Slang is a type of language that consists of words, and phrases, that are regarded as very informal.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

4
votes
2answers
639 views

What is the origin of “oh noodles!”

Noodles are tasty. I like them, but why are they also used as an exclamation of dismay in the following? Oh Noodles!
1
vote
1answer
8k views

Origin of “poindexter/pointdexter” [closed]

Was this term (I believe it is a synonym of geek, nerd, and so on) based on the television series Dexter or was it around before that and the series based its name on it?
1
vote
1answer
1k views

What's the meaning of 'haler'? [correction: hailer] [closed]

This doesn't seem to be general reference, because in the context I've seen it used tonight (the London riots), it certainly isn't referring to a coin, or 'a person who hails'. I've heard it used ...
3
votes
2answers
771 views

Meaning of “mints”

Context (New York Times), MINTS An organic fudge brownie awaits you in the room, along with a personalized welcome letter... First, I'm not sure if I'm on the right track or not (I'm wondering ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Police in general as “feds”

There are many slang terms for the police, and one which has recently been in the news in the UK is "the feds", as in if you see a brother... SALUT! if you see a fed... SHOOT! Cassell's ...
9
votes
3answers
8k views

Origin of “son of a gun”

Growing up there was a friend of my family who would often use son of a gun as a slang term. For example, And that son of a gun has a 300hp motor in it. Like any father, my Dad wanted to raise ...
10
votes
4answers
43k views

Meaning of “catch you on the flip side”

I received an email from a coworker, and we're not that friendly. Actually, we're not friends at all, just two good colleagues. In his email, he wrote as his last sentence Catch you on the flip ...
19
votes
4answers
22k views

Is “how come” slang?

Sample Conversation: A: How are you? B: I am mad. A: How come? I thought that how come was a logical word choice but upon speaking with somebody for whom English is a second language, ...
14
votes
2answers
4k views

Why does “sucker” mean “unexpected” in “Sucker Punch”?

Sucker punch seems to mean "an unexpected punch" in slang. What is the origin of this term and why does sucker mean unexpected in sucker punch?
15
votes
9answers
8k views

Origin and status of “hosed”, meaning “broken”

Are the etymology and status of hosed known, and if so, what are they? For this question, "hosed" is used as at onlineslangdictionary or at urbandictionary. (That is, with meaning broken, messed up, ...
6
votes
4answers
5k views

What is the meaning and etymology of 'scut' from 'scut work'?

What is the origin of scut in scut work? According to Merriam-Webster, scut work: routine and often menial labor Probably from medical argot, scut meaning 'junior intern' First known use: circa 1962 ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

What is the origin of the expression “brassed off”?

Brass bands were being discussed today which naturally led to someone claiming to be brassed off about something, meaning disgruntled or annoyed. Does anyone know the origin of this expression? ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

What is “generation X” and “generation Y”?

Why are we called Generation Y? What's Generation X anyway? What about Baby Boomers?
6
votes
9answers
3k views

Can the word “special” have a negative connotation?

I am involved with a group that works with children aged about 7, who've been through some difficult things. One of the sessions focuses on how "every one of you is special". Recently, somebody's ...
0
votes
0answers
397 views

“She’s got a ticket to ride, but she don’t care” — why? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: The grammaticality of “that don't impress me much” In the famous Beatles song Ticket to ride, it is said of the protagonist that “she don’t care”. Why isn’t ...
42
votes
6answers
48k views

What is meant by “don't piss on my boots and tell me it's raining”?

I have heard a couple of times recently the phrase "don't piss on my boots and tell me it's raining", usually in the context of a heated argument so I've hesitated to ask speaker what exactly he meant ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

London dialect usage

I found the following sentence in this article and was trying to understand it. I could get the meaning from the context, but I cannot deconstruct the sentence at all. They introduced pugnacity, ...
2
votes
3answers
745 views

Word or phrase for the state in the morning after drunkenness

I am looking for the (slang) phrase or equivalent of the word drunkenness which contains the word dog. I mean the state of someone in the morning after the hard drunkenness.
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How would one use the term “heavy sugar,” and how did it originate?

I first heard the term "heavy sugar" in a song by the same title, by the band Calhoun. The usage in the song is: "I've got heavy sugar in the bank." Some searching brought me to a jazz slang site ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Is “girls” a suitable complementary term to go along with “guys”?

Trying to keep the discussion about language and meaning, and hopefully not getting socio-political, is "girls" a valid counterpart for "guys", as in "guys and girls"? The intention is to describe a ...
3
votes
2answers
365 views

What is a 'snake-oil program'?

What is a snake-oil program? Source Stay Safe Online article
8
votes
3answers
2k views

What phrase is “you betcha” a descendant of?

"You bet you"? That's the closest I could think of. Or is it "you bet yourself", with the "self" omitted so it's quicker to say? Or is it something else altogether?
-5
votes
3answers
1k views

“Grizzly status”

In a Youtube video I was watching yesterday I heard some young kid shouting "grizzly status!" over and over again. According to urban dictionary, it applies to extremely extraordinary achievements ...
10
votes
7answers
13k views

Colloquial definition of “douchebag”

Obviously "douchebag" has a literal meaning - however if we see someone wearing sunglasses indoors, we would call them a douchebag. I'm trying to explain this to a friend. How do you verbalize this ...
10
votes
4answers
120k views

What does “five O” mean (and why)?

I've heard quite a few times the term "five O" (eg in the US TV show "the Wire"). It seems to mean "police" (inferred from the context), and I'm curious to know where the expression comes from, and ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

What does “[expletive] it up” mean?

