Dear Classroom Members,
This has been a long journey of discovery.
It has always amazed me that so many teens and adults cannot speak a sentence without saying the word like 3 times.
I first noticed this phenomena in 1992....Yup! A long time ago. I had moved to Northern NJ and opened a small retail store. One of my young employees, a 17 year old girl, used the word "like" incessantly! I then started to notice the usage on TV shows that featured "Valley Girl" characters
OK! But how did this rural teenager become exposed to the Moon Zappa crowd? The internet was evolving and I began to casually search for a reference. Once again, quotes from Frank Zappa and the Southern California narrative contained this "was like" generational usage.
But still, how did the usage spread so deeply into our patterns of speach?
There were a few newspaper articles noting the usage, and over time, I began to notice the usage in print and radio advertising. And, WORSE!, my children, now in middle school, were using the word "like" with every spoken thought.
GRRRRR! "Like, like, like, like, like"...was my characteristic respone.
This was driving me nuts, but thanks to YouTube and Wikopedia, I have finally resolved the vector of the language virus.
There are not too many of our members that remeber "The Dobie Gillis Show" from 1959 to 1963. Well, I do! One of the featured characters was Maynard G Krebbs, a "beatnick" sidekick of Dobie that provided the humor of cultural conflict. He always used the word "LIKE".
Thanks to YouTube, I was able to relive those "wonder years" of mine.
That was the start of the virus, but how did it spread across the country....I didn't use the word like, Maynard did not infect my speach patterns. Then the revelation! A friend mentioned that a character on "Scooby Do" used the word like,,,,I checked it out on Wikopedia, and Guess What! The creator of" Scooby Do" cast his characters directly from the Dobie Gillis Show....Shaggy Rogers was Maynard G Krebbs. Now it all made sense, Young children, in their formative years are watching this show daily! They are picking up the language patterns from their exposure to TV and adults.....More TV than adults, for sure.
After 18 years, the Case is solved, my mind can rest on this one! So, if you get a minute or two, watch an excerpt of Dobie Gillis, from the Golden Years of Black and White TV, You'll gain a new appreciation of the words "LIKE" and "WORK".