2011 Dictionary of Slang: Bay Area Edition

2011 Dictionary of Slang: Bay Area Edition

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Editor’s Note: The following is a list of slang terminology known to be used in California’s San Francisco Bay Area, and fictionalized scenarios that demonstrate how these terms are used in speech. Nikita George, 23, Dominique Dismuke, 24 and Elisa Gonzalez,18, are content producers at New America Media. 


active, to get - to have a lot of fun; to be rambunctious
bars - skills driving a vehicle (e.g. to weave through traffic safely)
blurped - pulled over
boom - an emphatic end to a sentence meant to cut someone off or brush someone off rudely
brand new - a change of mood all of a sudden
come up, to - to steal; to find something of value
deuces - goodbye (derived from someone giving the peace sign)
finna - about to do something
flip, to - to rob
guap (also: chedda) - money
heartbeat - loved one
hot, to be - to attract unwanted attention; to be obvious
hurt - ugly
mainy, to act - to act crazy
mouthpiece, to have - the ability to say all the right things to someone to convince them
murked (also: popped, clapped) - killed
O.D. - over due; above and beyond what is necessary
posted, to be - to be hanging out; to be loitering
right in my backyard - in someone’s business that doesn’t concern you
smashed, to be - to drive fast and recklessly
spit, to - to engage someone in conversation with the intent of acquiring their phone number
swoop, to - to get picked up and/or pick someone up in a car
to take a bus ride - to go to jail
to take it to the grave - to keep a secret and never tell anyone
telly - hotel room
twerk, to - to dance sexually
wet - attractive; pretty; good looking

Words in Use

Scenario #1: Two guys debate over whether or not a girl is attractive.
Jamal: That girl over there wet!
Dante: She hella hurt! She can twerk but since you think she wet then go spit at her.
Jamal: I got mouthpiece! I bet I get her number.
Dante: Hurry up ‘cause Calvin finna come swoop!

Scenario #2: Best friends meeting up for lunch.
Ashley: Wassup heartbeat!
Michelle: Wassup girl?! Girl, guess what happened? Jared got murked!
Ashley: For real, Jared? How that happen?
Michelle: He was posted on 3rd, but I guess yesterday he came up on a lotta guap from dude around the corner – he always jacks people for chedda so this time he got clapped! Don’t tell anybody I told you.
Ashley: Okay girl I’m gonna take it to the grave! Wow. Whoever flipped him finna take a bus ride.

Scenario #3: Two girls discuss an old friend who they rarely talk to anymore.
Monique: Who was that girl all in my back yard?
Shayla: That’s Cayla cousin! She was actin’ brand new like she couldn’t come speak.
Monique: Girl, I know? And did you see her outfit? Where they do that at?!
Shayla: Girl, yes! She was lookin’ like a hot mess!

Scenario #4: Two boys in a car talking.
Marcus: We finna be late, lets smash to the telly.
Julius: Don’t act main. I ain’t tryna be hot and get blurped.
Marcus: Chill, I got bars! We finna get active in that telly!

Scenario #5: A boy makes a girl mad.
James: Where you get that shirt from? I like that.
Robin: Why?
James: I bet it would look better on my girlfriend.
Robin: No, it looks good on me! So BOOM!
James: Why you get so angry? That’s O.D.
Robin: I'm out! Deuces.