Commentary by Danielle Wilson
My newly-minted 12-year-old and I were texting back and forth a few days ago about the homework she supposedly slid under my door after I’d gone to bed. I, of course, failed to see it (or even step on it) and therefore, was of absolutely no help to her. Eventually she typed, “It’s Gucci. I’ll just ask my teacher.” Confused at her word choice and somewhat miffed that she included not one, but two, crying emoji’s, I randomly asked a couple of students who were just walking into my classroom, “Have you ever heard the phrase, ‘It’s Gucci?’” They surprised me with ear-to-ear grins, like “Wow! Our old fart of a teacher might finally be catching on!”
Turns out, “It’s Gucci” means everything is fine, although I’m sure my daughter did not merely wish to inform me she no longer needed assistance. I sensed a definite if-you-were-a-stay-at-home-mom-you-wouldn’t-ignore-me vibe.
Anyhoo, the following morning, having slept terribly, I announced to a group of juniors, “I am really riding the struggle bus today!” I had learned this euphemism last year in the halls and so sought to not only relay my fatigue but also connect on their level.
“Um, Mrs. Wilson? We don’t really say that anymore.” Argh! There goes my street cred. I simply can’t get it right. When I don’t understand I seem stupid, and on the rare occasion when I do, I still seem stupid. It’s a catch-22, like the swearing crisis I experienced in 2003. If I dropped the F-bomb in front of my 3-year-old after an unfortunate potty-training incident, I risked receiving a call from Sister Mary Jo at PRE. If I didn’t, if I somehow miraculously refrained from releasing the cuss-word Kraken as I Silkwooded the entire bathroom, I’d go insane from bottled-up frustration.
The point is, that despite having kids at home and teaching high schoolers, I can no longer keep up with today’s youth speak. Alas, I must accept and use the language I know and love, and not worry about impressing teenagers. If they think I’m weird, so what? It’s Gucci.