Buggin, Cake Boy, & More 90s Slang From the Film

May 2024 · 3 minute read

A is for audi, B is for buggin’, and C is for cake boy.

Of all the things Clueless is most remembered for (neon T-shirts, airheaded Valley girls), nothing quite tops the over-the-top slang that sparked an entirely new—and, some would say, tragic—vernacular among ’90s-era teens. One review of the 1995 cult classic said it was defined by its “bubblegum hip-hop lingo.” Roger Ebert praised for the film for its “ironic” and “airhead” dialogue, saying, “Amy Heckerling walks a fine line between satire and put-on, but she finds it, and her dialogue could be anthologized.”

And here, it has been. From Baldwins to Bettys, the complete Clueless dictionary:

Audi: Leaving, exiting, out of here. (Not to be confused with the German automobile company.)


Dionne: “I do not wear polyester hair, OK? Unlike some people I know like Shawana.”

Cher: “Dee, I'm Audi.”

Dionne: “Bye.”

Baldwin: A handsome or gorgeous man (the Baldwin brothers were hot in the mid-’90s.)


Cher: “OK, OK, so he is kind of a Baldwin.”

Betty: A beautiful, timeless woman. Derived from the 1930s film star Betty Grable, the original pin-up girl.


Cher: “Wasn't my mom a total Betty? She died when I was young, a freak accident during a routine liposuction.”

Boinkfest: A sexual encounter, perhaps an orgy.


Cher: “Here's the 411 on Mr. Hall: he's single, he's 47, and he earns minor duckets for a thankless job. What that man needs is a good healthy boinkfest.”

Buggin’: Freaked out, upset, at a loss, confused.


Cher: “I said RSVP because it was a sit-down dinner. But people came that, like, did not RSVP, so I was, like, totally buggin'.”

Cake boy: A gay man.


Murray: “Your man Christian is a cake boy!”

Cher/Dionne: “A what?”

Murray: “He's a disco-dancing, Oscar Wilde–reading, Streisand-ticket-holding friend of Dorothy. Know what I'm saying?”

Chin pubes: Facial hair, particularly in reference to a goatee.


Josh: “I'm growing a goatee.”

Cher: “Oh, that's good. You don't want to be the last one at the coffee house without chin pubes."

Hagsville: Ugly, disgusting, unattractive, grotesque.


Cher: “Let's ask a guy. Christian, what do you think of Amber?”

Christian: “Hagsville.”

Jeepin’: cheating on a sexual partner.


Murray: “Where you been all weekend? What's up? You been jeepin' around behind my back?”

Loadie: Someone who does drugs, a drug addict.


Cher: “Loadies generally hang on the grassy knoll over there.”

Monet: Something that appears beautiful or attractive until you see it up close.


Cher: “No, she's a full on Monet.”

Tai: “What's a Monet?”

Cher: “It's like a painting, see? From far away, it's OK, but up close, it's a big old mess.”

Stems: Legs, particularly slender and attractive.


Christian: “Nice stems.”

Surf the crimson wave: A woman who is on her period.


Cher: “I object! Do you recall the dates of these alleged tardies?”

Mr. Hall: “One was last Monday!”

Cher: “Mr. Hall, I was surfing the crimson wave. I had to haul ass to the ladies’.”

Mr. Hall: “I assume you’re referring to women’s troubles, and so I’ll let that one slide.”

Wiggin’: To freak out.


Cher: “This Josh and Tai thing was wiggin’ me more than anything. I mean, what was my problem? Tai is my pal. I don't begrudge her a boyfriend.”