We live in a world of cyberslang, internet acronyms, and a whole generation of youth who communicate via abbreviations, meme’s and emoji’s. Somewhere along the way, a new language emerged, full of LOL, BRB and YOLO. Nothing makes me feel older than having to ask my teenage son what a group of seemingly nonsensical letters means.
I have news though… that generation is not the only one with a secret language. We R.W.’s of a certain age have our own particular ways of communicating. We have a deep understanding of each other’s daily challenges, and have our own code phrases and words that we use as a form of support and commiseration. My BFFs and I have developed a few key idioms which if overheard may not make sense to our male counterparts. But we get it.
In the spirit of partial disclosure, I will share a few examples of our lingo here, which will sound quite familiar to just about any other R.W.. Some day, however, our dialect could become as rampant as Textese, and at that point, the men and youth in our lives will need a dictionary to keep up:
PC: Translation: Plot Change! Use: During a conversation, random thoughts or loss of words will create a diversion in the original direction of the discussion. Rather than stumble with apologies in losing track of what was being said, simply declare PC! and move on. This is also a handy reference for all of the twists and turns we encounter every day in our busy lives and our sudden need to adapt to new issues and emergencies.
WLTSL: Translation: We Live The Same Life. Use: When texting to find out if a R.W. friend needs anything while you are out running errands, and you find out she has also just done the exact same stops at the pharmacy, grocery store, and Target. OR, you find out another R.W. is playing a similarly rabid game of beat the clock and you run into each other while ordering take out because there was just no time to make a real dinner.
INE: Translation: It Never Ends. Use: Somewhat related to WLTSL, INE represents the never-ending crisis management, personal calamities and time pressures we cope with. This is most widely used in reference to ongoing family emergencies and issues, like when caring for an elderly or disabled loved one, or having teenagers in the house.
WTEBAD: Translation: Will There Ever Be A Day. Use: When commiserating and venting, while wishfully looking toward the mystical future when everything will be easier. Examples: Will There Ever Be A Day when we aren’t tired? Will There Ever Be A Day when I’m not double-booked? Will There Ever Be A Day when we can be ladies who lunch?
ASA: Translation: Another Sign of Age. Use: When finding a new wrinkle or grey hair while looking in the mirror on a given morning, or trying to stand up after sitting for an extended period of time to discover your knees and back have seized up. Frequently followed by GOS: Getting Old Sucks.
And, finally, my favorite:
USM: Translation: You Slay Me. Use: When another R.W. has you laughing so hard you are glad to have worn a panty liner, or she has amazed you with some quirky behavior or idea that you are too shy to commit yourself. Variations include That Slays Me, and I Slay Me. Because after all, even with our challenges and craziness, life is funny. And sometimes we just crack ourselves up.