What Are You Even Saying, Dude?

By Karley Bailey, Destiny Gomez, and Nayeli Medina

Slang has been incorporated into the way we speak since the beginning of time. It seems that each year new words are created and integrated into modern society. Honestly, most of us don’t even know what half of these words mean. We just say them to keep up with the status quo. Would you still say these words if you actually knew what they meant?

Dude – literal meaning – Dressing fancy.

 Modern definition – A person; synonym for friend.

 Sentence –  “Love nature, dude.”

Swag – literal meaning – A curtain or piece of fabric fastened to hang in a drooping curve.

Modern definition – The supposedly “cool” way someone represents themselves.

Sentence – “My swag gets me good grades.”

Fleek – literal meaning – there is none; kids made this up.

 Modern definition – on point.

 Sentence – “Dang girl! Your eyebrows are on fleek.”

Swerve – literal meaning- Change or cause to change direction abruptly.

Modern definition – To tell someone to go away, rudely.

Sentence – girl: “Hey omg I missed you.”

                boy: “Swerve, I saw you with Jackson.”

Slay – literal meaning – Kill a person or an animal in a violent way.

 Modern definition – To literally be best at what you are doing.

 Sentence – “Yass Lady Gaga, slay that microphone!”

Selfie – literal meaning – Self portrait photography; this word was added to the dictionary.

Modern definition – Taking a picture of yourself with your camera.

Sentence – “Hey guys let’s take a selfie!”

Doe- The literal meaning- A female deer

Modern definition- A cool way to say “though” or to emphasize what you are saying.

Sentence – “Where they at doe?”

I can’t even- Literal meaning- You “can’t even” do what? You technically aren’t ending a sentence by using this phrase.

Modern definition- People say this phrase to emphasize the way they can’t stand something. Usually when you say this phrase you say it with dramatically and with sass.

“I can’t even, omg…”

YASSS- Literal meaning- This isn’t a real word, so it doesn’t have a literal meaning. Teenagers created this word ourselves. Slay teens, slay!!

Modern definition- A word teenagers use to express their happiness or emotions. When someone  says “YASS” you know something good is about to come out of their mouth.


Killin’ it- Literal meaning- It literally means to murder something.
Modern definition- By saying “killin’ it” you are implying that somebody is beast at something, or that they rock at life.

“She’s killin’ it.”

Bae-Literal meaning- acronym for “before anyone else”

Modern meaning- another word for “babe” or something you call you your best friend.

“Okay bae, I love you.”

Turn up- literal meaning- adjust volume or brightness.

Modern meaning- Party your butt off.


Ratchet-Literal meaning-a mechanism consisting of such a bar or wheel with the pawl.

Modern meaning-A diva, mostly from urban cities and ghettos. (An insult)

Sentence- “Dang that girl ratchet!”



6 Comments Add yours

  1. Sarah Nuha says:

    This is something we all need to read. I don’t use slang that much, so I don’t understand half of the things that come out of my friends’ mouth. It’s true when adults say that us teens “slay” the English language. This was really well-written and “on point” with a message. Thank you.

  2. Jocelyn Gutierrez says:

    I love how this off the back caught my attention & the pictures where a really nice touch ! I really enjoyed this article because it was relatable and informative .

  3. Colleen Cleary says:

    good article! It makes me rethink about the words I say and what they really mean and how they affect others.

  4. Colleen Cleary says:

    Good article! It makes me rethink about the words I say and what they mean and how they affect others.

  5. Arlen Villeda says:

    This is a well observed article. I personally use slang time to time, especially in text messaging. I think its just a quick & exciting way of approaching a conversation or conversing with one another. Its just for fun. Although grammar is important, I’m sure most of us will outgrow this “slang” as we mature.

  6. Kevin Galicia says:

    This is a well written article. Oneself, I utilize the context of “slang” in a matter of recreation and tranquility.

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