Social Question

Trillian's avatar

I need some ideas for what late teen and early twenty girls discuss?

Asked by Trillian (21106points) July 30th, 2010

This is a covert operation that is part of a study for a class. I have to be able to talk to late teenage or early twenty year old girls in their jargon, or at least be able to understand their terminology.
I have ignored reality tv since it came out and now it seems like I should have paid attention.
Who is this Snooky person? Who is Tequila? She looks like a filthy whore to me, but apparently people like her. Is Big Brother “The” show to watch?
What is important to a teenaged girl? My youngest is eleven and can’t help me. My son is seventeen but is oblvious to the whole thing. He’s an honor student and has his head in his college/career plans. Any ideas about things of importance along with explanations would be greatly appreciated. Where do they like to go? What do they like to do? What drinks are popular now? Do they do drugs? Are they casual or conservative about sex?

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22 Answers

Blackberry's avatar

Snooky is the woman from the show on MTV ‘The Jersey Shore’ that was punched in the face by a man for being loud and annoying at a bar, I don’t know much about Tila. I think you just have to know about random fashion reality shows. I hear many young women talking about ‘who was talking shit last night,’ or ‘was he/she talking shit?’ etc. There’s a lot of shit talking within this demographic apparently.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Your hosed from the get go. No one understands teens. Tila had a dating show that alternated between her having sex with women and men, best I can do. At least she didn’t discriminate.

Trillian's avatar

@Blackberry that helps, thanks! you added another dimension that I had overlooked.
have you seen the commercial where the two guys are talking and the one says “How sick are the apps?” You can tell that this is not something that this man would normally say, it was scripted to appeal to a certain demographic group. (Not mine, obviously) I have to rethink this whole thing. Speech patterns….. I may have to end up watching reality tv after all.

Facade's avatar

I was going to express my offense to this question, but then I realized I’m in the minority group when it comes to these things, so I’ll refrain and just say what I know.
Yes, they probably do drugs, but most just drink alcohol to excess. Most are also casual about sex.

Watching reality tv will definitely help you out as far as understanding word usage, but I would try to talk like them, they’ll make fun of you =)

Trillian's avatar

@Facade Did you read my comment above? I would never try to use an expression that didn’t comenaturally, as it “sounds wrong”.
Thank you for taking the time to answer me.
I wonder what the ratio is of teens and twenties who are “partiers” (for lack of a better term) to those who are not. And how much overlap there is…. Maybe I should talk to some of the girls on my son’s tennis team.
I can’t imagine what one could find offensive about a question that is an attempt to learn and understand unless one were the type of person who is looking for things to be offended about.

Chrissi85's avatar

I work with young people (although I am pretty much ‘young people’ myself) and I tend to find they really don’t like it when you try hard to ‘identify’ with them. I generally just natter away, without making references to pop culture unless it’s something I actually know and like, otherwise I just laugh it off ‘Ahh, I’m probably too old for that!’ which they tend to find quite amusing, as I am not much older than them. Personally, and I am 25, I think Big Brother is mindless rubbish, I don’t take drugs, I do drink a bit, and am in a serious relationship. Don’t underestimate the girls, they may be a lot more together and discerning than the media gives them credit for =) be yourself and they are more likely to open up, and you can have a good giggle comparing their slang to what you used to use. It can be pretty fun, and quite enlightening

Trillian's avatar

Not trying to “identify” with them, just looking for insights and answers, trends and generalizations, speech patterns… Maybe I was unclear or misrepresented myself in the question. I need to have general ideas abut how these girls feel about things. What they know and feel about current events, figures in the news. Do they know who the Dalai Lama is? Who is the president of France? I’d hate to think they were all like the ones I see on “Jaywalking”. That’s were I conceived the idea, and it seemed like a good project. At the time…

Chrissi85's avatar

Ah right, well maybe the best thing to do is get a kinda brainstorming session going with them

jfos's avatar

To my knowledge, most late teens and early twenties girls are not worldly or up-to-date on current events. Dalai Lama, Sarkozy, Mousavi, Karzai, Darfur… I doubt most of them would be able to describe any of these. Maybe they would know that there is an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, because it is a huge national issue.

EDIT: American girls, that is.

Trillian's avatar

@jfos I forgot about you! You are probably the perfect one to ask. Take those two wth you. I mean, not literally. If you did, I don’t want to know. ...
Anyway, are they ditzy? If you called one on the phone, what would she say to you? Would she tell you about her nail polish and the new shoes she just got?
Maybe I need to log into some chatrooms and lurk. Do you know any? I’d really like to see or hear some plain old conversations. That might give me a better idea…

jfos's avatar

@Trillian The two females in my picture (one ex-girlfriend and one friend) are actually bad examples for the average early twenties girl. They’re both very smart. They might talk about shoes or dresses or parties, but they could also discuss worldly issues or high-calibur controversial topics.

