shutterstock_175225310There is nothing that says “old” more than conversing with someone several decades less ancient than you, and having absolutely no idea what they’re talking about.  The grammar and syntax seem familiar,  but the actual words may as well be Urdu.  This could bring tears to the eyes even to those among us with Twitter accounts.

So, as a public service to my cohorts on the upper end of the age spectrum, in an effort to keep everyone well-informed and au courant,  I present below my second annual “English As A Second Language” self-test.   As much as I would like to credit myself for having  invented this new jargon, the words were actually selected from among the 1,500 new entries into the Oxford English Dictionary.    Have fun!


a) A monkey in a preppy sweater
b) A cross between a vanilla bean and a grape
c) A spelling error committed by the dyslexic man who comes to resurface your driveway.
d) Some of the above


a) A part of a man’s anatomy that no longer hangs straight, but tends to lean to one side
b) A mouthwash that makes you laugh
c) A new type of frozen treat
d) None of the above


a) A veterinarian that treats only beasts of burden
b) Places where you park your yaux
c) Something you eat with your dagel
d) All of the above


a) Sylvester Stallone calling his friend Lola
b) A yoyo that can’t get off the ground
c) A depressed Latino
d) A and B, or maybe not


a) Ricky Ricardo asking Fred Mertz for an explanation
b) A “for men only” grassy area
c) A male ordering an egg cream without the milk and chocolate syrup
d) I’d like to buy a vowel, please.


a) Nickname for the comedienne who used to work with Sid Caeser
b) An electronic moji
c) An item at a sushi bar
d) You’ve got to be kidding!


a) An aquatic mammal that wanted to be a dolphin but decided to remain as he was
b) Taking another photo of a cat, but in a different position
c) Asking someone to marry, changing your mind, then asking again
d) I don’t have time for this nonsense.


a) The act of sanitizing one’s purse
b) Paper or plastic?
c) A place for old people to shower
d) I’ll take “European history” for $800, Alex


a) A worm with loose dentures
b) An underage “tsk-er”
c) Your seatbelt pretending to close, but then switching to “open”
d) A; definitely A


a) Title name on a Broadway marquee when they ran out of “a”s
b) Half a memory
c) Peter Sellers describing a performer who doesn’t speak
d) Enough already!

Bonus Question:


a) The yearnings of a Russian speaker
b) The yearnings of a Polish speaker
c) An English speaker imitating the yearnings of a Russian andor Polish speaker
d) I vant this to end right now!

Interpreting Your Score:

0 – 4     Best to stay inside your gated community
5 – 7     OK to talk to people age 50 and over
8 – 10   Congratulations!  You have been approved to converse with millenials.

If you care, here are the real answers.  1) Vape:  inhaling vapor from an e-cigarette; 2) Listicle:  internet bullet-point list; 3) Dox:  personal information getting out on the internet; 4) YOLO:  You Only Live Once; 5) Mansplain:  boorish man needing to correct what a woman says; 6) Emoji:  A picture used in electronic communication to denote an emotion or expression; 7) Repurpose:  to change something so that it can be used for a different purpose; 8) Douchebaggery:  Obnoxious or contempible behavior; 9) Clickbait:  Attractive link on the internet used to tempt readers to click on it; 10) Meme:  An idea, behavior, or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.  Bonus Question: Vishing:  phony phone call attempting to acquire personal information.

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