What Do ‘Yak’ and ‘Scud’ Mean to You?


Jurors in the trial of alleged drug dealer Jaquan "Jay Cash" Layne got a chance to devote some real thought to the ever-evolving English language on Wednesday. After prosecutors played some secretly-recorded tapes of the defendant discussing the business of "yak" and "scud," narcotics officer Alfred Hernandez was called to the stand to explain what, exactly, those words mean. While he told the jury that the terms refer to crack and marijuana (respectively), Layne's attorney urged the court to consider an alternative interpretation:

Frank Rothman, [the lawyer for] the accused kingpin, tried to persuade jurors that, at least according to online slang dictionaries, "yak" actually means cognac and "scud" means, as the lawyer apologetically put it, "a female who appears to be attractive from a distance but who isn't, close up."

"You've never heard of sipping yak?" Rothman asked at one point.

"No sir," the narcotics expert answered. "I've heard of somebody yacking, as in throwing up."

So, is Jay Cash a criminal, or just a guy who enjoys chatting about brandy and women and/or exotic livestock and Soviet weaponry? Be grateful you don't have to decide.

Manhattan jury gets lesson in gang bang slang [NYP]