Can You Pass This Gen X Slang Test?


By: Brian Whitney

6 Min Quiz

Image: drbimages / E+ / Getty Images

About This Quiz

Gen X is the generation wedged in between the baby boomers and the millennials. Some people think that Generation X is the coolest generation going, while others aren't quite such big fans of people in this age group. No matter what you think of the actual generation, you have to admit that their slang was the absolute best. A lot of this slang has gone by the wayside, never to be heard again. I mean, when's the last time you heard someone say, "Talk to the hand"? But a whole lot of this slang is still around today. If you know it, then you have some instant street cred with people of all ages, and if you don't, well ...

What's your knowledge of Generation X slang? Because you know back in the day all Gen X slang was bangin'. Are you down with knowing the definitions of "trippin'," "schwing," "dope," "fly," "peace out," "punked," "score" and many more? If so, then "word." 

So, dude, what are you waiting for? Are you ready to get crackalackin' and take this quiz and show off your totally radical knowledge of Gen X slang? Sweet! If you do well, then feel free to say, "booyah."

If someone tells a woman, "You go, girl," what are they trying to do?

"You go, girl" is either meant as encouragement to say that someone can do something, or it is meant as agreement. This phrase was probably first said by the comedian Martin Lawrence, on his show "Martin."


Someone that yells "yoink" is probably doing what?

The slang word "yoink" is exclaimed when someone steals something. Of course, that's only when the theft is a joke - real thieves rarely yell "yoink" at the top of their lungs.


What is another way to say, "yadda yadda yadda"?

"Yadda yadda yadda" has been used for a long time as a phrase that means meaningless chatter, but it really took off during the Generation X years. It isn't used as an insult, but just for fun.


In '90s slang, if someone says "word" after someone else speaks, what are they doing?

The phrase "word" originally came from saying that your word is your bond, and it was shortened to just "word." If you say this, it means you're in complete agreement with whatever is going on.


If someone was "wigging out" in class, what was that person doing?

Back in the day when men wore wigs, they potentially fell off in a fight, which is where the common phrase "flip your wig" came from. "Wigging out" is a variation of this older slang.


If you call your girlfriend your "wifey," what are you saying?

While your wife is always your wife, you aren't necessarily married to your "wifey." This word just means that you're in a serious relationship with a woman, and she's always there for you.


In what part of the country do those in Generation X use the word "wicked" to describe something that's not evil?

No matter what generation you're in, you may not hear the word "wicked" used to mean "cool" in most parts of the country. But if you're a Gen X New Englander and you like something, you might call it "wicked cool."


If an emo band is "wack," what are they?

This word has been around for a long time, as in saying that something is "out of whack" or not quite right. Gen X shortened this to just "wack" with no H, describing something is bad, awful or just generally not good.


What does it mean if someone gets a "vibe"?

While the word "vibe" has been around for a very long time, it really got popular with the Generation X crew. You can have a good vibe, a bad vibe or really any kind of vibe you want.


You stayed out late, and now your significant other is "trippin'." What are they doing?

If you're trippin', you're freaking right out. You might be losing it over nothing, or you might be losing it over something important. Either way, if you're trippin' it isn't good.


Some of the clothes back in the '80s and '90s were "tight." What were they?

If something was "tight," there was nothing bad about it. Whether it be a movie, a new jacket or a haircut, if something was tight it was good, without a doubt.


If a new acquaintance seems "shady," what does that mean?

The word "shady" is fairly simple when it comes to slang. While the light lets a person see everything, whether good or bad, something that is "shady" is more in the dark, therefore untrustworthy.


The band TLC didn't want no "scrubs." Why not?

The word "scrub" was already around, but the band TLC made it blow up with one of their songs. After they sang that they didn't want no "scrubs," all sorts of people started saying it. A scrub can be a person who is broke or who just lacks skills.


Someone just gave you "props" - what are they giving you?

This slang word means "proper respect." It is never a bad thing when someone gives you "props." This slang word was used a lot in hip-hop culture.


If a woman has a boyfriend who is a "player," is that good?

A "player" isn't just a guy that is really smooth with women, it's a guy who tends to cheat and is dishonest as well. No woman wants to be going out with a player; it never turns out well.


In Gen X slang, what's another word for "phat"?

This phrase became very popular in the late '80s and early '90s, originally in hip-hop culture. It means something is really good or someone is attractive. It is a variation of the word "fat."


