Words of the ’80s


Tanaiya Lake, Copy Editor

Oh, how far we have come from the 1980s, as a gen-z representative, I can tell you first hand some of the many things we have re-used from the ’80s. From fashion to hair, make-up, and even some slang. Although these words are simply just slang we should put them to rest.

“Eat my shorts” was a comeback often used to show your clap-back skills. Also famously known in the show “The Simpsons” from the character Bart Simpson and again in ‘The Breakfast Club’, one of the most iconic movies of the ‘80s. Both the show and movie are still relevant today, unlike this phrase — let’s keep it back in the day.

Next, we have “wig out”, which means to basically go crazy or freak out. This phrase actually started in the 1950s where it had other meanings, then when the ‘80s teens took over the term, that’s how they decided to use it.

Now even if you are a teen today, it’s very likely that you’ve heard someone say “duh” or “no duh”, this is just a replacement for obviously — kind of like the 2000s “OBVI” slang. “Duh” is a tricky word to find its origin; some even say it’s a word in Chinese speech that Americans use now with a different meaning.

Another famous phrase is “talk to the hand”, which, unless you were born in a cave, you might even hear in 2021. People usually say this when they don’t want to talk or hear what the other person has to say, mostly sassy 5-year-olds would give you the hand. No one really knows where this originated. Some people say it was born in the 90s, but the truth is lots of people from the ‘80s used it too.

“OMG, you totally have 3 zits on your forehead, bag your face!” Now “bag your face” is actually really rude and hurtful, but nevertheless a little funny too as it could also be used to tell someone to be quiet. We could all see a Heather telling someone to bag their face. This term came to be in the late ‘80s, but some might even consider it to be ‘90s slang cause it was used during that era too

“Gag me with a spoon”… although this might be a bit of an unthoughtful way to say that something or someone disgusts you, the slang took off in the ’80s, and thankfully it stayed there. All jokes aside this was one of my favorite phrases — it’s a creative way to show disgust, and I’m sure teachers in the ‘80s had fun trying to figure this term out. This phrase is known as “Valley girl” speech which makes sense and is seen as a harsh valley girl burn.

The ’80s was such a beautifully odd time, hope these new or rather old words shed some light on what the typical ’80s member might’ve say.