Is ‘NPC’ an insult? Guide to understanding between generations


For love there is no age. There is no age to study, travel, leave, return, get married or have children. Even to make our dreams come true, any age is good. But there are things for which age can be a barrier. For example: what happens when a millennial, or a member of the yoz generations, talks to or sends a message to someone born in the 50s or 60s?

It may happen that said boomer doesn’t understand anything or, as he would say, “not a damn thing,” because “he’s not cool.” Conclusion: age matters a lot! Our date of birth determines whether we understand the new generations better or worse and, as a result, we are more or less integrated at a linguistic level in today’s society so as not to seem like “the Whitewash of the blue summer 2024.”

Generations and jargons

Well, in line with the date of birth, let’s frame these concepts chronologically: millennials are those who were born between 80 and 90 and whose age today is around 30 – 40; Generation Zeta or zennials are the teenagers of our days, born between the mid-90s and 2015. They are also known as “the silent generation” , because, connected to the internet since birth and surrounded by constantly evolving technological gadgets, Instead of talking, they prefer to chat, send messages or chat through social networks.

The latest of the latest is Generation Alpha, those born after 2015. These are the children of millennials . Mark McCrindle, founder of research agency McCrindle , is primarily credited with the term. In his book The ABC of the generation of the 21st century.



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And now yes, we go back to those wonderful years , those known as baby boomers in the US, those born in the years of the birth explosion or baby boom after the Second World War. In the Spanish-speaking environment, this generation of the 50s – 60s used a more “pure” Spanish, not yet invaded by anglicisms, calques, loanwords or hieroglyphic words. Or not? Ahem. We have a sandwich, jeans, camping, soccer, bacon, aerobics, rock, jazz, whiskey or whiskey.

Boomers do n’t understand cool teen talk , but the same goes for the other way around. Would millennials or zennials understand expressions such as “neighbor hallucinates”, “nanai from China”, “Calm down, log!”, “Here, jeroma, gumballs”, “See you later, Lucas” or “get in line, “Pepsicola”? And so, a long etcetera of words and expressions in a Spanish that does not borrow or trace anglicisms or encrypted words to seem more “cool from Paraguay.” How would a teenager respond to all this nonsense?

“MEH, are you freaking out? Don’t scratch me with your prehistoric moves!”

NPC or Non Player Character

The expression “NPC” is the English abbreviation for Non Playing Character , used in the field of video games to refer to the character that is not part of the game, that is, the one who is decorative, as part of the decoration. Adolescents use this abbreviation (Spanish and pronounced “enepecé”) to describe dull people, who “paint” little, who do not get wet, do not participate or who have lost their personality and, therefore, are no longer interesting for the game. .

Today’s teenagers boast about using cool language and describe the expressions of adults as stale and obsolete. So the boomers , who do not have a “fingertip” control of the language of the millennials or the zennials , not only have to “get their act together” to be up to date when it comes to verbal communication, but they must also master the language. language to name everyday realities that did not exist four decades ago: internet, web, GPS, tablet , smartphone , pen drive , LED, bluetooth , Scooter, selfie or Roomba.

Millennials and zennials may not say “Hello” but rather “Holi” (with a slightly repipe intonation to make it clear that we are up-to-date ). Now we no longer send a message, but a WhatsApp , an email , a post , a tweet , a like or a reel . If we do not respond to any of the above or we act long so as not to greet someone or go unnoticed, we are doing ghosting .

We are npc if we are no longer “cool”, nor are we “cool”, nor are we “the kings of mambo”, or, translated into the current lexicon, we will be alive again , that is, “happy as Easter”, if We recover our status as cool , bestie , tiktoker , influencer , youtuber , hater , gymbro or follower .

From chocolate to ‘chococcino’

And what can you tell me about the linguistic influence in the gastronomic field? That delicious mountain-shaped cupcake on whose top sits a cloud of sugar or chocolate is now a muffin , and if what it has on top is a decorative crater of colorful edible figurines, that is, toppings , it is a cupcake . A freshly squeezed multifruit juice is a smoothie . If you drink an espresso with milk foam, all well shaken and cold, it is a frappuccino , and if it is chocolate, guess what? Equilicuá, chococcino !

With these gastronomic notes I leave you with a sweet taste in your mouth and I say goodbye at random with an expression from the 90s and without giving spoilers to the movie that brought her to fame, Terminator : See you, baby !

Author Bio: Cristina Cela Gutiérrez works in Translation and Interpretation at the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria