Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Slang of the '30's Gangsters and Molls and Bonnie and Clyde

History  of the 1930's It started with the Great Depression and it ended during World War II.  In between there was prohibition, speak easy's gangsters and notoriously Bonnie and Clyde. Some of the slang from the '30's is still used today, although in some cases the meaning has been altered dramatically...then again some words are exactly the same... 

I wonder what words will stay the same and stay in use from 2000 - 2020 when people look back on it in 100 years....

Apple   any big city in the 1930s
Big House prison.
 Horn  telephone.

Broad/dame/doll  woman 

Brodie  A mistake (seems to be a popular name now a days ...don't tell the kids their name means mistake...)
Cadillac   an ounce of cocaine or heroin.
Canary   a female singer.

Cats/alligators –  fans of swing music.

 Copper a police officer.   Guess it got shortened through the years to just Cop now...

Cute as a bug's ear           Very cute
Dick/gumshoe/flatfoot  Detective  

Dingy     Silly
Gat/rod/heater/convincer  A couple of these words are still used today when referring to a gun.
Hooch/Booze   whiskey.
Hot mama/looker/ tomato/dish/sweet patootie  good looking woman.

Keen      Very Good
Kibosh   Squelch
Kippy     Neat

Low down    All the information
making whoopee  Sex
 Nuts!   Telling someone they are full of nonsense
Okie     Migrant worker from Oklahoma

Patsy    Innocent man framed for a criminal charge

Pill     Disagreeable person
Pip    Attractive person

Pitching woo  Sex

Rot gut, bathtub gin    Prohibition alcohol usually made in back rooms and of low quality
Sawbuck         $10 bill

Scat singer      A vocalist who improvises lyrics, with nonsense syllables not using words

Scrub     Poor student

Shake a leg    Hurry up
 Squat     Nothing
Stool pigeon, snitch          Someone who informs to the police

Suds, salad, dough, moolah, rhino, bacon (as in bring home the bacon), bread           Money

Take a powder, blow, split, scram, drift      Leave

Taking the rap, taking the fall        Taking responsibility for someone else's crime or crimes

 Trigger Men  hired gunmen. 
 Twit       Fool or Idiot
Whacky      Crazy

What's your story, morning glory?              What do you mean by that?

 You and me both    I agree

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