Date: Wed, 28 Jan 1998 08:41:28 -0500 From: Robert Ness Subject: Re: "to dis" I assume that you have many answers by now, but if not: to dis: a clipping from disrespect, with functional shift from noun to verb. On Tue, 27 Jan 1998, JANE M SPALDING-JAMIESON wrote: > Is "to dis" a verb now? > > I am a student of linguistics at U.PEI. in Canada, and have heard two > instances of a slang term, wondering if anyone else has heard it, or > knows about its origins: > > 1/ Last week, Will Smith on "Fresh Prince of Bel Air" tv show says to > his girlfriend, "Are you dissin' me?" > Apparent meaning is something like, Are you trying to get rid of me, > or Are you disrespecting me? > > 2/ Here in Charlottetown, Angela Marchbank of PEI Special Olympics > said to me, also last week, "If you don't get through on the phone, > or if they say no to a donation ... just throw them all in a dis > pile. The dis pile is what we throw in the garbage later." > > Dis- is listed in the Oxford dictionary as a prefix, which can mean > rejected, among other things. But how did it become a word? Any > thoughts? > > (I realize this is just slang, but sometimes yesterday's > slang is today's serious vocabulary ... and I see in my peers a more > and more informal attitude towards the English language, which at > some point affects standard usage) > > - Jane Spalding-Jamieson > jspaldingjam[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] > (University of Prince Edward Island, > Charlottetown, PEI, Canada) >