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A brief guide to Bay Area Slang

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AUGUST 25, 2017

Freshmen and transfers, welcome to a place like no other. Berkeley sits right in the heart of the Bay Area, otherwise known as the Yay Area, better known as The Land Where We Swing our Cars.

As someone who has lived in the Bay my entire life, I can personally attest to the fact that we do things a little different out here, and there is no aspect of day-to-day life where that is more apparent than slang.

I’ve received more than enough blank stares in my life upon uttering a word or phrase to know that there is a lot of vernacular that’s particular to the Bay Area. So for those of you who aren’t from the Yay, allow me to walk you through a handful of the words and phrases you may hear. We’ll start off simple and work our way up.

Hella (noun, adjective, adverb): Really; very; a lot of.
There are hella freshmen walking around campus right now.

Yadadamean: Short for “Do you know what I mean?” Other variations of this word include “yadadaimsayin” (“Do you know what I’m saying?”). “Yadada” is the shortened version.
The Bay Area has its own slang, yadadamean?

The City & The Town (noun): San Francisco and Oakland.
To get from The City to The Town, you have to cross the Bay Bridge or take BART.

Hyphy: Hyperactive; going crazy.
We were getting hyphy at the party last night.

Tryna (verb): “Trying to.”
“You tryna go to Crossroads later?”

Yee (exclamation): a) Yes; b) A sound more than a word; used to call someone, typically in a high-pitched voice.
“You tryna go to Crossroads later?”

*Sees friend across the street*

Finna (verb): “Going to” or “fixing to.”
I’m finna head to the gym later.

Juiced (verb): Excited.
I just passed my midterm, I’m hella juiced.

Slap(s): a) A song that sounds good; b) Used to say a song sounds good
This Mac Dre song is a slap.
This Mac Dre song slaps.

Dip (verb): To leave.
Class starts in 30 minutes, so I’m about to dip.

Giggin’ (verb): To dance.
The entire party was giggin’ last night when Mac Dre came on.

Joog (verb): To get something for cheap.
The original price was $30, but my friend jooged it, and I got it for $15.

Fo the f: For free.
Costco always gives out hella samples fo the f.

Cop (verb): To buy.
I finally copped some Superstars over the weekend.

Whip (noun): A car.
I have my whip for the weekend, let’s ride out.

Good look: A shortened way of saying “good looking out.”

“You have an extra pencil?”
“Yeah, I gotchu.”
“Good look.”

Swoop (verb): To pick someone up.
“I’m at the RSF and I’m hella tired, can you come swoop?”

Jawsin’ (verb): To lie.

This dude next to me said he passed his test while drunk, but I know he’s jawsin’.

Outta pocket: To act out of line or in a ridiculous manner.

“These freshmen are really trying to argue with the professors.”

“They hella outta pocket.”

Ghost ride (verb): Hopping out of a car while it’s in motion and dancing around it.

“When you get a new car, and ya feeling like a star, what you gon don? Ghost ride it!”
— Mistah F.A.B.

Purpin’ (verb): To lie.
Quit purpin’, we don’t have a test today.

On Mamas or On Citas: To promise. The eqivalent of saying, “I swear on my mom.”
I’m going to get an A on this test, on mamas.

Contact Justice delos Santos at [email protected].

JANUARY 28, 2019