Thursday, May 24, 2012

I'm Bad

A couple of years ago, one of my students was eating a burrito. The student looked like she was enjoying the burrito, but then she exclaimed, “This burrito is dank!”

I was kind of confused. Why did this student look so content if her burrito was unpleasantly moist?
Upon further inquiry, I learned that dank was the new bad. Remember back in the ‘80s when bad meant both “bad” and “good”? Dank, too, can mean both. 

(I also learned that nothing makes you feel older than not knowing what “kids these days” are talking about and realizing that the slang you’re familiar with is circa "gag me with a spoon.") 

I was reminded of my "dank" experience when I read the hilarious blog post from my critique partner and fellow English instructor, Holly Vance. Her post was about her confusion regarding her students’ use of the word smashed. She didn’t know if her students were talking about getting drunk, laid, or owned. 

All I can say is thank god we have i.e.

I.e. is an abbreviation of a Latin phrase that basically translates to “in other words.” It’s used for clarification.
Therefore, this is what my student SHOULD HAVE said to achieve maximum clarity: 

This burrito is dank (i.e., awesome)!

Sometimes we confuse i.e. and e.g. However, don’t confuse them. That would be totally dank. And I don’t mean in a good way. I.e. means “in other words,” and e.g. means “for example.”  

This weekend, I am going to get smashed (i.e., drunk).
*I am clarifying what I mean by smashed.

I’ve been known to have quite an eclectic palate for alcohol (i.e., I’ll drink anything).
*I am clarifying what I mean by “eclectic pallet.”

I am going to go to the liquor store after work to get some of my favorites (e.g., Zima, Boone’s Strawberry Hill, and Manischewitz).
*I am providing examples of a few of my faves (but I’ll drink anything).

Because I am sophisticated, I like to add a garnish to my Zima (e.g., a lime wedge or a tiny umbrella).
*I am providing examples of garnishes.

I hope you have a dank weekend! I hope it’s really bad!

23 comments:

Shelly said...

I love to regale my teenage daughter and her friends with faux hip words I just make up. They look at me with a mix of confusion, skepticism, and a little awe, because they sound real enough to be super cool (i.e. rad, really great).

Jono said...

I get it, but shouldn't pallet be palate (i.e. the roof of the mouth or sense of taste)?

Janet Johnson said...

This post is dank! (i.e. totally awesome). I did not know that was the new word. Good to know. :)

Missed Periods said...

Jono, Yes. Oops.I changed it. Thanks.

Shannon said...

This. This is hilarious. I once dated a younger guy, and when he told me that my Buddha cup sitting on my kitchen shelf was "tight", I thought he was telling me there wasn't enough room on the shelf for it. He never called me back. Huh.

Mark said...

I think my weekend has a chance of being decent actually. I'm still young, ish, and I can't keep up with the lingo these days sometimes, but I wasn't aware that people mixed up i.e and e.g. I guess you really do learn something new every day, even if it's that other people need to learn.

Rachael said...

I had the same problem when I was teaching, and I was only a few years older than my students! Now I'm an editor instead of a teacher, and I have to correct i.e./e.g. in documents written by lawyers all the time.

Janette Dolores said...

Brilliant intro to the proper use of i.e.

I must also add that I will now be walking around my house saying, "Ayyy..." periodically because of the Fonzie pic in this post.

Smooches!

Jo-Ann said...

It wasn't just a dank post, it was totally sick!

Jaya J said...

thanks ! i always get i.e and e.g confused :)

Terra Shield said...

Urban dictionary is the best place to ensure that you're always young at heart!

Brent Wescott said...

I assume from these examples that your students are older than mine. I don't think I could use these in high school.:)

the late phoenix said...

i was gonna get smashed (i.e. loved hard) this weekend by my special friend (i.e. "special friend"), but when she saw that i drink Zima, it was called off (i.e. unfriended).

Winkler's best role: Childrens Hospital

Mike Mike said...

Thanks for the laugh and the lessons as always Prof! I really wasn't sure how to use ie or eg. I have a boss at work who tries to be younger than he is and always uses the term "diesel" - my younger peers seem to get that it means really intense. No freaking clue on my end. I guess I'm from the "far out!" era or peace and love baby. Dank is good? I give up. R.I.P. :-)

Mary Aalgaard, Play off the Page said...

Funny. I grew up in that "gag me" era. I can still slip into sarcasm, which really confused the exchange students.

Play off the Page

Holly Vance said...

Thanks Jenny for the shout-out. And to all you commentators, I actually have a definition on Urban Dictionary. Ha!

Talli Roland said...

Dank? DANK? Haha! Who knew...

Theresa Milstein said...

I hadn't heard dank. Spending time with kids and teens usually keeps me up on the all the cool/hip/rad/phat/groovy words. I feel old too.

Another fun way to teach a grammar lesson. Where were you in high school?

Your favorite alcohol choices are interesting...

Lynda R Young said...

Yup, I'd heard of dank before, but I remember the first time I'd heard a younger person refer to something good as 'tidy' eg this burrito is tidy. You'd never guess they thought tidy was good if you saw their rooms ;)

sundersartwork said...

Each generation changes language, rad is coming back now though. In England they say 'yeah' after everything now. 'Im gonna have a cup of tea yeah, then a fag yeah'. Talk about an approval disorder, they sound like a panting dog. Eclectic palate made me laugh. Your posts are always funny and educational.Its the jubilee here so the weekend is dank.

anthony stemke said...

Never heard of "dank" but have drank all the alcohols you mentioned plus Kalani wine.

anthony stemke said...

Never heard of "dank" but have drank all the alcohols you mentioned plus Kalani wine.

Sara said...

Thanks for the reminder on the difference between "i.e." and "e.g."

Agree - nothing makes me feel older than hearing "kids these days" use slang. Recent example:
Kid: Hey, anybody eva' hate on you?
Me: {startled} Excuse me? Oh. Um. Why yes, in my time, guys used to hit on me. {Well, sometimes they did!}
Kid: No. HATE on you! HATE on you!
Me: (wondering to self) how would anyone hate ON me?