Vol. 1, Issue #21 Nov. 10th - Nov. 23rd, 2006

The woot-woot is fini (The woot-woot never was)
By: H. H.

He was born in 1980, the bastard son of two tired trade professionals, industry veterans who had the faded look of clotted mascara and sun-cracked vinyl. His mother had been in her prime just a few short years before. She’d been the sound of Gloria-Gaynor-wannabes, immortalized forever by the Michael Zager Band in Let’s All Chant and still invoked to this day by drunken sorority chicks at the close of a night.

“Whoop-Whoop!” High-pitched. Parrot-sounding. Shouted at intervals during umpteen disco songs.

God, she’d been hot. Loved and adored. Fêted by many, had by few. It’d been one hell of a ride, until the day the disco died and goddamn new wave stole the scene. She’d cried herself sick, taken too many pills, grew heavy and thick with depression. That’s when she’d had one last hurrah with an acoustically appealing sound she thought might be her shining star. He would go on to ride a temporary high from his national debut in the Ferris Bueller Yello anthem, Oh Yeeeahh. She knew he’d been artificially lowered. She knew he would never reach the quality of noise stardom that she had had. She knew she was somehow slumming and she didn’t care. It was just nice to be admired again by someone with tonal respect, if even for just that little while. And so that’s how he was conceived. In the back room of a seedy, dried up disco, the product of a two-sound one-night stand.

He was an undersized little runt of a morpheme. Messy birth. Vowels compressed. Looked like a bald, newborn chick at the start of it. But the tiny sound rubbed his little phonemes, wiped his little letters and cooed sweetly “woot-woot.” And that’s what he was called from then on.

Woot-Woot was a precocious little guy. He had a habit of sneaking up behind people and suddenly emitting a shrill “WOOT-WOOT!” that caused many folks to jump and get annoyed. But he’d be standing there, little neck extended, little chin up, little eyebrows thrust into a mid-brow peak. So precious and slightly autistic, no one could stay mad at him for long.

Woot-Woot’s mother continued to sink headlong into former sound-star suburban hell. She smoked two packs a day and her luscious “Whoop-Whoop!” had turned into little more than a damp wheeze. “Whurr-Whurr.” Cough. Sputter. It was embarrassing, really.

Whoop-Whoop rarely left the couch, her growing girth melting into a tangle of flesh, crumbs, and cheap sofa as she deftly trotted from Days to Sally to Oprah to Hill Street Blues re-runs with the endurance of an experienced daytime-TV marathoner. Yet somehow, in what remained a considerable mystery of vocalization-shenanigans, she’d managed to produce five other baby sounds with various low-life warblers. When these matings took place no one was quite sure. But when the sounds of screeching tomcat and palm meeting armpit leaked from down the green shag carpeted hallway, Woot-Woot always threw the pillow over his head and turned over. Resolutely.

Woot-Woot’s five brothers and sisters stuck around for a while and then left as soon as they hit adult sound maturity. For a morpheme, this is usually just under three years. Woot-Woot occasionally recognized the tepid futility of his homelife, but hadn’t yet felt the urge to leave. He was slightly jealous, however, when no fewer than three of his siblings made appearances in the Yes tune Owner of a Lonely Heart. He was proud of them, in a far-off sort of way. But when his sister hooked up with a Silicon Valley duo and became the stock error-message alert, Woot-Woot realized there might be more out there for him. The land of tinsel and twilight began to beckon and Woot-Woot wondered, was there a place in peoples’ hearts for his sound?

Woot-Woot’s dad, Oh Yeeeahh, was on the road most of the time, but he tried to stop through for birthdays and holidays. They’d meet at the Burger King and talk about things. This typically included Oh Yeeeahh’s views on politics (conservative), gameshows (Bob Barker was his favorite), and foreign sounds (he didn’t like them). But lately Oh Yeeeahh had been enjoying a resurgence in popularity after being licensed by Duff Beer on the Simpson’s. He was ruffled with newfound pride, had lost 12 pounds, and expounded to his son on how one could never know what life would bring. And he’d started doing this weird pelvic-thrust thing that made Woot-Woot uncomfortable.

Woot-Woot choked when his father clapped him on the back heartily. “Son, it’s time for you to make your move! Oh yeeeahh!” Woot-Woot listened intently, trying to commit it all to memory. He knew it was important to impress people, to be so catchy that he’d jump to everyone’s lips and they couldn’t help but say his name. Drone-like. In triplicate.

So one day, when the over-inflated Fox News chimes approached him with the good stuff, Woot-Woot naïvely thought this might be his chance. Woot-Woot started juicing. His vowels shrank to the size of peas and his voice rose a bit – but he was huge. All over the nation. Woot-Woot gorged himself on MTV Spring Break sets and sweaty dance clubs across the nation. He was on everybody’s lips. And the muscular curve in his (admittedly small) double set of O’s caused many a weak knee and a coy smile. Woot-Woot was hot. Woot-Woot was the man.

He recognized and thanked the internet gods for the small coinciding miracle of D&D and EverQuest nerd lingo emerging simultaneously. “Wow, loot!” became “Woot!” became “w00t” became “Woot-Woot” became…whatever. He didn’t care. It all crescendoed into a pop-culture orgasm for Woot-Woot. He was on tee-shirts and in graffiti tags and text messages and my God, the chat boards. Woot-Woot ruled the social networking world.

Apart from the steroids, which Woot-Woot’s parents cautiously ignored, they were very proud of him. They were back on the charts. The parents of a world class sound. Not one embedded in a computer program or a chart-topping single, but one that literally meant “Awesome!” or “Kickass!” He’d made his way into the Urban Dictionary. Their precious little sound was now a word.

And somehow, like it usually does, the fame became leisure. The leisure became arrogance. The arrogance ceded to an emptiness, a hollow recognized hunger for something different. Something more. Woot-Woot slipped into a crisis.

He wondered about his calling. He wondered very fundamentally about his sound. He had chosen it at birth, had he not? Could he change it now? Could he evolve into a toot-toot? Could he shapeshift into a boot-boot?

Regardless, Woot-Woot became mute. Filled and fueled with a consuming desperation he began looking in all the places people search for meaning and healing. Priests. Therapists. Scrap-booking. Yoga. Meditation. Aura cleansings. Colonics. Ashrams. Vegan diets. Weepy YouTube confessionals.

Silent, lonely pondering.

And suddenly Woot-Woot recognized the backside of a mountain of popularity. He saw his name on the back of high-schoolers’ cars in shoe polish. He was crudely silk-screened onto sweat-shop tee-shirts for sale at Gadzooks. He was tired, cheapened, and oh-so-yesterday. All the luster had worn off. And without the juice he gradually shrank back to his normal size, his capitals diminishing to lower-case, a softer, humbler woot-woot. His vowels regained their original girth, but he looked a little more diminutive, just a shade – passé. woot-woot was toppled and ready for meaning.

And so little woot-woot bade goodbye to the comment boxes on MySpace and wandered into the forest. He sank slowly into the dense mesh of the forest sounds, merging with the moss and the hush and the rustle of the breeze. And it was only when he was thoroughly enveloped in the fabric of the woods that he heard it.



It was like a whisper. A calling. For woot-woot it was the sound of true love.

And even today in the woods and the forest and the backlands and the hammocks and breezy, shaded areas…he’s there. If you listen closely, you can still hear him. Whispering softly in a slight sing-song: “woot-woot… woot-woot loves hoot-hoot… woot-woot” followed by the comeback: (hoot-hoot) (hoot-hoot).

And now, finally, I think he is truly happy.

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©2006 NONCO Media, L.L.C.