The Source Of That Thing Daddy’s Children Have Started To Say

So. My oldest son is twelve, and he’s starting to notice girls, although he will downplay this, but when he’s noticed them, his body language changes to an enforced nonchalance, and he sweeps back his forelock often and with flourish. He did this when putting his contact information into the phone of the Norwegian exchange student last week. He did it when the young cashier at the grocery recognized the band on his shirt.

So yesterday, when both of my boys were engaged with girls of their age at the martial arts school after their classes were over, I reported to my wife,

They both were mackin’ on girls.

Which might just catch on at their small school as the proper slang.

Why on earth would I use that natively for flirt?

Well, remember, gentle reader, I grew up in the projects in the 1970s, when many of the residents wore picks in their afros kind like Questlove does.

But they were earnest and not retro.

Did I try to wear a pick in my hair like my friends did. Yes. It went as well as you might expect, but certainly better than it would today, where my pate is as close to shaven as I can get.

So it’s a product of my youth.

Or perhaps I use it because I listen to a lot of Willie Hutch.

Which I like to say is because I spent a lot of time in my youth in the housing projects, where many of the young men walked around with the new portable tape players on their shoulders, playing music just like that. Presumably, while preparing to mack on girls.

Still, I keep using out-of-date slang with my children in hopes that they’ll pick it up and suddenly the whole school will be talking like me.

But it has not happened yet.