If you want to speak English like a native speaker, YouTube videos are a GREAT resource. They are funny and they can give an insight into an English speaking culture. But these viral videos (videos that become popular and spread like a virus) can be difficult to understand because of the variety of slang and expressions used. And few of them have subtitles in other languages.
I’m here to help! We’re going to take apart a popular American YouTube video so that you COMPLETELY understand it. You’ll learn a bunch of new vocabulary and expressions. Most importantly you’ll hear how Americans speak in real life. Not scripted like the CDs and videos in your English class.
If you want to make learning English fun and authentic then YouTube is a great resource to use.
So let’s learn some English and have some laughs!
Speak More Like a Native with YouTube
Warning: Explicit Content. If you are easily offended, then you may want to check out one of our other English articles by clicking here.
Today I’m going to share a video with you that was produced by the band the Lonely Island (check out the article I wrote about another song by them, “Dick in a Box”). It was aired on the popular American comedy program Saturday Night Live in 2006.
The video features famous hollywood celebrity, Natalie Portman, rapping.
Portman is a well-respected actress and Harvard graduate (a famous, prestigious university in the United States). But in this video she raps about her “gangster” lifestyle of using drugs, having sex with lots of men, and cheating on her university tests.
Everything in this video is completely false, but it’s still funny to see a nice actress like Natalie Portman become a hardcore, gangster rapper. This video became very popular in the United States because people were blown away (very surprised) that an actress like Portman would perform in a video like this.
This video can be difficult to understand for native speakers, and near IMPOSSIBLE to understand no matter how good of an English student you are.
So let’s go ahead and make it a little easier for all of us to understand.
A Cultural Note
In English, we have many different ways of talking about oral sex, particularly fellatio (involving the male). It can be used sexually, but it’s also commonly used to insult someone in different ways.
Some common ways of saying felattio are:
- Suck my dick – can be used literally or as a vulgar way of insulting someone. It is similar to saying that you don’t agree with someone, or telling someone to fuck off.
- Suck a fat one/ Suck a fatty – the same as suck my dick.
- Suck it – a less vulgar way of saying suck my dick.
- To get head– only used in the literal sense.
- To get a blowjob – the same as to get head.
- Blow me – the same as suck my dick.
- Cocksucker – a very vulgar way of calling someone you don’t like.
I hope you weren’t too offended by this vocabulary, but I warned you!
If you want to know more about these words and see some examples, I recommend you check out our article on using swearwords.
This video is great for learning curse words like these that we Americans often use (you’ll see how in just a little bit), but be careful when using any of these words, as they are all offensive and should only be used in appropriate situations (most likely ONLY with close friends).
Learning Swear Words with Natalie Portman
Now let’s watch the video once before going into the difficult vocabulary. See how much you can understand the first time through.
Now that you’ve got an idea about the video, let’s try to understand it better. Let’s go over the vocabulary that you will need to know.
Badass – someone who is tough and/or crazy
Bitch – see our article on the word bitch.
Bourbon – a type of whiskey.
Bust in (someone’s) mouth – to beat someone up, to cause someone a lot of pain.
Cheat – when rather than studying, you find a dishonest way to pass a test.
Chick – a girl
Condone – to allow, to support.
Crazy off that airplane glue – Refers to using a type of inhalant (a drug that you breath through the nose in order to get high from the chemicals).
Day in the life of (someone) – What someone does every day.
Def posse – a group of awesome people (slang).
Dick – a more common way of saying penis.
Doing 120 – Driving 120 miles per hours.
Don’t test me/don’t push me – don’t piss me off, don’t make me mad. Usually is a threat, like if you make me mad I’ll hurt you.
‘Gnac – short for cognac, a type of alcoholic beverage.
Gushers – a type of candy that is chewy on the outside and filled with juice on the inside.
Jeff Zucker – the CEO (boss) of NBC (the TV station on which Saturday Night Live airs).
Look up to (someone) – to admire (someone)
Motherfucker – see our article on the word fuck
Okie doke – another way of saying OK
Pull up on (somewhere) – to go (somewhere), to arrive (somewhere)
Pussy – another more common word for vagina. Also a way of calling someone weak.
Role model – someone that one (usually a child) looks up to.
Shit – feces, poop (see our article on shit).
Sleep it off – When someone drinks too much, we say they need to sleep it off, or to sleep until they feel better.
Slit – to cut.
Smack the shit out of/outta (someone) – to hurt (someone) badly.
Smooch – to kiss.
Snort – to inhale a substance through the nose.
Swerving – driving recklessly (for example, when drunk).
Weed – marijuana.
Vouch for (something) – To attest to something, to say that something is correct.
Yay – cocaine.
Yo – Another way of saying hey.
Now you should be able to understand a lot more of the vocabulary that Portman uses. So, let’s watch the video again, but this time, follow along with the transcript and notes below. You’ll learn some new things about American culture and a lot more about speaking like a native!
Here we go:
As you can see, even native English speakers don’t always speak English correctly, and commonly make grammatical errors.
Swearing is an important part of any language, but you must learn how to use these words RESPONSIBLY. Otherwise, you’ll sound nasty, and people may think badly of you or not respect you.
Swear words in foreign languages never have the same bad perception for you as words in your own language because you didn’t grow up learning that these words were only to be used responsibly with friends.
So please, only swear when you need to, or not at all. Be an ambassador and a global citizen!
If you want to speak and understand English more like a native, then it’s crucial to find ways to incorporate English learning into your everyday life.
You can watch videos on YouTube, listen to podcasts like RealLife Radio, read a book, or watch popular TV shows. With these tools, your ability to understand English and speak like a native will greatly increase.
When you have fun learning English, it makes the process so much easier. So, find entertaining ways like this to improve your English!
If you enjoy watching TV and movies, and you would like a dynamic way to use it to improve your English, click here.
Also If you enjoyed this article, then please COMMENT below, and let us know your favorite English videos to learn English with.