Eric Paulsen

Eric Paulsen

I wanted to be in radio since I was four - and four decades later I still haven't grown out of it...Full Bio


Here's some "Roaring 20's" slang people were using 100 years ago

Whether we're officially in a new decade or not - the debate continues on that - the fact is most people think of it that way because we've changed two numbers instead of one with the arrival of the New Year. 2020 - which still sounds wayyyy into the future - is here and that makes us look ahead at what the decade will bring. It also gets us to look back at what the 20's brought the last time it came around in the 1900s. The 1920s was a decade of many new developments, lots of new consumer conveniences (the first dishwashers, radios became popular, Ford's Model T was sweeping the nation), and trends. Along with the zeitgeist were a bunch of "slang" terms, much of which has been lost with time. I did find a great article from, entitled "59 Quick Slang Phrases from the 1920s We Should Start Using Again" and thought I'd share it with you.

Here are some examples:

Bearcat: a lively, spirited woman, possibly with a fiery streak (the "Cougar" term hadn't come out yet)

Berries: like “bee’s knees,” denotes that something is good, desirable or pleasing. “That sounds like berries to me!”

Bimbo: refers to a macho man (so if The Village People had performed in the 1920s, would "Macho Man" have been titled "Bimbo"?)

Bluenose: term for a prude or individual deemed to be a killjoy

“Butt me!”: “I would like a cigarette.”

Cancelled stamp: a shy, lonely female, the type one would describe as a “wallflower”

Cheaters: Glasses or bifocals

Dewdropper: like lollygagger, a slacker who sits around all day and does nothing, often unemployed

Dumb Dora: an unintelligent woman (they used this term a lot on the "Match Game" game show in the 1970s)

Four-flusher: someone who mooches off the money of others in order to feign wealth

Giggle water: liquor, alcoholic beverage

“Go chase yourself!”: “Get out of here!”

Hotsy-totsy: attractive, pleasing to the eye

Mrs. Grundy: an uptight or very straight-laced individual

Ossified: drunk

Sockdollager: an event or action of great importance

Spifflicated: inebriated

Whoopee: to have a good time, “make whoopee”

Check out the rest of the terms here!

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