Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Sat May 4 22:31:28 UTC 2013

On Sat, May 4, 2013 at 10:38 AM, Victor Steinbok <aardvark66 at>wrote:

> As I've said before on several occasions, I don't get out much. So I
> must be the last person the hear new words. Like "twerking"...
> UD comes up with a bunch of hits, but there's an interesting
> twist--there are 6 hits. The three from Dec. 2011 forward deal with
> "slutty dancing". The other three only refer to rapid movement,
> generally sex related. Well, two of them do that--the last one
> identifies it as "teasing someone, to a torcherous level".
> That might have been sufficient, but I thought it might have some
> relation to "tweaking". One of the craft breweries (Avery, Boulder, CO),
> renamed their caffeinated stout (mix of high-alcohol stout and freshly
> brewed espresso) "Tweak", after they got complaints about the original
> name (that included the word "meth" in it). "Tweaking" goes back at
> least into the 1990s, but if UD is to be believed, there may be some
> differentiation there as well. The original reference, I believe, was to
> characterize the behavior of a meth addict (or, as some
> dictionaries/glossaries suggest, actual meth addiction), but there is a
> secondary meaning that's widespread now and that's for being nervous
> around law enforcement (police, customs agents) that may not involve any
> meth. One UD line deviates into the "twerking" territory, if it is to be
> believed: "another word for banging". UD also has a bunch of similar
> entries for "tweeking", for obvious reasons. A lot of noise here, but
> the time frame is the same.
> One down note--unfortunately it appears that the White House "Street
> Terms" page has been removed as the Office of Drug Policy has been
> evolving. At least, I have been unable to track it down.

AFAIK, "twerking' is the most recent name for what has been known far - uh,
"for" - the past quarter-century or so as the "boody/booty dance." It's
also known as "-clapping" and "-shaking" and probably plenty of others,
too, depending on the 'hood.

This is one of the few things that *I* would be willing to accept as an
African survival. You see it - well,  *I* see it and its variations done
everywhere that there are colored folk "acting a nigger" in whatever
country, according to a Lomax documentary.

But it's like the micr-omini. It's had to wait for its time to come, before
going public. Or maybe it's still too early.

A students'-rights group posted to Facebook WRT high-schoolers expelled
after they posted to YouTube a video of themselves twerking. The Fb post
included the relevant video. It showed white chicks being schooled in the
dance by a black dude. IMO, of course, things probably would have been
cool, had the white girls had the sense to exclude the black boy from their

Nostalgia for the Present: An Anthology of Writings (from Detroit) - Page 93
Kofi Natambu - 1985
"... topsy turvy was a come cleared and self ishways alying and canned heat
was a motion in a choco-lotta

booty dance

found a five w/infinite scenarios was a breath of litenings ways of
refrigerated sighs classic arrivals is am dead pending lotta …"

[Watch out, James Joyce! We coming for that *ass*!]

However, I haven't a clue as to why the name has changed so drastically.
People want a name and not just a description?


Anyone who cares can find videos of chicks - dudes usually don't do it -
doing the dance, under either name, among the usual suspects.

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

The American Dialect Society -

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