Hall 1101-351

Carlton Nicholson 10/29/18

Research paper
Word choice:Yerrrrr
Professor Dr Carrie Hall
English 1101

Yerrrrrrrr, whats’s good bro? In your head you will immediately think what was just said. Was it even proper English? That’s a total normal response by the way. Especially when you have no idea what the other person might have attempted to say. “Yerrrrrr” isn’t in your typical dictionary. However, like many other slang words, you can find it in your urban dictionary. If your familiar with New York than you probably hear “yerrrrrr” before and perhaps you may even know what it means

So what does “yerrrrr” mean? First of all, there are several meaning for it. “Yerrr” means one thing while “Yerrrrrrrr” means another. It can get very confusing at times. Therefore, you should pay attention the tone the word is said in and the duration in which the word is help. I understand that it isn’t typical for slang to have so many guidelines for the proper use of it. However, slang words are words too at the end of the day and they should be seen that way as well.

The word “yerrr” is native to the newyork and newjerey area. Urban dictionary.com defines yerrr as a greeting to friend that is usually used in the New Jersey and Newyork area. Usually when it is said, others scream it back louder in response. It is similar to Marco Polo in a sense. “Yerrr functions as a sort of call and response for the newyork area. It is not just limited to the newyork area. However is has been recognized as “Newyork slang” from those who are from different places.
Personally I would say the word “yerrrr” is more native to Newyork. You can make the argument that it is found in many other places. However, it is unlikely you’ll hear it outside of the New York and New Jersey area. The isn’t actually the most popular of “Newyork Slang”. (Vim.com/philochko) claims the most popular to be “mad”, “yo” and “tight”. “Yerrrr” is none of the most popular words. It wouldn’t be crazy if nobody from Newyork realized it was Newyork slang. This is probably of the result of the world still being fairly new. I started to hear the word my sophomore year of high school. I am now a college freshmen now and it still hasn’t taken the city by storm. However, like most other things, you can either ride the wave or miss it. I could see the word “yerrrrr” being used by a lot more people in the coming years.
Junot Díaz’s “Fuku” speaks of the supernatural. I personally feel the main purpose the author was trying to achieve was bringing us to a point where we might believe in the existence of “Fuku”. He even goes into detail about how it was related to John F. Kennedy’s assassination. The word itself has a culture specific meaning. This is similar too much of slang. Slang has different meanings across the world. However, when you focus on one specific part of slang, you focus on one specific community. Each community is going to have their own individual thing. This is one of the main reasons every person is unique in their own way. “Fuku” is has it own community while the word “yerrr” has its own community as well. It may not be easy for every word to be recognized outside of the community. The English language doesn’t recognize every word either. Some words are just limited to the community that they originated from. That is the purpose of some community specific words. There are some words that should be universal. Such as the words “yes” or “no”. However, there are several ways to just say those two words alone. Therefore, I feel as if we have come to the point where we’re not focused on being universal all the time. We are focused on making ourselves comfortable in our own separate communities. There are reasons that people from queens and people from Brooklyn might have some differences when it comes to the way that they are talking. However, they are both from New York. It is inevitable that they will be some similarities between the two in the way they might speak to each other. It is impressive that we could have communities within communities and that’s what “yerrrr” signifies in a way. “Yerrr” is English, Newyork, and Queens slang all in one. It is just one word at the end of the day. But one word could carry so many different meanings and we might have trouble keeping track of those meanings from time to time. That is a reason why it is so easy to offend some people when we might use slang. We don’t know if they might take it a different day or not. Slang is something that is native to the language that it is spoken in.

English slang is obscure. (A Dictionary of Slang, Jargon & Cant). They are many people that just look down upon slang of any kind. However slang has a specific purpose in society. The word“yerrrr” sets apart a group of people and brings them together. At the same time it divides people who aren’t familiar with the slang in the first place. I’m some ways it can be seen as a double edge sword. However, slang words tend to be a way of bringing together a community of people. This isn’t always intentional. It can offend people if it is used about other people or outside a group of people who know each other well. (https://dictionary.cambridge.org/grammar/british-grammar/types-of-english-formal-informal-etc/slang).

“Newyork slang” is something that has evolved ten times over. The words we may be comfortable using today, could be out dated in a matter of the span of a few years. Some things that were cool in 2006 are no longer cool in today society. Our society is constantly changing each day to incorporate and eliminate so many different things. We have the option to either adapt with the times or leave things alone. There is a possibility I could be 90 years old and screaming “yerrrr” when I see an old childhood friend. Therefore, my children and the rest of kids might think I need to get with times. Honestly I feel like the most important thing when it comes to slang is just feel comfortable. After all, that’s one of the primary purposes of slang to begin with.











  1. Bibliography
    • Urban dictionary.com
    • Dictionary.com
    • Vicki.com/philochko
    • Dictionary of slang, jargon and Cant (1889)
    • https://www.thenation.com/article/fukuacute-americanus/