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The Gen Z Glossary: Which words to keep, which words to trash

The term millennial is no longer a synonym for teenagers. Last 2019, millennials finally transcended into the early tito/tita stages of their lives. Although local media outlets and noontime variety shows still call young people “millennials,” the truth is: all of them are now young adults.

Let’s face it—Gen Z kids are dominating youth culture right now. From e-kids fashion and VSCO girls to the rise of TikTok stars, we are everywhere and so is our linggo. In this edition of The Gen Z Glossary, we’re upgrading our internet vocab by learning new terms and unlearning outdated ones.

Words to trash

Ok, boomer \ō-ˈkā ˈbü-mər\ (adverb)

We already made our point, folks. Boomers can be pushed to a point where any insult towards them can be misconstrued as a slur. Let’s not overuse it. Its legacy belongs in 2019.

Woke \wōk\ (adjective)

It is used to alert injustices in our society. Nowadays, it is just ruined by the toxic parts of call-out culture. It easily went as a term used by black activists to a taunt used by self-righteous watchdogs, waiting for you to stumble on Twitter. It’s unfortunate how the word lost its weight and power throughout the years. But who knows? Maybe 2020 will be the year where it is replaced by a new jargon?

Clout \ˈklau̇t\ (noun)

The term clout is used for someone who has influence. That, and it’s mostly used by anyone who wants attention and engagement in social media. So guess what we’re killing this 2020? The notion of clout chasing and influencer culture.

Read more: The Millennial Glossary 2018: Which words to keep, which words to trash

Sana all \sa-ˈnaˈˈȯl\ (adverb)

If we try hard enough, we can kill hugot culture at the start of this decade. So why not start with the phrase sana all? Sana all is the Filipino equivalent of saying relationship goals. Let’s start abandoning the idea that romantic relationships will complete us as individuals. Start calling it, make 2020 your year.

Ghosting \ˈɡōstiNG\ (noun)

The most painful of saying goodbye to a partner is by not saying anything at all. Last year, the word was everywhere. We then slowly realize how we’ve known the act for so long, but never the term for it. Still, let’s not give the act any more power by making the term prominent. No more ghosting in 2020—the word and the act, please.

Read more: An esports glossary straight from the computer shop

Words to keep

Sksksksk (interjection)

Does the classic onomatopoeia hahaha have a contender? Why, yes it does. Meet sksksksk: it’s used to express amazement, shock and/or excitement. It rose in 2017 and gained notoriety in 2019. It’s either used ironically or unironically, depending on if being ironic is something you still care about.

Sco pa tu manaa \skoh-pah-too-mah-nah\ (adverb)

Also known as the better version of bomboclaat. It came from Hawaiian slang and it has two meanings: “What experience does this remind you of?” and, “I’ll hit you.” The former is what Twitter urchins often use, captioning it to images or retweets, urging their followers to share experiences or stories associated with their content.

Cyst or siszt \ˈsist\ (noun)

From “Rupaul’s Drag Race” Season 11 contestant Soju, cyst or siszt are used as terms of endearment for your real 1z out there. It’s bes revamped, since teleseryes decided to overuse it until it loses meaning. It still rolls off the tongue and isn’t cringy just yet. Just how we like ‘em.

Read more: F*ck-it Expense: The reality of youth spending on short-term happiness

Shoot your shot \ˈshüt yər ˈshät\ (adverb)

Also known as, taking your goddamn opportunities. This is the enemy of sana all. If sana all is all about aspiration, shooting your shot is all about working hard for your goals and earning it. And what better way to start your 2020 than retaining this phrase in your vocab bank?

Coin \koin\ (noun)

Get that coin is the newest version of getting bread. Working hard for those coins is all about the hustle, hard work, and all the drama of thriving in our everyday lives. If we can carry this vibe throughout the new decade, then we are down to keeping this term for another year ’round (’till a better term comes up).

Stan \ˈstan\ (noun)

It’s a replacement term for a fanbase’s OGs. As fandom culture continues to dominate pop culture, stan seems to be aging quite well. Stan even got in Merriam-Webster’s as an official entry last year. So to the ones who don’t stan the word stan, this ain’t your year. Stan is not going away anytime soon.

Art by Cathy Dizon


Rogin Losa
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