Tag Archives: Vocabulary

You Gotta Have Vocab

Once you start hanging out with a group of friends for a period of time, a strange thing starts to happen. Most likely, everyone will be speaking the same language (English, Spanish etc…), but you start to develop your own dialect.

Words are shortened. Inside jokes become shorthand and code words. Sometimes new words or phrases are made up out of the blue. It gets to the point where some conversations, while in the lingua franca, are virtually incomprehensible to outsiders.

I love that point.

I have several groups of friends with several distinct dialects, but in this post, I’m going to cover a small portion of the slang my college friends and I developed.

Da na na!- An exclamation introduced by my friend Stillman, who brought it from his high school in St. Louis. It’s a catchall phrase but most often used as a greeting between friends in our group or a response to good news. Example: Stillman: “Did you hear the Red Wings were eliminated?” Me: “Da na na!”

404- The general term for our house my senior year of college. Example: Deane: “What’s going on tonight?” Me: “Get over to 404, we’re having a party.”

Bro, Broseph or Brah- Also used as a greeting, mostly between my friend Mike and I. However, it is meant ironically after having heard it genuinely from numerous meathead frat boys at our part-time job. Example: Me: “Broseph, what’s up?” Mike: “Brah, not much.”


Itchy- An adverb that is not used in its traditional sense. Mostly, it is used when a member of the group is excited about something or questioning someone about something potentially exciting. I believe it was introduced by my friend John. Example: “So did you hear about that itchy job yet?”

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