Dutch dictionary Van Dale has chosen ‘Boomer’ as the Dutch word of the year. Yes, it’s an English word the Dutch have appropriated (like oh so many) and has the same meaning as in English: someone, usually a senior citizen, with old fashioned or conservative views. It’s an abbreviation of ‘baby boomer’, a person born in the years following the World War II, when there was a temporary marked increase in the birth rate.
For the record, this means people born roughly between 1946 and 1964. I say this as 24oranges HQ was created by two folks of Generation X, (aka Gen X), the group after the baby boomers and preceding the Millennials, although Gen Y and Gen Z also get thrown in the mix when referring to younger generations.
The ‘OK Boomer’ meme and expression floating around didn’t go unnoticed in the Netherlands, a hugely anglophile country, but watch where you aim it. If you aim it at anyone older than you, you’ll look the fool once you need ‘our’ help in life, and you already do, which is often the reason for the meme in the first place.
Boomer, which received almost 42% of the votes, took off when a member of parliament in New Zealand targeted it at an older colleague when addressing climate change issues. It spread like wildfire afterwards. Other words – actual Dutch ones – were fashionable words such as ‘klimaatspijbelaar’ (‘skipping school for the climate’, aka someone playing hooky [American English] or playing truant ([British English]) and ‘klimaatdrammer’, a person constantly hammering on about climate change.
Last year’s winner was all about ‘Frisians blocking the motorway’.