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How to Learn the Latest Slang: Generation Z for Beginners

If you have spent any time on the internet and are over the age of 25, you have probably run into some slang that goes right over your head. You may even find yourself asking “when did I get so old?” or “what the heck is a pawg?” Don’t worry you’re not alone on this one. With Gen Z being the first generation that has grown up entirely on social media, their slang is fast moving and spreads like wildfire. If you are tired of feeling out of touch or like your age is catching up with you, here are some things you can do to keep up with the times.

Download TikTok

If you have resisted this social media platform due to the cringe dance routines, let this be your sign to give it a try. TikTok has a highly skilled algorithm that tailors your page or FYP specifically to your likes and interests. So if you aren’t interested in seeing thousands of teens doing the same upper body heavy dance moves over and over again, you probably won’t have to.
There are niches on TikTok for just about every obscure hobby or interest. There are pages dedicated to analyzing specific shows or films, pages that feature cute animals, or pages that are all about food prep and organization. However, one thing all these accounts have in common is that they all know how to use the current slang terms that are in circulation. Also check out the comments on the videos that pop up on your for you page. You can find many popular slang terms being used correctly in the comment areas.

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Ask If You Don’t Know

Another thing you can do to understand slang is by simply asking. If you hear someone use a term you are unfamiliar with, just swallow your pride and ask for an explanation. It may feel humiliating to ask a teenager for the definition of a slang word that you are obviously too old to know on your own, but at least you will know. Then you can add that word to your vocabulary for future reference. The next time someone tells you that they aren’t capping, you will know exactly what they mean.

Watch a Video

There are some hilarious videos out there of Gen Z kids asking older generations for definitions on their slang words. Instead of taking on the humiliation of admitting that you don’t understand a word, watch other people be humiliated for the same lack of knowledge from the comfort of your home. Not only are these videos entertaining, but you will get to hear from members of Gen Z what each word means and how exactly to use it.

Getting Started

Keeping up with slang is something that you need to do regularly if you want to be fully in the know. As we mentioned previously, this generation moves fast when it comes to trends. It seems like every week there are more words and terms that we have to google. We are going to get you started with some of the most popular current slang terms, but this could change week to week. For now, here are some of the most popular Gen Z slang terms that you should know:
Basic: Used to describe someone who is unoriginal or follows mainstream trends. This is how you use it in a sentence: “That girl’s style is so basic.”
Bet: Means I agree, or I acknowledge what you are saying. If someone makes a statement that you agree with, you can reply by just saying “bet”.
Bop: Used to refer to a song that you really enjoy or has an infectious beat. For example, “the new Beyonce song is a bop.”
Cap: If someone replies to a statement you made with “no cap?” or “are you capping?” they are essentially asking are you for real? If someone says “he is capping” then they are saying he is lying.
Drag: To criticize or make fun of someone or something. When gossiping someone may say “you are dragging her.”
Drip: If someone is talking about your drip, then they are referring to your style in a positive way. If someone wants you to look at someone’s outfit you will hear “check out her drip.”
High-Key: Use in place of “very” or “really”. For example, “I high-key love that store.”
I’m Dead or I’m Deceased: Gen Z’s version of LOL or LMFAO. It means that they find something particularly hilarious.
Keep in mind that these are just a few of the thousands of terms that Gen Z has come up with to help them navigate the world. If you want to really learn the slang and keep up with the times, you are going to have to do a little more recon work than this. But don’t despair, Gen Z won’t be the youngest generation forever. Wait until they have to figure out what the up-and-coming generation will throw at them. Best of luck Gen Z!

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