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Is wassup hussla? (also gangsta, killa etc.) appropriate to say to a friend or a colleague? I mean, I know that it's not any sort of an official phrase I'd say to my boss. What I mean to ask is whether this word may be taken offensively, like nigger in the US.

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This is really a case of "if you have to ask, then the answer is 'no'". This is something that should be clear based on observing the group you are in. I can't think of anything more irritating than a colleague or friend who calls people hussla all the time. And you should be able to tell if it is okay in your circle of friends, because you should be hearing them say it already. –  Kosmonaut Feb 18 '11 at 13:18
    
I was mostly seeing it as an ice breaker. Like these situations where everybody is formal simply because nobody knows anyone. But the fact that you'd be irritated means that at least one person wouldn't like it, which in turn makes me reconsider. –  Elijah Saounkine Feb 18 '11 at 13:41
    
@Kosmonaut Irritating and offensive are two different things, so while it may be irritating to have a friend call everyone something ("dude", "hussla", "bro") that doesn't make it offensive. –  David Navarre Aug 20 '12 at 16:14
    
Would be appropriate for Sales Staff, is basically their job description. –  Amicable Feb 15 '13 at 11:27
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2 Answers

up vote 10 down vote accepted

The word is hustler, and it can be very appropriate depending on the situation. At it's broadest, it means nothing more than "somebody who will put in the effort necessary to get things done". In the darker corners of the streets, it carries a different connotation ("one who will do anything to make a deal"), but the word lives a respectable life in the suburbs as well.

Killer may be an appropriate nickname as well -- it doesn't necessarily mean, well, a killer. It could mean nothing more than, say, a reliable closer in a sales department.

Gangster (or any street-spelling variation thereof) is probably not appropriate for the workplace -- even if your are working for, um, "legitimate businessmen" whose legitimate businesses seem to do very little actual business. They have their own preferred vocabulary, and it doesn't involve interesting any outside parties who ought to stay disinterested.

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This might be a bit confusing, because the word I had in mind was urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=hussler So it is misspelled in the question, right? –  Elijah Saounkine Feb 18 '11 at 10:58
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It's the same word -- the double-ess spelling is a hip-hop-esque misspelling. It's jess kooler 2 stick it to the man than to use a dictionary. –  bye Feb 18 '11 at 11:02
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ok, thank you a lot for your input! Now I'm going to call everyone killas and husslas! –  Elijah Saounkine Feb 18 '11 at 11:09
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+1 for "legitimate businessmen" whose legitimate businesses seem to do very little actual business: made me smile. –  Benjol Feb 18 '11 at 12:34
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Based on the UD poster's inability to spell half of the words in the post and the 50/50 up down vote, I would not use this particular entry for anything except perhaps as a bad example... –  mplungjan Mar 12 '11 at 17:13
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Everything can be taken as offensive. Some may confuse your "hussler" with the porn magazine, and thus take offense.

It can be... nah, I can't get myself to call "appropriate". "Inoffensive" it may be, but even though I'm generally used to very informal workplaces, I wouldn't call a co-worker "hustler". It doesn't just depend on the workplace, it depends much more on how friendly or maybe even close you are to/with your co-workers.

Or are you working in a pharmaceutical company? You know, with other "drug dealers"? ;-) Then it may... well, it would still be extremely informal.

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I don't think anyone would confuse it with the magazine in that context. –  advs89 Feb 18 '11 at 16:11
    
@advs If they got the whole context, probably. But if someone walks past you just as you said "Hustler"... they could think you said that, and take offense. –  Jürgen A. Erhard Apr 21 '11 at 8:30
    
Perhaps, but I would say it's pretty low-risk. –  advs89 Apr 24 '11 at 2:30
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