Teen talk.

I was skimming through articles on Yahoo! when a title gave me an involuntary laugh: “How to understand ‘Teen Talk'”.  Yes, there are different intonations, phrases, word choices, etc. that can clue an individual in to the REAL meaning behind a statement or phrase, but really, should there be this type of dictionary article that gives you then ins-and-outs of popular and often used comments like “fine” and “and, yeah…”.  But as I was going through the article, hoping to sarcastically make jabs at the idiocy of this type of reading, I started getting a little flushed, began feeling my heart rate quicken and realized that I was beginning to panic about future discussions I could have with a son or daughter.  I remember being the teen, but as I was reading the phrases and all too exact meanings this author chose to give them, I kept thinking, “Well, yes, but…” and “Once they grow up…”.  I always used to think that since my parents had been through the teenage years themselves that they had to understand the emotional upheavals, the drastic lows and soaring highs, the anger and mentality that other immature teens hand out, so why did they have to ask so many questions and how come they never took MY side of an argument.  But here’s the thing, sitting here and reading this article about understanding “teen talk” made me realize that with time there is distance and maturity.  And more likely than not, when my teen is mouthing off or giving involuntary or voluntary clues to their inner-workings, will I be able to pick up on them?  Will I need a book or an article telling me what “fine” really means.  Well, maybe not “fine” because let’s face it, it is a universal way of showing people that everything is NOT fine.  But I have once again experienced a moment where I can see where I was and compare it to where I am.  I am growing up.  That’s so scary.

4 thoughts on “Teen talk.

    • Stephanie Anne says:

      That’s part of art though. Something that is ever changing. The reason it is becoming more controversial, though, is not because of the artists, it’s because of what is being allowed. The standards for what is vulgar have been slowly falling, meaning more and more things are becoming common. Swear words and lascivious behavior in movies, music, photography, everything, have been becoming more frequent in popular culture. And, it’s not just rap, it’s all genres of music. There are crude remarks, sexually explicit notions in rock songs and other pop songs. “3” by Britney Spears is about having a threesome, there is some rock song that was frequently played at my old work about what someone does under the sheets and it was a not-so veiled reflection on oral sex. But let me also state that I do not believe in censorship. Especially in art form. Who is to say that the artist is not hyperbolically using these crude images in order to prove a point? How can we wish for things to be monotonous when every single one of us is different? How can we claim to encourage our youth to be themselves when we are asking pop culture to work within strictures that do not allow freedom of expression? It’s a difficult argument. I am only 24, and obviously time changes things, but I have always maintained a very liberal view on this subject. I do not believe that anyone can have run of the mill and spout off politically incorrect, racist, sexist ideals, but at the same time, I do not believe in censorship at all. I don’t have to listen to the vulgar things if I so choose, but at the same time if we dissuade anyone from speaking their minds not only will nothing new be created, but we are encouraging “underground” behavior, which adds a whole new list of issues.

  1. Nathan Marcello Rotunda says:

    I don’t think censorship is the solution. I think the problem is that artists are getting lazy. I liked listening to old motown and rock that you have to think about it for a second before you realize they are talking about sex. Artist seem to take shortcuts in that respect.

    • Stephanie Anne says:

      I don’t think it’s just the artists. People in general are looking for very direct images and thoughts. We are a generation of “now, now, now,” and it will only get worse. Almost every person now has some type of musical device, some type of e-reader, and some type of high tech phone where internet, e-mail, and every other application is in the palm of our hands. How can we expect people to be witty and subversive and want that when everything else is so readily available? It’s definitely not just the artists, it’s the people who look at the art, listen to the art, and desire the art. And I am pretty sure that it will continue in that vein. Unless there is some massive technological melt down. I guess anything is possible.

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