If they were talking to each other, it would most likely be either drama-esque gossip about friends, classmates, housemates, etc., or laughing about something funny from a movie or TV show.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Teens and young people, in reality, care about the same things as they’ve always cared about and this is regardless of gender – how to ‘be real’, how to feel love, how they compare to others and how they want to be special in the future. Because teen girls are socialized to find value in looks and in men, you can’t go wrong talking about those things but if you want meaning, talk to them about their future or about something in life that’s bs and how it made you feel – people connect to genuine emotion. You can ask them ‘if they really knew you, what would they see?’..and let it be open. Also, like @Facade, I take offense at people policing others and calling anyone with whose behavior they’re uncomfortable about ‘filthy whores’ – it does less for equality than sexism.

Michael_Huntington's avatar

They like free jazz and obscure French art films.

Trillian's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I’m not trying to connect. I’m trying to get a feel for speech patterns and areas considered important. This is research and I’m looking for trends.
And I consider anyone who has indiscriminate sex with people they barely know as a whore. This would cover that guy on the Rock of Love Bus, and the other guy with the big clock. I’m certainly not policing anyone. I couldn’t care less who she or anyone else has sex with, but if I happen to be exposed to her or anyone else’s acts on national television, I guess I don’t need to be a detective to find it out. And the last I checked, I’m entitled to think of her and those others as whores. I think the definition applies.

1whore (noun)
2whore (verb)

Etymology: Middle English hore, from Old English hōre; akin to Old Norse hōra whore, hōrr adulterer, Latin carus dear — more at charity
Date: before 12th century
1 : a woman who engages in sexual acts for money : prostitute; also : a promiscuous or immoral woman
2 : a male who engages in sexual acts for money
3 : a venal or unscrupulous person

I notice that you don’t hesitate to censure those who have different views than yours. As you are entitled to.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Trillian When one takes offense with something that is said, that doesn’t mean one is trying to censor, does it? I further don’t get why you provided the definition from a dictionary (which, if we have to go there, is nothing but a subjective instrument of white patriarchy) because we all are aware of the context in which you used the word since you didn’t qualify it with any other explanation (until this comment of yours)...which means that the usual definition (applying to women) was understood).

I’m sorry, I didn’t get the details of your question correctly then – speech patterns vary greatly by region and class and demographic…I’d need more details as to where this is going on and what the dominant cultural values are because it makes a difference.

Trillian's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir What? White patriarchy? What? We use a standard dictionary to give us a basis. Something that the majority accepts as definition so we can understand each other. Now you want to reject definitions from Websters because it reflects (in your view) white patriarchy? As if that somehow lessens the validity of the word and its definition? What context are you talking about? I think that girl, and the other one, Snooky, are whores. They have indiscriminate sex with multiple partners, and further they prostitute themselves on television for money and “fame”, though I think in both their cases the better word would be “infamy”. Why should my opinion offend you? If I were making something up I could see where you might have a basis, but I formed my opinion based on their actions.
So do you want to re-invent the english language? I don’t understand your aversion to the dictionary.
All I wanted was an idea of speech patterns and values for females between 17 and say..25. I want to know ratios. The girls I used to see on that Leno segment really had me worried and got me thinking. Then I would see reality tv clips on The Soup and I worried and wondered more.
And the acceptance of behaviour like that of “Snooky” and “Teequila” are part of what I want to know. My opinion of them I have already stated. I want to know how many females in that age category are ok with that sort of thing. Do you see? Apparently you are fine with it, and if I knew how old you were I’d put one down as an ok. But just because you don’t have a problem with their behaviour does not mean they aren’t whores. How many females think it is ok to sleep with multiple partners. How many different partners are ok in a month. In a year. Do they use protection. Do they get tested for STD’s on a regular basis. You see?
But first, I just wanted the basics. I was just asking around Fluther first because I thought I might get some generalities from some of that age group here. I don’t want to break it down into region, race, income level or education. Just age group.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Trillian Don’t attribute to me views I didn’t express. I am not for re-inventing the English language. The dictionary, in my opinion, (and in that of others) was written by snooty rich white men and their definitions on many of the terms that can be understood differently (like whore) reflected their time and context rather than anything else. As for who you think are whores and why, well that doesn’t mean they are because, again, the term is meaningless as it only is used when a person (like you, in this case) wants to other another person (like Snooky, in this case) for doing something they’d feel uncomfortable with doing (clearly you deem your sexual experiences to be not whorish…but another person might think otherwise). The reason why seeing ‘dirty whore’ thrown around at women by other women offends me, a feminist, is because it accomplishes the ‘divide and conquer’ tactic used by society to pit women against each other by imagining that some women are better than others and therefore more adherent to what a proper woman should be. This is why I say women policing other women does less for equality than sexism. Just as you want to know why some girls are okay with seeing Snooky and Tequila as relevant, I’d want to know why you think it’s acceptable to tell others what’s morally correct when it comes to being a woman. You and them aren’t all that different, after all and it would be helfpul, for you research, to identify the biases within yourself first. As to what my age is and whether I find Snooky or Tequila’s behavior acceptable, that’s irrelevant to the situation, because what does it matter? There are many explanations (in my head) for why they behave as they do and I suppose, because I understand social conditioning and what is expected of young women these days, I am more forgiving of them than you are. And just because you have a problem with their behavior doesn’t mean they are whores. Because you don’t really care if they use protection or have STDs and those things never mattered to you or entered your mind – you just felt justified in throwing a phrase around only to make yourself seem better in your mind – we all do this sometimes, that’s fine but recognize that for what it is instead of running to the dictionary and telling me that since the dictionary uses terrible words for women, we all should. Finally, I said in my later comment that I didn’t understand what you wanted at first and explained better what I think would be useful to you. This conversation that we’re having right now is a tangent and doesn’t answer your orininal q. Thank you.

