by Terri Wagner
How important is lingo in a book? I remember about a million years (or so it seems) when some "enlightened" professor of English decided all of us needed to read ghetto lingo. I couldn't understand much past the first line. When rap became popular I changed from rock to well anything else because I didn't get the lingo. I had no idea if it was "dirty" or not. I just plain couldn't understand it.
I've read books where the main characters are from another country. However, the author isn't. So I wonder then how much of that lingo is correct. Or when we write about our founding fathers and don't substitute "f" for "s."
What brought all that up? Well, I follow a Starsky and Hutch site out of England. And half the time I don't get what "they" are saying. Which can be hysterical because I just ask. I think I'm the token American on the site.
So yesterday, on that site, I mentioned a bit of 70s lingo since the show itself was n the 70s. The response was hysterical. How many of you guys remember things like "far out," "oh man," "cool" when it was just "cool" and not "kewel." I'm reminded of the song by Tim McGraw, back when a Coke was a Coke, etc.
How do you all feel about lingo? See that's a southerner way of talking. Does it enhance a book or just irritate the reader who's completely unfamiliar with the wording?