Dear Lucy:
I was invited to a reader’s group to spill the tea. What the heck and why would I ruin their tablecloth on purpose?  Sincerely, Spiller?


Dear Spiller with a question mark:

You dress up in your best tea-drinking finery. There’ll be no actual spilling going on. Urban Dictionary tells us spilling the tea does not necessarily mean a ruined tabletop. It’s a current term for telling juicy gossip. As many of you have noticed, young people these days say some pretty wacky things. Did you know that Gucci (or gooch) can refer to something other than a handbag? (I had to Google that one.) In my day, people mostly said groovy or peace out, but now we’ve got new phrases. So I scrolled through Instagram and Twitter and Facebook (although young people don’t really use Facebook anymore, can you believe it?) to investigate these words and where they come from. Here are some popular terms explained.
 
Basic:
Starting off with the most basic of phrases, the word basic means much more than simple. When people refer to someone as basic, they are essentially calling that person average. For instance, a basic millennial is someone who fits every stereotype of a millennial (excessively using Snapchat and spending much of their time at Starbucks yet also being too broke to afford an apartment).
 
Boujee:
Not to be confused with the French word bourgeois although that’s likely how it originated and it is pronounced the same way. The word boujee essentially refers to anything snooty or rich. For instance, a middle-aged columnist who spends all her time drinking tea. Oh wait.
 
I’m dead:
If someone says this to you, you don’t need to call 911. Unless they look like they’re actually in pain. If someone says to you “I’m dead,” it means you said or did something so hilarious that they are actually at a loss for words. This could also mean they came across something so absurd and ridiculous they are unsure how to react. Similarly, people might use the phrase “I’m shook” although I personally prefer the former for grammatical reasons. But that’s just me.
 
Lit:
Awesome, cool, fantastic. This can be used for anything really, even as a standalone word. Yesterday the cashier told me the broccoli was on sale and I said “lit” instead of thank you. He looked at me a little strangely, but then I figured he had a few decades on him.
 
Well, that’s it for now, but hopefully you learned something about the crazy things young people say. You can safely use these terms in your YA novel writing. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go make sure my eyebrows are on fleek.
 
See you in a hot minute,
Lucy Leaf