If a man is carrying a "piece," what does he have?

The word "piece" became popular as Generation X slang for a gun or firearm, but this slang term has been around forever. It has been used in England for the same purpose for years.


What do the initials "O.G." stand for?

The slang term "O.G" stands for "original gangster," but it isn't used very often when it comes to someone who is in an actual gang. This slang term just means someone who is old school.


If a new song is "off the hook," what is it?

For people of all ages, when you're freed from some sort of obligation you don't want to do, you're said to be "off the hook." Gen Xers take the phrase further, using it to describe pretty much anything that's good in life.


Someone in a group of friends is a "narc." What does that mean?

Like lots of slang words, this one started as a real word and transformed into something a bit different. "Narc" used to describe someone who was an undercover law enforcement agent, but in Gen X slang it just means someone who will tell your secrets.


A famous person is "keeping it real." What's he doing?

Like many slang terms of this time, this one became almost a parody of itself and turned into a joke. Someone who is "keeping it real" is acting in a truly authentic way and not as a poser.


If a woman is wearing some new "ice," what does she have?

The word "ice" is usually a slang term for a diamond, but not always. It can be used for any sort of jewelry that looks like it might be expensive, even if it isn't.


Bill is your "homie," so what is he to you?

This is a take-off on the slang term "homeboy." A "homie" originally described someone's good friend from the same hometown, but later came to mean any good friend.


In '90s slang, what's your "hood"?

The word "hood," sometimes spelled "'hood," is just a shorter way of saying "neighborhood." But like other Generation X slang, it just sounds so much cooler. This phrase is still used sometimes.


Which of these choices is most similar to the slang word "hella"?

The word "hella" was used way more on the West Coast than the East Coast, where it never really caught on. It basically means "very." For example, someone could say, "That taco was hella good."


In Gen X slang, what is "grindage"?

This phrase was used a lot by the comedian Pauly Shore, who also was known as "The Weasel." "Grindage" means any sort of food that is good; it comes from the thought of teeth grinding down food.


If you think that someone you just met is "frontin'," how are they acting?

If someone is "frontin'," they're just being fake to you. In other words, they're trying to show you something to your front that they wouldn't be showing behind your back.


If you're "fiending" for pizza, what are you doing?

If you are really dying for something, you're "fiending" for it. You could be fiending for a burrito, or you could be fiending to play World of Warcraft because you have a big raid to do.


Two people are "dissing" each other in a conversation - what are they doing?

If you're "dissing" someone, you're being rude or blowing them off - basically not being nice. This one seems complicated, but it really is just a shortening of the word "disrespecting."


You're at a party, and you decide to "dip." What did you do?

The word "dip" is used in a few different ways. One is for chewing tobacco, but that isn't a Gen X thing at all, because dip is nasty. In Gen X slang, if you decide to leave an event, you decide to "dip."


A player just "clowned" his coach during a timeout. What did he do?

While there are a lot of people that simply don't like clowns, the point is that clowns are supposed to make people laugh. "Clowning" just means to make fun of something, either in a joking way or as an insult.


What are you making if you're making "cheddar"?

There are all sorts of slang words for money, like "bread," "dough" and "cheese" - and "cheddar." Maybe all of these food-related words stand for money because back in the day all people had was bread and cheese to eat.


Someone who is uncomfortable in a social situation might "bounce." What would they be doing?

When a ball bounces, it might go in any direction and wind up anywhere. If a person is going to "bounce," they're going someplace else.


If a used car is a "beater," how good might it be?

When someone buys a really bad car, the thought is that at least they don't have to take good care of it and no one will try to steal it. This is true with a car that is all beat up. In other words, an old car in bad shape is a "beater."


A new burrito place just opened up, and it's "the bomb." What is it like?

In most cases, something that is a "bomb" wouldn't be good, but that's what's so funny about slang: sometimes a word takes on its opposite meaning. If something is blowing up like a bomb, then it's a good thing for sure.


Explore More Quizzes

About HowStuffWorks Play

How much do you know about dinosaurs? What is an octane rating? And how do you use a proper noun? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks Play is here to help. Our award-winning website offers reliable, easy-to-understand explanations about how the world works. From fun quizzes that bring joy to your day, to compelling photography and fascinating lists, HowStuffWorks Play offers something for everyone. Sometimes we explain how stuff works, other times, we ask you, but we’re always exploring in the name of fun! Because learning is fun, so stick with us!