Podcast 11 – A – Z of Essential Slang

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A – Z of Essential Slang

Hi, Today I’m going to teach you some really useful phrases or words that you probably won’t hear in any language courses. I will do one for each letter of the alphabet.

A is for Airhead. An Airhead means somebody who is really stupid. So instead of having a brain in their head, their head is just full of air. So if somebody is continually stupid you can say “you are such an airhead”.

B is for Bimbo.  A Bimbo is similar to an Airhead actually. Except that we use “Bimbo” to describe women who look sexually attractive but who are very stupid.  So normally we use it to describe women who look good but who don’t know anything useful. For example you can say “she is such a bimbo”.  In England Blonde girls have a negative stereotype of looking really good but being really stupid, so often you will hear people saying “she is such a blonde bimbo”.

C is for Ciggy. Ciggy is slang for cigarette. And I’m teaching you this because more and more these days’ people ask you on the street. ”excuse me have you got a ciggy?” If you haven’t got any cigarettes or if you just don’t want to give one away, you can say “I’m sorry I don’t smoke mate”.

D is for Dead Cert. If something is a dead cert is means people think its 100% going to happen. For example if somebody says “Do you think Man Utd will win the Premier League?” If you believe 100% that they will and other teams have no chance, you can say “sure, Man Utd are a dead cert”.  Another example, is maybe your friend had a job interview and you ask your friend “How was the job interview”. Your friend can reply “It’s a dead-cert” or he may say “I’m a dead cert for this job”. That means he is 100% sure that he will get the job.

E is for Eye – Candy. Eye – Candy is something that is nice for your eyes to look at. So normally boys use this slang to describe pretty women. For example your friend may say “wow, look at all that eye – candy”. This means there is a group of very attractive ladies. However, this phrase is just for speaking with your friends. Don’t say to a girl “you are eye-candy”. If you say it’s a little insulting.

F is for Fag. Fag means cigarette. Just like Ciggy it is one of the most common ways of saying cigarette. For example “I need to buy some fags”.

G is for Geek. A geek is an unattractive person that works or studies too hard. So the normal image of a geek is a scientist with glasses that has no idea how to socialise with girls. However, these days you can describe anyone who has a deep knowledge of a certain subject as a geek. For example if someone is really good at Maths and studies very hard, you can say they are a “Maths geek”.

H is for Hooker.  Hooker and Hoe are slang words for prostitute. Most people don’t say prostitute anymore as this word is too formal.

I is for Info. Info means information. It’s just the short form. So if somebody says “I need some more info” it literally means that they need more information.

J is for Junkie. A junkie is somebody who is addicted to something. So normally we use it for drug addiction or other addictive behaviour. So if somebody is really addicted to drugs you can say “he is a junkie”. If someone is addicted to exercise then you can say they are an “exercise junkie”. You can also use this word in a friendly way if you feel that someone really loves something. For example, if your friend eats cheese every day, you can say “you are a cheese junkie”.

K is for knackered. Knackered means physically very tired. Normally it means your body is so tired and you want to lay down. However, so many people just use this word to mean tired. For example “I’m knackered from work”.  Or “I’ve been playing football all day, I’m knackered”.

L is for laid back. For example “He is a very laid back person” or “You are too laid back”.  Laid back means very relaxed and calm. Some people don’t often get angry and are very calm about most situations. We describe these people as laid back.

M is for mate. Mate is a slang word for friend. For example “He is my best mate”. That means he is my best friend. But many people say mate after some sentences  just to be friendly. For example “how are you doing mate?” or “Have you got a cigarette mate?” So even if you have just met for the first time some people will still put mate on the end of each sentence. It’s normally males who say this when speaking to other males. But recently I hear more and more females saying this.

N is for Nerd. A Nerd is pretty much the same as a Geek. It’s someone that doesn’t look good and who has a high interest in studying, or who is very intelligent in one field. Some people call these people Nerds, other people call them geeks. Both is ok.

O is for Old bat. For example “that old bat called the police because I was playing my music too loud”  or “Mrs. Smith is not an old bat, she’s actually a very kind woman”.  An old Bat means an unpleasant old lady. So people use this word to describe any old lady that they think is not very friendly or relaxed. It is a slightly offensive phrase so don’t call your grandma by this name.

P is for puke.  Puke is slang for vomit. So if you drink too much alcohol you will probably puke. You can say “I feel like I’m going to puke” or in past tense, “last night I puked up”.  One common expression is “I puked my guts out”. This means you were very sick and vomited a lot.

