Can We Guess How Old You Are and How Old You Act Based on the Words You Use?

LIFESTYLE

Emily Maggrett

6 Min Quiz

Image: Luis Alvarez / DigitalVision / Getty Images

About This Quiz

Think all American English speakers use the same language? Think again! A Cajun chef and a Maine lobster fisherman use the same words in very different ways. Almost as stark is the gulf between a marketing executive's jargon-y English, full of buzzwords like "micro-targeting," and a Pennsylvania Dutch grandmother's vocabulary, which may be sprinkled with a light dusting of German.

Whether your version of English features Yiddish, CB radio code, AAVE or Twitter abbreviations like "TIL," the words you choose to express yourself can say a lot about your background, indicating the region where you live (or come from), your profession, your hobbies and more. But the biggest thing your language tells other people is what your age is: Gen X, Gen Z, baby boomers and millennials have some epic slang differences!

Of course, not all 22-year-olds or 45-year-olds speak the same. For instance, 45-year-old actress Kate Beckinsale probably talks quite differently than a 45-year-old Minnesota mom who homeschools her kids. Conversely, a 19-year-old majoring in the Classics may talk more like an 80-year-old man than like one of his SoundCloud rapping peers. That's why, in this quiz, we're going to test you on your actual age as well as on how old you sound. Are you ready to find out whether you come across as a whippersnapper, an aging hipster or an old-timer? Let's play!


You watch an episode of "The Walking Dead" where your favorite character dies. Are you feeling "shook"?

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Someone offers you a free ticket to Burning Man. Do you go or are you afraid of getting called a "sparklepony"?

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Have you ever said, "Oh dip"?

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Do you spend an inordinate amount of time pondering how to "get buy-in" from your co-workers?

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Was "50 Shades of Grey" a good movie or did you find it too licentious?

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You're writing a cover letter for a job you hope to snag. Do you promise to give "110 percent"?

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Tell us the truth: after you put a letter in the mail, do you brag on Instagram about your "adulting"?

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Are you a "Buffy" stan?

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If you ask for an update on a project and your manager says, "Let's circle back on that," what they mean is ... ?

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What's "petrichor"?

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Your BFF describes a set of silver stackable rings as being "cute AF." In this case, she's saying ... ?

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After a notable triumph, do you ever exclaim "boo-yah"?

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"The politician engaged in a lengthy _____ about the damage caused by global warming." Can you complete this sentence?

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Your niece complains that a classmate won't stop "trolling" her. This means that the classmate is ... ?

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If a client said, "Could you ballpark me an estimate," you'd think she meant ... ?

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An older mentor says your new boyfriend is "pulchritudinous". What's she saying about him?

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Do. you. ever. type. sentences. like. this. for. emphasis. or. do. you. think. it's. monstrously. annoying?

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Is pumpkin spice "basic," or do you secretly drink pumpkin spice lattes all the time because you enjoy autumnal spices?

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When your coworker mentions that you need to "drill down" on a budget, he means ... ?

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Your best friend's boyfriend is uttering "calumny" against you. Are you angry?

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If someone starts a sentence with "TFW," you understand that to mean ... ?

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Your child is freaking out because they can't find their coat. Do you tell them to stop "bugging"?

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The news reports that a "mistral" is coming. How do you react?

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Your company's CEO says he's prepared to "play hardball" in some upcoming negotiations. You assume he means ... ?

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It's Thursday night. Are you performing "self-care" by applying a facial mask and binge-watching "Scandal"?

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If you call someone "fine," it means that they are ... ?

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What's a "futilitarian"?

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The director of your department asks your team for some "actionable analytics." How do you respond?

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Do you have a "squad"? Who's on it?

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Have you ever described a burrito as being "hella grubbing"?

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