Tuesday, December 14, 2004

ACS and Abbrevs

I know this will offend and alienate a few of you, but I will say it anyway: I hate the LOL acronym. Hate it, hate it, hate it. I don't know why, exactly, but geez. Somehow it sounds like the name of a cheesy snobby girls' sorority: "we are the sisters of LOL . . . "And I imagine that these sisters would walk around with a Lavern-and-Shirley-esque loopy lapel pin with the acronym LOL scrawled across it in pink rhinestones (not that I have anything against pink rhinestones, per se). Usually when I hate something, the only thing I can do to make myself feel better is to come up with something even worse to top it. I like to fight fire with fire, if you will. So I came up with the instant messenger acronym ITL, which stands for "I'm totally laughing." Now, this is far cheesier than "laughing out loud," but it satisfies me to use it. And now Marcy and I almost exclusively use acronyms when we IM each other. In fact, passersby would have much difficulty deciphering our IM conversation if it happened to be left on the computer. A jumble of "rrr's," "ily's" and "idk's" would be all they could see. Sometimes Marcy will introduce a new acronym that even I can't figure out. I spend a few minutes cracking the code, then respond in kind.

We do this because we are fundamentally lazy, but it's also a statement against LOL, the fake sorority, and all that it stands for.

It also stems from our year of living together, when we became infatuated with abbreviations, which are in the acronym family. When it comes to language, Marcy and I are just very efficient. Why waste time saying "cute" when you can say "cue"? Why say "I'm sorry" when it is so much faster to just say "I'm sorr"? We got so good at abbreviations that we even started using them in different languages: "ci vediamo" in Italian became "ci ved." "Ti voglio bene" was shortened to the much simpler "ti vo." Combining the two enabled us to communicate exactly what we were feeling in a fraction of the time: "ci ved, ti vo," which stands for "we'll see each other soon and I love you as a friend." The funny thing is that these phrases are a result of our loathing of certain abbrevations (like "Mo Tab," for example) and the peeps who use them. To conquer our hatred, we joined in the fun to an extreme. Now I've got Mike saying "I apolo" when he wants to apologize (and, thanks to my manipulative skills, I've got him saying "I apolo" a lot).

So a typical IM reads like this:

Marcy: hyd?

Carly: g, hydb?

Marcy: g, g. am blogging at work right now. wyd?

Carly: am sitting here watching big jobs.

Marcy: rrr

Carly: well, I have to get in the shower, as it is after 10 am. Ti vo, ci ved

Marcy: ti vo, ci ved. ily. bb.

Carly: bb.

Marcy: ttyl

Think of how cumbersome it would be to write each of those acronyms out!


  1. Totally LOL! It's just that, it's really what I'm doing. Even though it's at my own expense.

  2. I'm reminded of my first experience with the unexplained acronymn, TTFN, in junior high. I was mystified. Kind of like I am now.

  3. This reminds me of DAMN -- Dixon Against Margins Now -- I guess you've always had an ear for catchy, and appropriate, acronyms. You know, I feel that I am a window into teenage Carly for your blog...a link, if you will.

  4. gj. itl. iLism.

    Last wee I saw a lic pla that said "LOL LMAO" and it really made me ma.


  5. Robyn,
    I will never forget DAMN. Those were the days of Gandhi-like rebellion. Thank you for being the best and most reliable link to my teenagehood. You were there for all of it.

  6. I think you should know... Sarah Marinara and I are now using ITL in our IM conversations.

  7. I am honored! My goal is to spread ITL across the world, and usurp LOL. Thanks for helping me get the ball rolling.

  8. Oh Carly... this blog is just 2 Qt 2 B 4 got 10!!!