April 16, 2024
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Nice Jewish Girl Talk: A Guide to the Diction of Our Youth

This guide is a must for anyone looking to improve or create relationships with Jewish millennials.

While talking to my friends, I’ve noticed that we say some phrases that are atypical to most. They are totally normal to us as they are part of our language, but for anyone on the outside looking in, they can be confusing. Here is a list of common phrases that can be heard among millennial, Orthodox Jewish girls.

Bugging out: The experience of having constant anxious feelings towards a cataclysmic life occurrence, for example, the chipping of a freshly painted manicure, having all of your flowy skirts being washed at the same time or not coming across your favorite sushi roll at the Grand and Essex display. The term “bug out” can also be used and is synonymous for a freak out or panic attack.

Ex: Oh my God! I’m bugging out, I wore this dress to shul last week and I can’t find anything new to wear to Leora’s vort!

Not the type: Something which is not characteristic of one’s typical behavior or style. An event or social situation that does not make sense.

Ex: It’s so not the type that I would care if she didn’t make me her bridesmaid because we’re just not that close.

It’s a thing: Something which is commonly done or considered socially acceptable. An established societal norm or habit. The phrase “It’s not a thing” means the complete opposite and is something that would be considered a social faux pas.

Ex: When I’m in your shul next Shabbat is it a thing to wear heels or it’s just not the type?

Shtuss: A description. Something ridiculous, unacceptable or bizarre.

Ex: Do you think I’m going to believe that shtuss? She didn’t come to my birthday party because she was studying for her stat final? No one studies for stat.

What’s the matziv?: A question that can be used to determine what exactly is going on.

Ex: What’s the matziv with tomorrow? Are we all seeing a movie or just hanging out at my house?

Interesting: This word is used by Jewish girls in a different way than the Webster Dictionary uses it. It is meant to describe something as strange, awkward or unappealing. This word is generally used in a condescending fashion.

Ex: That outfit choice is just so interesting, who knew it was a thing to mix patterns like that?

I’m not down: This phrase is used to suggest disinterest in an event. Alternatively, I’m down would mean that I am ready and excited to participate in such an event.

Ex: I’m so not down for this chemistry review tonight. I would much rather be chilling with you guys.

Literally: This term is used in the opposite fashion in which the Webster Dictionary employs it. It is used in a hyperbolic fashion by Jewish girls near and far.

Ex: I’m literally famished and if I don’t eat something right now I’m going to pass out.

So off: Something or someone that does not abide by social norms or expectations.

Ex: The fact that she only texted me on my birthday is so off. She’s one of my best friends, you would think she would at least call.

Kills me: A term used to describe the great extent to which someone considers something to be beyond hysterical to the point that they would all but die from laughter.

Ex: You’re just too much. The way you imitate our Jewish history teacher just kills me.

It’s not shayach: It is not meant to be. This can, of course, refer to a shidduch but it can also describe a situation that is rendered as such. The opposite phrase would be it’s bashert, meaning that something or someone fits perfectly.

Ex: I can’t be a bio major, it’s just so not shayach because I hate all of the sciences.

By Mairav Linzer

 Mairav Linzer is a rising Senior at Stern College for Women. She is working this summer as an intern for the Jewish Link.

 

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