1101-391 Language and Identity.

Lansey Cerisier
Pro. Dr. Hall
English 1101

Why are you bugging out? “You Good?”

There are kids fighting in a distance, so much screaming and hollering. “BEAT THAT ASS SIS” or “NOBODY BETTER JUMP IN.”The typical events that happen in high school. After the fight is over a friend will usually ask their friend “you good ?”, and their respond back will be “yea I’m good”. It’s a weird way of asking someone if they’re okay but that’s just our way of talking. Born and raised in Brooklyn, slang is like our second language. Throughout the streets you hear “you good” from adults, teens and old people. Particularly Flatbush where I’m from, we say it mostly everyday. Depending on your tone and face expression the way you say the phrase changes the meaning. New Yorkers create different meanings of the words they use. When you’re from New York there’s different lingos that is picked up quick.
Why do people say “you good?” Instead of okay? My friends and I always say “you good” because I guess it’s more emphasis or we grew a habit of saying it. In many situations we use the phrase as a final thought.
Girl: Did you break the news ?
Best Friend: “Yes”, I can’t believe he’s cheating on me
Girl: “You good ?”
Best Friend: Hopefully
It has the meaning of “Are you doing okay?” and how are your handling the news you received. When having a heart to heart conversation our way of checking up on someone is asking “ you good?”.
We wouldn’t really use this slang with everyone. If my boss was bugging out I wouldn’t say “you good?” I’ll probably get fired or maybe terminated. At the moment it is what it is were just expressing what we want to say but can’t say it. When it comes to adults, professors or bosses it shows a sign of disrespect. Now I know every kid wishes to talk to any adult figure like this but I do agree it comes off rude. Our generation today expands the language of slang. You could say it’s a secret code us kids and teens use to communicate with each other. There’s so much more words that have been used as brick, litt, mad, tight, cap, word to who and etc. But “you good?” seems to be used the most.
Although this is said in my borough I always wanted to know who starting to say it from the jump. Maybe the phrase had one meaning and overtime we developed more. First place I heard it was Brooklyn but now a days not only do you hear it in New York but lots of other states. Down south “you good?” Is used more aggressive then how us New Yorkers use it in a sympathetic way. You may think did this phrase actually come from New York, well it did. People all over the world have admired, copied, and evolved their own version of the language. New York being it’s birthplace we put our own spin and style to the phrase. By hearing the way I talk you’ll know off the bat I’m from Brooklyn. We talk loud ,aggressive, sometimes sarcastic usually saying “you good?” in those tones. Speaking the way we do it’s our tradition you could say. I grew up with this phrase and not using it or having it in my vocabulary, loses the purpose of using it.
You know you’re not a real New Yorker if you never heard or used “you good?”, like are you living under a rock?. We started all these crazy slang words that we say everyday. If this phrase was said to a stranger they’ll probably scrunch their face and look at you with confusion. It’s kinda funny really if you picture the scene in your head.
Tourist: Walking and taking pictures of the famous red steps in Time Square all of sudden he falls.
New Yorker: Yo man! “You good?”
Tourist: Excuse me…
I mean come on, I would laugh too in my head just picturing their face and them thinking well why did he have to say it like that ? It’s makes you eager on what the person meant good or bad. As I said before slang is our second language, well for me the most. I say “you good” mostly all the time I might not notice it but I do. It’s apart of me connecting to where I live my whole life. I go hard for my borough wouldn’t you ?. By the way we talk, dress, drag things to the max we are Brooklyn. Saying the phrase represents Brooklyn and the part I’m from Flatbush.
In many situations the phrase is said we can’t help but say it. We may be judged by the way we talk but that sets us apart from everyone else. From first hand walking in my hood I just observe my surroundings. You could hear the loud noises from the cars and the conversations people hold. The choice of words they use and how they use it is why we have all these words. It’s a way of expressing ourselves and how we feel.
My personality is shown more with how I talk and use this phrase. I could be sarcastic , worried , scared and a lot of emotions towards an event. “You good?” is self explanatory though it can be tricky of how the person uses it. New York being the birthplace of where all these slang words came from impacted our way of communicating with each other. I see it as a secret code we all use , but do we know the true meaning or why we say it everyday?

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