Wednesday, December 27, 2006


I'm really puzzled by this word. I've been watching kids begin and end their sentences with it for years.

"Yo, that's too much homework, yo."

And they find it absolutely unacceptable when I respond in kind:

"Yo, it's hot in summer school, yo. And please call me Mister Yo."

Which they do a lot lately.

"Yo" is often accompanied by very particular gesticulations, which can be startling coming from a kid who just arrived from South Korea two months ago. I mean, how come he can learn that so easily while the whole subject-verb thing is like a foreign language? I know, it is a foreign language. But so is "yo," yo.

Now my 10-year-old daughter's getting on the whole "yo" thing, but she only uses it at the end of sentences.

"I finished my book report, yo."

"What about your math, yo?"

"Daddy, you can't say that. Only kids say yo."

I'm not going to tell her about using it in the beginning of sentences. She's gonna have to learn it on the street, like I did.
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