Dere wz a point of tym wen i neva stukk to propr grmmar rulz n i chattd lyk dis. Many of my friends were, and still are, used to chatting that way. Of course, now it hurts me to miss a comma. Call me condescending.
Two to three years ago, when I first forayed into the online worlds of MSN, Facebook, and the like, I, like most young teenagers, wanted more than anything to fit in. I remember doing ridiculous things like posing for pictures, with the camera on self-timer, trying to look as ‘cool’ and ‘hip’ as I possibly could, which wasn’t remarkably too much so. I’d then hurriedly upload those pics on Facebook and wait for comments (which I rarely got).
I remember how I used to chat with my friends too.
‘Krishna says: Waazzaaaaa dude!’
The shame. “Waaazzzzaaaaa”. Number of ‘a’s and ‘z’s proportional to the enthusiasm or boredom, whichever was concerned.
I remember this one time I tried to look cool: I typed, “It rocked!” I realized it didn’t sound cool enough. So I changed the “It rocked!” to “It rockeddd!!!” Then, I went and made it “it rockeddd!!!” (Notice the capital ‘I’ is gone.) After backspacing and editing, I ended up with a reasonably cool, “it rokkkddd!!!”.
Like I said, the shame. I wish I had a time machine to go back in time and stop myself from being so incredulously wannabe (Today, I still am, but at least not regarding internet lingo.)
Apart from the misspellings, there was the ‘LOL – OMG’ thing. And ROTFL later. LMAO. ROTFLMAO. Sigh. I would be lying if I said I didn’t use ‘LOL’. I still do. But I feel this odd sort of guilt after using it… I mean, think about it: How many of you are actually laughing out loud when you say ‘LOL’? I feel ‘LOL’ is being abused. Everyone says it for everything. It used to be a substitute for laughter, but now it’s just a meaningless triad of letters. ‘LOL’ could mean, “Haha! That joke was funny!”. It could also mean, “I’m not really listening to you, but you don’t know that do you? Haha.” I’ve always felt using these chat-speak short forms reduces the clarity of your communication. But they’re big time-savers. Maybe I should start using them to save as much time as possible so I have more to waste.
While I’ve been able to erase all traces of those things I used to do (Yes, I’ve even gone and deleted all those Facebook pictures), there’s still one skeleton in the closet, or rather hanging around my neck. My e-mail id, made in the good old wannabe days, goes, ‘krishna_niceguy@…’. See that? ‘Niceguy’. No, that wasn’t a reference to ‘No more Mr. Nice Guy’ or anything like that. I made my id that way just so people would think I was a plain, nice guy. Maybe my brain was still in its early stages. Maybe it still is.
I haven’t changed my e-mail id since, always felt it too much of trouble to do so. My friends and I have hearty laughs every time we see those glaring words ‘niceguy’ placed in my e-mail id. Their e-mail ids were laugh-out-loud hilarious too, but they’ve all taken the pains to change theirs. I remember one ‘gangsta’ and one ‘cooldude’ and one ‘rockzz’ and one God-knows-what-else.
I’ve seen the effect of the internet language of short forms and misspellings influence people’s daily lives. For example: students writing ‘tym’ instead of ‘time’ in English exams and such other things. I’m glad I quit it. I don’t know why I stopped writing that way. I guess it was my all-too-early exposure to the great writing of Roger Ebert, or maybe my all-too-late stumbling upon classics of children’s literature. (I was eight when I discovered it was ‘Enid Bylton’ and not ‘Gnid Blwton’ like I thought it was from her signature on her books)
Whenever I look at what I’ve recently written, I am consumed by a pompous sense of pride; like I’ve climbed some kind of personal ladder by trying my best to adhere to rules of grammar and punctuation. Sure, at times, I appear condescending or patronizing, saying, “Oh well, nothing much, really,” when my friends ask me, “Waaaaazzzzzzaaaa duddeeee!??” But so what? Hu carez kool dude? Lollz.
(Note to reader: I am truly sorry if I’ve offended anyone out there who chats in da kool internet way. Srryy dudes. No offense, k? Tc. Hf. Ttyl. 🙂 )
Cynimatik jkass syning off! 😀 Cinematic Jackass, signing off! 😀
omg = oh my god
lol = laugh out loud
wtf = what the funk, fish, fudge… nah, kidding, you know. 🙂
wth = what the hell
rofl = rolling on floor laughing
lmao = laughing my ass off
ttyl = talk to you later
imho = in my humble opinion
idk = i don’t know
idc = i don’t care
idr = i don’t remember
jk = just kidding
r = are
u = you
…and so on