"Um" replaced by "like"

Is this a native English-speaking wide phenomenon?

I overheard a conversation that two teenagers were having. There was not a single ‘um’ in their conversation but there were, like, fifteen "like"s in their interchange.

Is it just that I’m aging that I notice this or is there more to it?

Is facebook’s like button really an updated um button?

Have you been living up a mountain for the past five years?

‘Like awesome’ also takes the place of any adjectives the retards no longer know. ‘Like, it was like awesome, dude.’ coupled with excessive hand gestures to describe some particularly dull event in their lives.

It’s, like, not just teenagers? You know? People in their thirties, like, old people, they, like, do it too?

If the “like” goes at the end of the sentence, you’ve uncovered someone from the northwest of England, or Ireland. Irishstu will tell you that, like.

ur jst old wazup wit da kidz yo? ^^

Our parents probably thought we also talked as if we were retards when we were yoofs, too. Only difference is that WE sounded cool, hip and bleeding-edge trendy when we did it. Today’s bairns, however, simply sound like morons.

And if its ended in “likesay,” you’re talking to a Scot. Y’ken?

I always point it out to them. Like, keep them informed of their percentages of frequency. It’s a useful foil to provide some counter-annoyance.

I’ve always talked like an old fart. Got savagely bullied for it at school. Fought the buggers off with my copy of The King’s English (1932 ed.).

And least be thankful they’re not describing every bloody banality as “hao coo-ah!”

nuguh. . . nuguh. . . nuguh. . . nuguh. . .

I believe ‘um’ was most common before around 1980, when (AFAIK) youngsters started with this bimboesque ‘like’ crap. It featured prominently in Zappa’s 1982 parody, Valley Girl. Like O’m’gawd! It has been around for quite awhile, so the airheads saying ‘like’ are now in their late 20’s to 30’s.

It’s really sad.
Like my English teacher,
He’s like . . .
He’s like Mr. BU-FU!
We’re talking Lord God King BU-FU!
He’s like so GROSS!
He like sits there and like plays with all his rings,
And he like flirts with all the guys in the class.
It’s like totally disgusting!
I’m like so sure!
It’s like BARF ME OUT!
Gag me with a spoon!

And “like” is apparently being replaced by “liking”, e.g. “I’m liking…” In fact, this odd construction, fueled seemingly by McDonalds ads and the need to seem as if one is so incredibly active and involved in their lives that everything they do they are doing RIGHT NOW IN FRONT OF YOU, seems more prevalent in general these days. Compensation for that fact that we spend most of our time behind computer screens not actually doing anything, I’d guess.


More like 25 years. Or more.


More like 25 years. Or more.[/quote]

I was waiting for that. Bit of a rushed reply by me. I considered editing it to 10 or 15, but editing’s cheating.

25 years in North America, maybe. It’s taken a little longer to spread to small towns in the UK. In the 80s the teenagers used to use ‘went’ or ‘goed’ instead of ‘said’. I was living with a bunch of carrot crunching inbreds, though. I can’t remember when ‘He goed…’ changed to ‘He was like…’, but I think it was around the late 90s.

I’m in small town New Zealand. So international visitors wind their watches back thirty years.

“like” is like really dum ok? And um … um… “um” is brain daed :slight_smile:

Oh and while we’re at it, can we talk about ‘I’m good’? Like, um, like when you offer help or coffee or sth. and people say I’m good instead of ‘no, thank you’. I’m, like not a native speaker and all, but you know, when I first heard, I’m good, I was like, um, who says you’re bad??? I now know what it means of course, but I still find it, you know, kinda, like, um, impolite.

“Can I get you some tea??”
“I’m good”, with a nod and a wave.

yyah im good

(but micheal jackson he be BADD )

P.S. probably came from all the time those waitresses and waiters (specially when you just took a bite and your mouth is full) asking you “how is everything?”

What about “I’m all”, “he’s all”, etc? Usually said by girls.

A: So he hit on this other girl, and I’m all “How could you?”
B: No way! Then what?
A: Then he’s all “I’m sorry!” But I’m all “Whatever!”

[quote=“Chris”]What about “I’m all”, “he’s all”, etc? Usually said by girls.

A: So he hit on this other girl, and I’m all like “How could you?”
B: No way! Then what?
A: Then he’s all like “I’m sorry!” But I’m all like"Whatever!"you knowwwwwwwwww[/quote]
Fixed :laughing:

Is it easy to emigrate to NZ? I want to go.

Mmmm mmmm mmmm…:smiley: