The ABCs of American Slang: A-G

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We’re breaking down the ABCs of American Slang, the most common slang words or phrases you’ll hear in the United States. Today, we’re focusing on letters A-G.

We asked our ISV Magazine Ambassadors and Correspondents to share with us some American slang. Today’s list comes from Srinivas (Sid) Thatham, ISV Ambassador who attends the University of Cincinnati.

Ace Very good He’s an ace archer.
Action Excitement Do you know where the action is in this town?
Airhead Stupid Person My sister’s boyfriend is a real airhead.
All wet Completely Wrong Your ideas about politics are all wet.
All-nighter Studying all night I almost fell asleep during the test after an all-nighter.
Ammo Ammunition The gun was useless after the killer ran out of ammo.
Antifreeze Liquor I really need some antifreeze in me on cold days like this.
Armpit Undesirable place This town is really an armpit.
Bad Intense What an awesome sunset.
Barf Vomited Wow, that was really a bad movie.
Bashed Crushed The boat was bashed beyond recognition.
Beat Exhausted After working all day I am really beat.
Beemer BMW car He just bought a new beemer to drive to work in.
Bench Taken out of the game He was benched during the basketball playoffs.
Bent Angry It’s OK. Don’t get so bent.
Bent out of shape Become upset Don’t get so bent out of shape.
Big gun Huge biceps The Rock has two big guns.
Big mouth One who talks too much Shut up! You really have a big mouth.
Big stink Big issue You made a big stink about the homework.
Bite it Die Slow down, you’re going to bite it in a car accident.
Blade Knife He carried a ten inch blade with him.
Blimp Fat person I sat next to a blimp on the plane.
Blow Leave I’m going to blow out of here now.
Blow Lose He blew all his money gambling.
Blow a fuse Lose your temper Hey, don’t blow a fuse.
Blow one’s cool Lose your temper Calm down. Don’t blow your cool.
Bonkers Crazy I think I am going bonkers.
Boo-Boo Mistake I made a boo-boo.
Break Opportunity A lucky break helped him get the job.
Break it up Stop Break it up, or I will call the police.
Bring down Depressing The news of the airplane crash was a bring-down.
Bummed Depressed I was really bummed after I heard the news.
Bummer Bad Experience My trip to New York was a bummer.
Bust Failure The whole idea was a bust.
Call Predict Good call about the weather.
Can Bathroom Do you know where the can is?
Catch some rays Get some sunshine I’m going to lie on the beach and catch some rays.
Catch some Z’s Get some sleep I need to catch some Z’s before I go on my trip.
Cheesy Cheap That is really a cheesy looking outfit.
Chicken Coward Don’t be a chicken.
Chintzy Cheap That really was a chintzy present you got him.
Chow down Eat a lot I need to find a place to chow down.
Clip Cheat Watch out or they will clip you at that bar.
Clunker Old car I can’t go on a date in that clunker.
Cold Fish Dull My date for the dance was a cold fish.
Collar Arrest I knew they would collar the robber sooner or later.
Come up for air Take a break He has to come up for air or he will die from exhaustion.
Con Deceive Don’t try to con me.
Cop Stole How did you get the road sign? I copped it.
Couch Potato Lazy Person He is a couch potato.
Cream Beat Our team creamed them badly.
Croak Die I feel like I am going to croak.
Cruise Going very fast The skier was cruising down the hill
Cushy Easy He has a really cushy job.
Cut Dilute Could you cut my whiskey with a little water?
Cut out Leave Lets get the bill and find out the damage.
Damage Cost Lets get the bill and find out the damage.
Dead Quiet This disco is really dead tonight.
Deck Knocked down He was decked in the fight.
Deep pockets Good source of money Her boyfriend has deep pockets.
Dicey Chancy Since the weather is a little dicey, I won’t go today.
Ditch Leave I’ll ditch my younger brother with my grandmother.
Do a snow job Deceive Don’t try to do a snow job on me.
Dope Drug There are a lot of dope dealers around here.
Dough Money I need some dough before I can go Christmas shopping.
Down Drink quickly Let’s go to a bar and down a few beers.
Drag Boring Doing homework on the weekend is a drag.
Dynamite Powerful This drink is really dynamite.
Easy Mark Likely victims You’re an easy mark because you carry cash.
Far-out Great This music is really far-out.
Fix Dose of Drugs The addict needs another fix.
Flaky Unreliable He is too flaky to do the work.
Flick Movie I haven’t seen a flick in a long time.
Flipped out Lost control He flipped out when he heard that his house was robbed.
Flip side Other side What kind of music do you have on the flip side of the tape?
Foxy Sexy She is a foxy lady.
Get with it Hurry up If you don’t get with it, we will never finish this work.
Gig Job I have a gig on Saturday night from 7:00 to 10:00.
Go Try Let me have a go at solving the problem.
Go bananas Go crazy I am going to go bananas if I don’t have a vacation soon.
Go down Happening What is going down?
Goof Fool I am really a goof at times.
Goof up Make a serious mistake I really goofed up when I painted my room green.
Grand Thousand dollars His salary is twenty grand.
Grass Marijuana Lots of students smoke grass in the dormitory.
Gravy Easy Money This job is pure gravy.
Gross-out Disgusting Time The party was a gross-out.
Grub Food Where is the best place to get some grub around here?


Stay with us as we continue the ABCs of American Slang!

On Tuesday, August 5 we’re cover letters H-N with a brief podcast.


international student voice magazine Srinivasa Thatham Sampath KumarSrinivasa Thatham Sampath Kumar

ISV Ambassador

University of Cincinnati

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