02 September 2009

"Happy talk, keep talkin' happy talk" --South Pacific (Rodgers & Hammerstein)

When you're together for a long time, they say you start to look like each other. Wait, that's with dogs, right? You start to look like your dog. Well, I don't think we look like each other, or dogs, but, then, we don't have a dog. Maybe if we had a dog we'd start to look like it. Or maybe people just pick dogs that they look like already because they're vain. Or maybe it's not vanity. Maybe they're just more comfortable with stuff that's familiar. Like dogs that look like them. If they cock their heads and flop their ears and lick themselves.

Where was I going with this? Oh, yeah. Not looks or dogs.

After eight years of marriage and about the same amount of time together before we got married, the Hubster and I have developed a shorthand in email/IM and in discussion. And, lucky you, I'm about to let you in on some of it.


Definition: Short for "Knew you'd want to know." Only used in written format.

"That icky thing finally fell off. Kywtk."


Definition: Short for "Because you have to know everything." Only used in written format. Similar to Kywtk but, where Kywtk is sometimes preceded by useful information, as in "The plumber finally called back. Kywtk.", Byhtke is not. Both are used to pre-empt the inevitable question "Why are you telling me this?!"

"I watched back to back episodes of The Golden Girls. Byhtke."

"[ ]"

Definition: This is shorthand for "No comment." Only used in written format. It often is placed before the body of a forwarded message. Where it can literally mean "I am sharing this but have no comment on it," it more often means "I am beyond words at the sheer stupidity of this."


[ ]

{Forwarded message from corporate:}

Oh, and remember: next Friday is Hawaiian shirt day. So, you know, if you want to, go ahead and wear a Hawaiian shirt and jeans.


Definition: Code word for "your bra strap is showing."


*whispered* "Koala."
*adjust* "Thanks."

"Don't get any on the wooden floor."

Definition: This is the equivalent of an eye roll and is used in response to a statement that is so obvious, it need not be said.

When we first moved in, we had hardwood floors put in and we loved them. We then set about painting. While Hubby was opening the lid to the can of paint, I, anxious and ever helpful, said "Don't get any on the wooden floor." He looked at me with such unabashed disappointment and disgust and said "Really? I shouldn't pour the paint on the wooden floor? REALLY?" that I burst out laughing. I'm laughing as I type this. Yeah, Mistress of the Obvious, that's me.


"Drive carefully."
"Yeah, and don't get any on the wooden floor."

So, why did I choose to share all this with you? Byhtke.


J said...

Wow that is very creative and fun. My husband and I should start up something like that :)

I can be captain obvious too sometimes and my husband hates it!

Hammer said...

Very nice. Got me thinking about all the absurdly obscure shorthand I've developed with specific people over the years. Hilarious to us, but [ ] to everyone else.

Anonymous said...

Happy 8/16 year anniversary :) I loved this post! Vocabulary unique to couples or friends is fascinating to me.

I don't have a good example to share but after asking my husband if he could be home on Saturday for delivery of a new couch to our house, he replied (which I thought was hilarious):
Yes, only if the delivery crew pick me up off the existing couch, deliver the new one and put me back on the couch. His way of telling me this weekend will consist of endless hours of football watching.

The Bug said...

Fun. I'll have to think about whether hubby & I have anything like that. I think so, but without my sidekick here to remind me I can't remember. Brain cloud, remember? We own the movie too - need to watch it again SOON!

Kate said...

In my family, two fingers means no. Three means yes. Five means maybe and one means you're so screwed - you better get out of there and FAST.

Mike said...

I think you need to go add all this stuff to the urban dictionary.

Kate said...

I'm impressed with your husband's subtlety in using the word "koala." My husband would just state, loudly, that my bra strap was showing. And then probably snap my bra right after he said it.

repliderium.com said...

I freaking LOVE this.

Narm said...

This is hysterical. One of my favorite posts I've read in awhile.

But it is completely overshadowed by the AMAZING cartoon you opened with.

Liebchen said...

I love the wooden floor line. And as for "koala", my friends and I used to say "It's snowing in Brazil."

Don't judge. It was middle school.

Okay, okay. Judge away.

Jamie said...

This is great! Along these lines, my gf & I coined one just last night. Eating pizza at the bar at Red Rocks there was some silly fishing "drama" on TV in which they spend five minutes freaking out because someone has stacked all the fish on one side of the boat and it was listing. Everyone was bitching and cursing and seemed unable to do anything. All we could say was, "Just move the fish!!"

After much laughing we decided that anytime someone's bitching and moaning about some situation that has a really simple solution you say "just move the fish."

Little Ms Blogger said...

I love the lingo and love Jamie's 'Just Move the Fish' because I think he was watching Swords and I left the room when it was on.

What's your code for "We have to leave immediately before my head explodes". I really could use lingo for that.

f.B said...

our word is FACE. it has to be said in caps. that's the only way it works. and it's kinda like a wildcard as to meaning.

Dixie said...

So I can also totally see your husband saying "Really? I shouldn't pour the paint on the wooden floor? REALLY?" and I find that incredibly funny. However, when I use that sort of response with my family, they tell me I'm a smartass. It's so sad.

My friend and I, during the recent election, would just look at each other and say "Hope." "Trust." "Change." very seriously whenever someone started talking lots of political stuff at us. Then we'd laugh hysterically.

I think I might start using Byhtke for tweets or Facebook updates, since those are usually so meaningless.

Anonymous said...

Mmmm, er, uh.........

lacochran said...

J: Ever since UbbyDubby, I wanted a secret language. Guess it's not so secret anymore.

Hammer: :) Different relationships, different shorthand.

HKW: Thanks. Sounds to me like good, clear communication there. :)

The Bug: "You mean you were diagnosed with something called a brain cloud and didn't ask for a second opinion?"

Kate: Ha! Interesting!

Mike: Then EVERYbody would know, not just us elite types.

Kate: Ha! Niiiiiice. Do you give him wedgies as paybacks?

repliderium.com: I'm so glad! :)

Narm: Thanks. And, I agree with you--Doug Savage is nothing short of genius.

Liebchen: "It's snowing in Brazil."--I like it. Very film noire. Very "The cow flies at midnight." :)

Jamie: "Just move the fish." Catchy! (Get it? Catch? Fish?)

Little Ms Blogger: You could tap your head a la Elaine Benis of Seinfeld. Then, if the message wasn't received, your head quite possibly would explode.

f.B: Um, sure. As long as you two understand. :)

Dixie: Delivery might have something to do with it.

I like that "Hope." "Trust." "Change." one. :) You summarized a whole campaign!

kansasmediocrity: What? *blink*

Wicked Courtni said...


My husband and I are very in tune to our "when others are around" communication.

Mostly it is my eye-talk. Meaning, depending on the tone of my eye... will tell you how scared he is to go home with me. Heh.

GreenCanary said...

I think the word verification is some sort of secret language... Years from now we'll learn that the aliens were using it to send secret messages to one another and we'll be all, "DAMMIT! I should have known that 'crurac' meant, 'Don't forget: abduction at noon.'!"

mylittlebecky said...

i may have to intro one or two into my texting because it would just help things along and smooth them out a bit. espesh byhtke. that's a good 'un.

J said...

Wooden floor reminded me of the Dutch saying "He didn't exactly invent the cereal bowl" :)

And why is there another "J" here? There can be only one!

rachaelgking said...

We already have so many, I'm sure it will sound like we're speaking in tongues in another 7 years.

And I'm totally stealing koala. But I'll make it my own... maybe "wallaby". YES.