the minute silly little sorority girls say “cray”, you’re no longer cool and it’s time to move on to something else.  If I have to sound dumb to be cool, I’ll pass.

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