From Ordinary World 2016:

Hey, today's my birthday, man.

Um, and I'm thinking about having a party,like a daytime blowout kinda party.

So... Yeah, dude, um, as soon as you get this, or...

I'll call you back. As soon as I get a location, I'll call you back.

It's gonna be sick.

Is "It's gonna be sick." an idiom? or is it a common expression?

Thanks a lot

  • 1
    It's an idiom, but with a wide variety of meanings. It could be taken fairly literally to mean that the party will be very bad, or it could be much the opposite, with "sick" being used in the reverse sense to mean "great". Many words -- "cool", "bitchin'", etc -- are used by youth and those in the counter-culture in the opposite sense, and some make it into the wider colloquial English.
    – Hot Licks
    Oct 23, 2016 at 12:50
  • 1
    I would note that within certain groups the term could have sexual implications.
    – Hot Licks
    Oct 23, 2016 at 13:05

1 Answer 1


It means "excellent" or "very impressive". In this context, "sick" is an example of an inverted meaning. From the Oxford Dictionaries blog:

A common trick of slang is to invert meanings, so that seemingly negative words are used as terms of approval. Bad and wicked are two established examples, although it may surprise you to see just how far back their positive uses go....

Sick is a more recent arrival, first seen as a US synonym for ‘excellent’ or ‘very impressive’ in 1983:

…it was a sick party and there were tons of cool people there.

  • 1
    interesting ! 1++
    – Freeman
    Oct 23, 2016 at 12:59

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