one/ won/ wun/ ; rhymes with "fun"
Definition: Pertaining to love, peace, and happiness; everyone love everybody else.
Attested: Now this is a New York word if I ever heard one! The only place I've heard this used or even mentioned is in New York. Some teammates of mine are from Long Island and I heard them use this term.
Example: "As another practice ended and we headed out of the locker room, I told Phil I'll catch up with him later and he simply responded, 'One'."
Etymology: In my experience, this unusual term is unique to New York. It seems standard among the natives of the state, but confusing to outsiders. Perhaps it came from a very common pastime phrases, "one love." This simply meant for people to unite together and love one another. Its use in Y2K can most likely be accredited to the famous rap artist, Nas. This New York musician frequently talks about a common love among people and has turned a belief into one word. So instead of saying goodbye, or whatever universally used expression, we can simply say "one."
- Rosco Newsom
awr - ÍÙ / Ùr 'ÍÙ/ ; rhymes with "Florio"
Definition: to not know
Attested: I first came across this term during first semester when a friend of mine from California was asked a question he did not know the answer to. Perhaps it is the location, but numerous Californians use this term frequently.
Example: "Hey Vincent, what are you doing tonight?" Vincent replies, "Oreo."
Etymology: This term, according to my Californian friends, is derived from a commercial, which I have never seen. Supposedly, there is a man eating cookies (the viewers know he is eating Oreos) while the boss is deciding what to name these new cookies that just came out onto the market. The boss asks the man, "What shall I call these cookie-things?" The man with his mouth full answers, "I don't know," but because of the cookies in his mouth, his answer is all convoluted. The boss thinks the man answered, "Oreo," so he replies, "Great idea! We will call them Oreos." Apparently, there is a similar pronunciation between the phrase, "I don't know" ("I dunno") and "Oreo." (try it)
- Heather Wang
ór-ro; / ór - rrrrrrr - ro*; / rhymes with "Zorro"
*Rolling the "r" is often used to extend the word in cases of extreme pain.
Definition: a sound used to express pain, distress, frustration or confusion. Also used as a replacement for "huh?"
Attested: I first came across this term in October 1999 at a Cornell Japanese Animation Society viewing of the series "Rurouni Kenshin." I soon found the word to be in frequent use by the members of the society.
1) Person 1: "Hey!! Are you listening to me?"
Person 2: "Oro?"
2) [After being hit by a brick] "Orrrrrrrrrrro!"
3) [After an extremely difficult exam] "Oro."
Etymology: The phrase is in wide use by viewers of the "Rurouni Kenshin" series. Although I lack the knowledge of Japanese to know for certain, I would surmise that "oro" is the Japanese equivalent to the English "Ay" or "Huh?" It has also been suggested that the word has its origins from the creator of the "Rurouni Kenshin" series. The series was created by Watsuki Nobuhiro, and the alternate theory suggests that Nobuhiro actually used his name to come up with the phrase, "No-ro." However, the phrase struck him as awkward so he dropped the "n"to arrive at "oro." Since then, "oro" has become a word with almost as many uses as the word "smurf" or "snork," which, as viewers of those respective series know, could be used for almost any purpose.
- Jason Li