From The Straits Times    |

Credit: Instagram/@mrmikerosenthal

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but Gen Z has moved on from slang terms such as “It’s giving” (we don’t give anymore, honey, we SERVE) and “Slay” (i.e. saying “slay” to your younger colleague is no longer cool – don’t do it). After all, the internet waits for no one, and if you consider the fact that we’ve been raised on a digital diet of the Internet and social apps, is it any surprise that fresh slang terms crop up with such regularity?

If you work with younger colleagues, you might find that the Gen Z lexicon has even found its way into the workplace. On TikTok, multiple videos have gone viral where users share the snarky sign-offs used by some of their Gen Z coworkers. Rather than traditional closers such as “Sincerely” or “Warm regards”, they prefer email sign-offs like “Yeeting out” or “Bless up”, to name just a few.

With Gen Z bringing phrases of their own to the office table, you can find yourself rather confused when you’re in conversation with them.

Need some help? Here, we share a list of some of the most common phrases and what they (usually) mean. Send this to your colleague who keeps asking you what a “rizz” is. You’re welcome.

Rizz

Oxford’s 2023 Word of the Year is another word for “got game”. A shortened form for “charisma”, “rizz” basically describes one’s ability to attract a romantic interest. If someone “has rizz”, it means that they are super smooth at flirting, when someone has “zero rizz”, it means that for them, charming someone is harder than putting a man on the moon. 

Bonus: If someone is called a “rizzler”, it means that they have impeccable rizz – AKA a pro at flirting with people. (Don’t worry, AKA still stands for ‘also known as’).

Coded

No, this doesn’t mean a secret code. “Coded” basically means when someone or something shares similar traits with something else. For example, if you say an outfit is so “Barbie-coded”, it basically means that the outfit likely pays homage to the doll, whose style is flirty, feminine and very, very pink.

This is also in the same vein as “it’s giving”. So, instead of saying “It’s giving Minions”, you can say “That’s so Minions-coded”.

Ate

Used to describe how someone completely obliterated (in a good way) a look, a performance, or a game. (Nothing to do with consuming a meal). For example, to describe Rihanna’s Super Bowl performance, you can say: “she ate”. Because Gen Z is so creative (thank you), if you’d like to level up your lexicon, you can also use “4+4” (I’d let you figure out why), though people mostly use this in text/comments.

Bonus: “Ate” can be extended to an even longer phrase to further express your admiration: “Ate and left no crumbs.”

W/L 

Shorthand terms that are derived from sports, W means “win” and L means “lose”. When someone simply writes a “W”, it means they’re congratulating someone on their success. It’s the opposite of someone taking an “L”, which means to lose. The terms can apply for a variety of scenarios.

Purr

No, you’re not a cat. Coined by Rolling Ray, an LGBTQIA+ influencer, “Purr” simply means to express approval or excitement about something.

Delulu

This one’s more straightforward: “delulu” is a slang abbreviation of the word “delusional”. The term is commonly used to describe someone who holds overly idealistic fantasies or unrealistic perceptions regarding their particular interest.

Stan

“Stan” rose to popularity in online fan communities – the term originally was a combination of the words “stalker” and “fan”, but it has since become a positive term for fans who are highly supportive and enthusiastic of their favourite celebrities.

Sending me

The expression is commonly used to convey feelings of amusement. When something makes you laugh, you may comment that it is “sending me.”

Serve

Not to be confused with “you got served”, circa-2000, which was used to emphasise how a person was just dissed. “Serve”/”Served”/”Serving” is typically used to describe an individual who has shown up in an iconic way, often in terms of aesthetics.

FR

The ​​acronym for “for real”. Quite literally, fr. 

Sleeping on

A phrase used to describe something or someone that should not be underestimated or missed out on. If someone says “don’t sleep on the 12-3-30 trend”, it means to not give the popular 12-3-30 workout trend a miss. (If you have no clue what the 12-3-30 workout is, read about the trend here.)

Understood the assignment

A phrase that praises someone who went above and beyond in order to successfully nail what they need to do. For example, Jenna Ortega, who played Wednesday Addams in the Netflix show “understood the assignment” with her stellar acting. If a coworker says this to you, it’s akin to them giving you a gold star. 

NGL

The ​​acronym for “not gonna lie”. Essentially, to tell the truth. 

Bussin’

Originating from African-American vernacular as a way of complimenting good food, “bussin” is used to describe something that is really good. If someone tells you that “your beef rendang is bussin’”, congratulations, it means that your beef rendang was awesome.  

No cap

Like FR, think of “no cap” as a synonym for the word “seriously” or “no lie”. In the same vein, “cap” means “lie”. These terms actually originated from the African American community, and actually date back to at least the early 1900s, pre-dating social media and Gen Z by several decades.  

Cheugy

Pronounced “chew-gee”, this Gen-Z term describes cringey things that are considered uncool and not in style, or people who are trying way too hard to be trendy. According to New York Times reporter Taylor Lorenz, the term was coined by 23-year-old student Gaby Rasson before it got popular in a viral TikTok video in 2021. A few things that are considered cheugy: anything emblazoned with the word “#girlboss”, wooden signs with inspirational quotes, and UGG boots.

(If you think this dictionary is complicated, wait till you read about Gen Alpha slang. Gyat, Fanum tax, skibidi…The youngest generation have terms of their own.)