That pesky generation gap

A student sent me an email the day after she delivered a speech in one of my classes.
She wanted to explain she had a better conclusion planned but there was a last-minute technical difficulty.
Her speech was about how to teach your dog tricks and she had recorded a video of her dog performing the ones she taught him, only to discover at the last minute that it would not play.
If that was the case, I wrote back, the audience (meaning the other students in the class, along with me) had no idea. She crafted a fine conclusion to wrap up a very good speech. And she did it on the fly. I was impressed.
I told her just that in my response. I wrote that I sympathized with her dilemma and complimented the way she handled it. She should have been pleased with my message. And she would have been, if only I had not turned into my Sixties’ self when writing it.
See, I began my return email with the word “Bummer.”
“Bummer,” I wrote. “I hate when things like that happen.”
She has no idea what I meant.
How could she? I was saying “bummer” in 1968. She was born in 2001.
I went online in search of today’s slang for disappointment. What is the 2020 version of “bummer”?
I found two:
“Soul sucking” and “Butt-hurt”.
Really?
If you ask me, they’re both bummers.




Ed Ackerman