Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Like, that totally happened

Working at the library's public computers (because the internet adapter on this machine is finicky) next to 2 high school girls supposedly (supposably) studying but mostly berating each other for, like, being distracting.

Suddenly the one on my right turns to me (without salutation) and says "Do you know what the word subtell means?"

I narrow my eyes, clueless, "Show it?"  I said, because in the textspeak of the young, why use modifiers and other unneccessary baggage?  She does: subtle.  Oh.

I say, "Oh, subtle.  The B is silent, so you say 'suttle.'  It means... "  every word I can think of is a Latinate that is likely beyond the girl in the moment learning "subtle."  "It's like, played down, underhanded -- well, not underhanded, in a sneaky way... But if you say, 'that was subtle,' you mean it was---"

"On the DL," she says.

"Yes!"  I say, actually poking her like some crazy kickball coach.  It occurs to me she knows the word; she's never seen it.

I had that same problem with epitome when I was her age.


  1. LOL! Like, that's like, totally janky.

  2. OMG srsly? I had the same trouble with epitome AND I WAS TWENTY-FOUR. That is a true story. Discuss.

    No - wait. Don't.

  3. in high school, a dude was giving a speech for a student council thing and he pronounced it "ep-i-tome". obviously didn't write his own speech. he lost the election. :)

  4. And back in the day before SATs and ACTs when I took "placement tests" I missed that word in the question about meaning AND pronounciation. Got into college anyway as well as advanced English! M.

  5. Mine was facetiousness. I missed it on the SAT but it was a word my dad used all the time.


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