My 8 yr. old beat me at Scrabble tonight...

And his winning word was, yo! We looked it up in the urban dictionary and found this common word among teens,  tweens and rappers has an amazing bit of history. The word captured the nation's imagination when underdog boxing hero Rocky Balboa uttered it every five seconds in the 1970's cult classic film. But the word has deep roots in Philly culture.  According to the New York Times, South Philadelphia residents in the 1930's were mostly Italian immigrants from the southern region of Italy, Campania, which is part of Naples. In the Neopolitan dialect guaglione (pronounced guahl-YO-nay) means young man. The immigrants, as most immigrants have and will continue to do, (hello, Spanglish) shortened the word to guahl-Yo, which became whal-YO which was inevitably shortened to yo. The common greeting among Italian-American males was, "Hey, whal-YO," them to simply, "yo." And so it is today. 

My son was bored out of his mind when I read the etymology of the word, and basically said, "Yo mom, bottom line, I won!"