There are words and phrases that manipulate their way into the collective language of coolness -- making them so uncool.
"You da man!" is one such phrase. A few years ago, it had 50-year-old guys in office slacks pointing finger guns.
And who can forget "Wassup?!"
After this story, we can add all things "izzle."
Fo shizzle. Fo realizzle.
Because now, for the Internet gangsta inside us all, there is Gizoogle.
Reader be warned: This isn't a family-friendly Web site.
Gizoogle is the illegitimate, thugged-out cousin of Google that translates its search results into Snoop Dogg slang, or izzle-speak, a sort of nuevo pig Latin. Enter "Vice President Dick Cheney" in the search field and it turns up "Vizzy President Dizzle Cheney." Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is "Condoleezza Rizzle." It then supplies the same information on the subjects as Google does -- except it's izzle-filled and obscenity laden.
We can thank MTV for this.
MTV is the hub for izzle-isms and Snoop Dogg's sketch comedy show, "Doggy Fizzle Televizzle." Thus, giz-illions of izzles reach places like York, Pa., and people like John Beatty, who created Gizoogle.
"I started the site a few weeks ago," says Beatty, a 28-year-old Web designer. "I was talking to my buddy on AOL Instant Messenger and he always talks in that izzle-speak, and I do it to my wife all the time and she hates it. I was thinking that it might be cool if there was a site that searched and all of the answers came up in that format."
It started as a joke and a homage to Snoop Dogg for bringing izzle-speak back to the hip lexicon. But now the Web site is clocking 60,000 hits a day, according to Beatty. In February, the site landed at No. 4 on Entertainment Weekly's "Must List." Only U2's "All Because of You" video, Patricia Arquette in "Medium" and the movie "Aliens of the Deep" were rated cooler.
The roots of izzle-speak are fuzzizzle. But it might trace back to 1981 and a Philly songwriter named Frankie Smith, who released "Double Dutch Bus," a version of the children's jump rope game. Smith's original song started out as an expletive-laced freestyle diss aimed at SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) for turning him down for a job as a bus driver. When Smith played the song for studio engineers, they told him to clean it up. He did, and even brought in neighborhood kids to the studio to add pig Latin. At the end of the song, he calls out his own version of the "Name Game" -- "Bilzarbra, Mitzery, Milzetty . . ." And he and the children can be heard changing "Double Dutch" to "Dilzzouble Dizzutch." The song stayed at the top of the Billboard charts for almost six weeks and sold more than 4 million copies.
Throughout the years, other hip-hop artists would add -izzle suffixes or "iz" infixes to their lyrics. Retired-yet-still-recording rapper Jay-Z spouted in Snoop Dogg's "Drop It Like It's Hot (Remix)": "Got haters on my jizzock / plus the frickin cizzops / all of whom want to hit me with shizzots til I drizzop." Then Snoop D-O-Double Gizzle, as he sometimes calls himself, added fuelizzle to the fizire with "Doggy Fizzle Televizzle," which began airing in 2003 with characters such as schoolteacher Mr. Dizzle.
Now we have Gizoogle.
In geek-speak, here is how the site works: Using a programming language called PHP, the program counts the syllables and vowels and adds "izzle" whenever possible and also throws in some of Snoop's lyrics. As a homage to Snoop's show, "I made it so that television pops up as televizzle every time," says Beatty, whose full-time job is running Originalicons.com, a Web site that provides instant-messaging buddy icons.
The Gizoogle site also offers a translator called a "textilizer." If you input the words to something, say, sweet and innocent, such as the "Barney" theme song, and hit enter you get something like: I love you / you love me / we're one stoked family / witta bootylicious big hug and a kiss fizzle from me ta you / won't you say you love me, too?
The Gizoogle site mirrors Google's multicolored lettering, but the O's in Gizoogle are filled with chromed-out wheel rims.
"When I first put the site up, I had these crappy gold spoke rims on there and then my friend was like, you have got to get some spinners on there," Beatty says.
Google officials aren't commenting, but this isn't the first time Google has had to deal with folks biting its style. In 2004, lawyers for Google challenged Booble, a porn search engine. Booble changed its look and is still up and running.
And Beatty isn't the only one out there izzilating. The master himself, Snoop Dogg, has his own version on his Web site, SnoopDogg.com. "After I put the site up, someone called me and told about Snoop's thing," Beatty says.
Gizoogle "is a parody site," he says. " . . . I think that the people at Google have a pretty good sense of humor. It is all in good fun. . . . I look at this like a science project. I am just trying to see how far I can take it."