When I was in San Diego, I asked to a girl "how can I get to the freeway?" She answered me, "Go straight on, you can't fuck it up." What does it mean? Is this a usable phrase or it is too vulgar? Is ...
21
votes
5answers
4k views

“A whole nother” way of looking at things

People say this so much (instead of "another whole" way, etc.) that I wonder how it got started. How did "another whole..." get changed to "a whole nother..."?
7
votes
3answers
5k views

What is the reasoning behind the “urban” slang word “tight” coming to mean “cool/great/slick”?

How and why did the word tight come to be appropriated in this sense, for example as in, "That car is tight, cuh!" ? I mean, one easily extrapolates from the "normal" definition to understand why ...
9
votes
2answers
19k views

Why does one “stand there like a lemon”?

I was standing around like a lemon the other day (meaning, standing doing nothing when I ought to have been a little more active) when it occurred to me to wonder, why does one stand there like a ...
6
votes
5answers
12k views

What is the origin of the term “screw” in the case of a prison guard?

The term screw can refer to a prison guard. An example of this is seen in the folk song The Catalpa: So come all you screw warders and jailers Remember Perth regatta day Take care of the rest of your ...
13
votes
7answers
16k views

How do I spell the truncation 'Cas', as in 'Sports Casual/Sports Cas'?

How do I spell the truncation 'Cas', as in 'Sports Casual/Sports Cas'? It may be UK only, and may have been spawned by Alan Partridge. Cash/Cas are not right. *As in a slang term, "he was acting all ...
4
votes
5answers
468 views

What could be an alternative word implying 'to endorse someone'?

On professional social network sites (like LinkedIn) there are terms like 'recommend someone' or 'endorse someone'. What could be an alternative term that is somewhat lighter in meaning as compared to ...
1
vote
0answers
236 views

What is the origin of using the letters 'ZZZ' to symbolize a person sleeping? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How did the letter Z become to be associated with sleeping/snoring? In old cartoons and even now in other such media, often the letters 'zzz' are used to indicate that a ...
6
votes
1answer
330 views

What is the term for giving an action or phenomenon somebody's name, e.g. “Doing a Lord Lucan”?

A friend of mine is keen on taking the glory (or adverse publicity!) when something goes wrong on a job he's working on and he likes to give it his name, e.g., "this is turning into a right Simpson of ...
1
vote
1answer
244 views

I want to use the suffix -orama with rate (rating)

So, I've seen the suffix -arama, but I am also used to -orama, which is the correct to use along 'rate'? souce: http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/492/where-does-the-suffix-arama-as-in-...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Should we avoid using words that have alternate offensive meaning [closed]

There are many English words that could be used to refer to something innocent that also has a common slang meaning, such as pussy, ass, bitch, etc. For convenience' sake, should we avoid using ...
-1
votes
3answers
12k views

What are some slang terms for “newspaper”? [closed]

I'm looking for some slang terms for a newspaper, whether they are archaic terms that nobody has used in the past 70 years or modern, obscure terms.
4
votes
3answers
1k views

What's a “right old roarer” in British English?

I was reading an Amazon review just now, and came across someone (Tchaikovsky) being described as a right old roarer. I'm guessing this is familiar slang to Brits, but I'm not getting good search ...
4
votes
8answers
23k views

What's the origin of “throwing someone under the bus”?

What's the origin of the phrase "to throw someone under the bus" or "so-and-so threw me under the bus?" (in the sense of betrayal)? It seems like a very specific phrase not to come from some specific ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Use of “them” as an article, not a pronoun

I've seen a lot of times the pronoun them used like an article. For example, in the title of the Delta Rhythm Boys Them bones, or in the first sentence of "Money for nothing": Now look at them yo-...
5
votes
3answers
4k views

Where did the phrase “shut up” as an expression of disbelief or amazement originate?

I recently heard shut up used according to this definition in Urban dictionary. shut·up (shuht-up) --interjection 1. An expression of disbelief. 2. Amazement; astonishment. I've only ...
3
votes
5answers
15k views

Get a life | You have no life

I saw this as a mild insult on the Internet, one person tells another: "get a life" or "you have no life". What does it mean literally and what is its meaning as an insult?
2
votes
3answers
2k views

Meaning of “do over”

A colleague and I are having a disagreement over the slang meaning and usage of "do over" Does it mean (a) beat somebody up or does it have a sexual meaning of (b) screw someone i.e. hump someone
22
votes
4answers
47k views

What's the difference between “informal”, “colloquial”, “slang”, and “vulgar”?

It seems many people get confused about the differences (and similarities) between "colloquial" and "slang", so what exactly does each term apply to? But to be even more thorough it seems to me we ...
6
votes
3answers
18k views

What does it mean to “pay X on the dollar”?

When I hear money laundry lingo in TV crime-series, people sometimes fence stuff for so and so much "on the dollar". What does it actually mean? And where does the expression originate from?
5
votes
3answers
8k views

Is “half-a-dozen” an accepted term?

I suspect that the parent term is "half of a dozen" which is just being shortened to half-a-dozen. But I caught myself using half-dozen earlier today and wondered which of the variants are considered ...
0
votes
2answers
585 views

I can't get no satisfaction? really? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “I Can't Get No Satisfaction” — what's the correct meaning? I know this is a popular song and they might have twisted it a bit. but is it the ...
7
votes
3answers
5k views

Is “premises” always plural?

On-premises ... On-premise I see these terms frequently used to describe software systems hosted within a company's datacenter vs. software systems hosted externally by a third party (in the "cloud")....
4
votes
2answers
32k views

Origin of “s--t eating grin”

What is the origin of the phrase shit eating grin? How did it come to mean showing smugness or self-satisfaction of an individual's actions?
16
votes
3answers
3k views

How old is the word “prolly”?

Prolly is given this definition at Wiktionary: Clipped pronunciation of probably. I was reading an interesting article today that claimed prolly dates from 1947 and that surprised me. ...