Q is for quality. For example “That is quality” or “Kung Fu Panda is a quality movie”.  If you say something is quality it means you have a very good opinion about it. So especially in London people often say “That is quality” when somebody tells them something. For example if your friend phones you and says “I asked her to marry me and she said yes”. You could say “That is quality, congratulations”.

R is for Rock Bottom. For example “My boyfriend got arrested for doing drugs yesterday, he has hit rock bottom”. Rock Bottom is the lowest point in someone’s life. So people usually say it when somebody does something really embarrassing, or they say it about themselves when they feel their life is going very badly. For example “I broke up with my girlfriend yesterday, I feel like rock – bottom”. This is a very common and useful phrase to know when you are talking about people with friends.

S is for Shank. This is an important word as you will hear it on TV all the time. I hope you never get to hear it in real life. It means knife or stab. For example “give me the shank”. This means give me the knife. But if I say, “I’m going to shank you” this means I will stab you. “I was in the hospital after getting shanked”. This means I was stabbed with a knife.

T is for Tipsy.  Tipsy is how most people describe being just a little bit drunk. For example, your friend might say “you only had 2 beers, are you drunk already?”. You may respond “I’m just a bit tipsy”. Or if you had so much to drink and got very drunk you may wake up the next morning and still feel a little bit drunk. So you may hear people saying to each other “I am still tipsy from last night”.

U is for Uni. You may already know this word. Uni is short for University. So most students say “I’m going to Uni”. If you say to somebody “I am a student”, they may ask you “so what Uni do you go to?”.

V is for vibe or Vibes. For example “This bar has a good vibe” or “I don’t trust this man, I’m getting bad vibes from him”.  So vibes are the feelings you first get from a place or a person. When you meet somebody you immediately make an opinion about them and you may have good feelings or bad feelings about them. These are vibes. Also you can also get vibes about a place. For example your friend might say “what did you think about that nightclub yesterday”. You might say “the vibe was good but the drinks were very expensive”. This means you liked the atmosphere in the nightclub but you didn’t like the price of the drinks.

W is for weirdo. Weirdo it used to describe someone who is often weird or strange. We would then say something like “He is such a weirdo”.

Y is for Yank.  For example “He is a Yank”. This is what many English people call people from America. I don’t know the historical reasons or if this term is offensive but I do hear it a lot in the UK and on TV.

Z is for Zip it. If someone says to you “zip it”, they mean shut up or stop talking.  Obviously your mouth has not got a zip, but imagine it has. If you zip your lips together you won’t be able to talk.  Zip it is is not a polite thing to say but it’s better than saying shut up. Parents often say “zip it” to their children.

I hope this helps you. You can view this podcast again at our website www.proofessor.co.uk. We also have this podcast in written form on our website in case you didn’t understand anything that I said. If you have any questions or suggestions regarding any of our podcasts then please email us at podcasts@proofessor.co.uk. We want to reach out to as many students as possible, so please remember to tell your friends to listen.  Take it easy!


AIRHEAD = somebody who is often stupid, or an idiot

BIMBO = an attractive woman who is stupid

CIGGY = Short for Cigarette

DEAD CERT = Something that you believe is 100% going to happen

EYE CANDY = A woman or group of women who are very pretty to look at

FAG = most common way of saying Cigarette

GEEK = Someone who looks unattractive and is interested in studying or working, most often science.

HOOKER/HOE = These are the most common slang words for prostitute

INFO = Is short for information

JUNKIE = A junkie is someone who is addicted to something, most often drugs.

KNACKERED = Knackered means your body is physically very tired

LAID BACK = A laid back person is someone who is often very relaxed and calm

MATE = A mate is a friend. But people say it to be friendly these days. For example “The book costs £5 mate”.

NERD = Means the same as a geek. Somebody very interested in studying and who is unattractive.

OLD BAT =  An old bat is an unpleasant old lady

PUKE =  Puke is slang for vomit.

QUALITY = This means that you have a very good opinion of something. For example “Chelsea are a quality football team”. This means Chelsea are a very good football team.

ROCK BOTTOM = Rock Bottom is the lowest point of someone’s life. So if you got sent to prison then you have hit rock bottom.

SHANK = This is a knife. It can also mean stabbed with a knife. For example “I was in the hospital after getting shanked”.

TIPSY = A little bit drunk

UNI = This is short for University

VIBES = Vibes are the feelings you get from a person or place.

WEIRDO = A weirdo is someone who is often weird or strange.

YANK S = Slang for Americans.

ZIP IT = Shut up or close your mouth.


For more podcasts about English slang please click here

These podcasts are designed for international students, so that they can be exposed to the way that local English people speak.

If you want to give me any feedback or request me to cover a particular topic please let me know via skype  (rick_proofessor) or qq (1928215946).


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