Slinging Slang from the Flappers to the Rappers The alphaDictionary Slang Generation Checkup
Do you spend scads of money on cold cream, hair dye, and other cosmetic effects, then let your language give away your age? To be sure the way you speak does not betray your age, you should take Dr. Goodword's Slang Generation Checkup below and find out in which era the slang you use comes from.
Slang is not at all the same as accent. Your accent is a regional dialect that can be measured by instruments like our Rebel-Yankee Test. Slang is time-sensitive, it comes and goes over varying stretches of time. Speakers tend to up-date their slang with the latest making it is impossible to pinpoint someone's age by the slang they use. However, we can ascertain the general era in which an expression was most popular and let you know how up-to-date your slang is.
Slang a kind of code, the use of words with unexpected meanings known only by those in on it (see "What is Slang" by Dr. Goodword.) Although slang is associated with youth culture, especially youth music culture, you find it in many other segments of society—racing slang, sports slang, group usually defined in terms of age.
We hope that this test will serve two purposes: (1) to acquaint you with the changes in American slang over the decades of the 20th century and (2) let you know to which era the slang you use reflects. It essentially tests how up-to-date the slang you use is.
This is the beta version and we will, no doubt, have to do further fine tuning. So, if you have any suggestions as to how we might hone it further, please click here and let us know how you feel on our contact page.
All the examples in this test were taken from alphaDictionary's Historical Dictionary of American Slang. If you are interested in the changes in slang over time, you might want to spend some time there. You can set the dates, say, 1920-1930, and get the slang of the 20s. You can also set the meaning, say "to leave", and get all the slang expressions for "to leave" over the decades of 20th century and into the 21st. It is fun and educational and, best of all, it is absolutely free. Have fun!
Choose the term or group of terms that best represent the words used by those of your generation when you were in high school or college (HS-college) to express the meaning in the question. If more than one applies, choose the most recent, the newest for your era.
Discuss accents and dialects with others. Now you can talk with others who have taken our test about the slang of your generation and theirs. You might want to talk about other topics, too, at our Alpha Agora.