Trillian's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Here is the question; “So do you want to re-invent the english language?” Since I framed it as a question, I fail to see how I’m attributing anything to you. And since you feel that you know what my motivations are, there is really no point in having a discussion about it. You have it in your head and there’s an end to it.
I know what type of behaviour I find acceptable for myself. I have no itention of teling them that I approve or disapprove of what they do. I don’t expct them to give rats ass about how I feel. I’m sre they live their lives without reference to me or to anyone so unconnected to them.
It seems like you would be better advised spending your time being offended by women who validate the opinions of men who think we are nothing but wet holes to be filled occasionally.
I again state that I do not police anyone. I merely form an opinion based on the actions I see.
“Because you don’t really care if they use protection or have STDs and those things never mattered to you or entered your mind – you just felt justified in throwing a phrase around only to make yourself seem better in your mind – we all do this sometimes, that’s fine but recognize that for what it is instead of running to the dictionary and telling me that since the dictionary uses terrible words for women, we all should.” So you feel free to attribute to me what fits with your picture but think that I should not attribute anything to you. Should you not practice what you preach?
I am simply trying to understand something. I do not care if my choice of words offends you. The arguments which you use to support your anger seem weak and frivolous to me. I did not intend offense, but the fact that you choose to take it is entirely your choice.
Again, the divisiveness of which you speak seems initiated by you. You are immediately adversarial rather than conciliating, and seem to expect everyone to hold the same views that you do – or else.
I still want to know how many girls think and act like these two and others I see in television. I want to know if they are popular because girls want to emulate them or they just like to talk about how scandalous they are.
You are clearly not the source that I need to get information from, and your opinions about why I want the information to begin with are in error beyond any words that I can give you. Think what you wish. I have done.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Trillian “It seems like you would be better advised spending your time being offended by women who validate the opinions of men who think we are nothing but wet holes to be filled occasionally.” – oh but I do…that doesn’t get women off the hook and if that’s what ‘conciliating’ means to you, then I apologize, I don’t need to be conciliating. I am not arguing or fighting with you – I took offense with you calling people a dirty whore, you took offense with someone thinking your phrase is offensive – you went on and on about other unpertaining things to the point and now you want me to say what, exactly? I’ve already told you a million times about the question you asked and what you should be doing – but since my opinion is too complicated and not the one you seek, it’d be best going elsewhere for stereotypes – that’s for sure.

Trillian's avatar

Whatever. I call ‘em like I see ‘em. If I gave you the courtesy of trying to explain why I feel like I do I guess it was wasted. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s probably a duck.
You are wrong to say I took offense. I’m basically just surprised at your offense. I don’t waste my time being offended. Run along and think about something else that you don’t like about the way this country is run. I’m sure you can find plenty to be offended about. Maybe someone will eat some meat in front of you. Maybe someone will say “God bless you.”
Buh bye.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Trillian Is that what you think I get offended at? That’s sad and you’re just being spiteful, now. I am sorry our conversation has devolved so, although it doesn’t surprise me, whatsoever.

SVTSuzie's avatar

Guys and rock n roll. Clothes. Make-up. Other girls.

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