Monday, August 29, 2011

It Wuz Boss, Not L7!

Y'know, the Sixties weren't just about fantastic music, peace movements, wild clothes and a war we'll never forget. For many teens and above, there were certain drop-words that made you hip (now that we're old[er], "hip" doesn't mean "cool", but a certain nagging point of arthritis). Some examples:

1. "Fab" was formerly the name of a laundry detergent. When the Beatles appeared with their British slang, it became the faddish abbreviation for "fabulous." Here in 2011, it's the name of a laundry detergent again.
2. "Gear" once meant something that helped machinery work. In a way, it meant the same thing in rock: if something was "gear," it meant it was "groovily happening." Today, it means the same thing it did at the first.
3. "Groovy" was a term used to describe the surface of LPs and 45s. Then it became our equivalent of "cool." Today, who knows what it means??
4. "In" and "Out". Either you were accepted into a certain crowd or not. Today, just a door sign ... or directions disregarded by Congress.
5. "Uptight". If you were "stressed out" (millennium phrase) about something, you were "uptight".
6. "L7" was one of the most cryptic, and didn't really catch on in the Sixties (originally used by the Greenwich Village crowd back in the '50s) until Sam the Sham's "Hattie" warned "Mattie" not to be that way, but learn to dance in "Wooly Bully". If you put an "L" and a block-print "7" together, you've got ... a SQUARE!
7. "Outtasight" -- a word supposedly derived from the space program -- meant the same as today's "awesome" or "off-the-charts." The best of the best.
8. "Boss" -- one of the boss's (Uncle LL's) fave words. Same description as #7.
9. "Chick" -- okay, this one's been around for ages, and was inspired by W.C. Fields' My Little Chickadee. Meant "lovely, vivacious girl".
10. Now, there are others that I probably missed out on, and if anyone remembers others, give me a shout-out.

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