#250 Inventing new words and phrases with your friends that only make sense to you

Ten goods.

That’s a phrase my friends used in high school to express our casual annoyance with minor problems. Extra homework for the weekend? Ten goods. Cafeteria sold out of panzerottis? Ten goods. Tennis ball stuck in the gutter during road hockey? Ten goods.

Now you got it.

Ryan started saying it first and Chad caught on and soon it became one of those made-up phrases we used all the time. It was a secret code, scrambled joke, and private head-nod with its own set of rules on how it was used.

For example! Minor things such as falling off Rainbow Road were shortened to the simple ‘Ten’ with sarcastic eyebrow raise and one-second lip curl. Major things like getting assigned an essay just before the long weekend was met with the long drawl version of ‘Tehhhhhhhhhhhn.’

I’m not saying it made sense but it made sense to us.

Yes, when you hang with a tight pack of peeps long enough it’s amazing how new words start filling the tiny cracks between sounds and sentences. It’s strangely beautiful to see language evolving before your eyes and be part of its creation. Brains suddenly push past booky norms to create clarity in dark vacuums of vagueness.

Just remember — every word we use today came from a group of friends who started using it long ago. So to those long gone packs of chatty teens and wordy queens we say thanks for helping us understand…. everything we’re talking about. And when your group of friends comes up some good ones… make sure you keeping using them and shout ’em out.


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“Over Easter weekend my friend and I were hiking along a gorgeous trail in the Slocan Valley, British Columbia. We were almost back at the car when and I needed to use the facilities…well, the wonderful folks who maintain the trail also have out-houses just for people like me! I opened the door and SQUEALED with delight because there, resting above the fully stocked toilet-paper dispenser, was The Book of Awesome!” – Jackie L.

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95 thoughts on “#250 Inventing new words and phrases with your friends that only make sense to you

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