American Slang Words – Part 1

I’m sure you will enjoy watching the new series on History channel called America’s Secret Slang. Here comes a list of phrases from the first episode where you can hear the etymology of the following American slang expressions:

  1. Pork barrel project
  2. Slush fund
  3. Lame duck
  4. Dark horse
  5. Stump speech
  6. Straw poll
  7. Throw a hat into the ring
  8. Teddy bear
  9. Bully pulpit
  10. Rehire, indoors, administration
  11. Belittle, breadstuff, indecipherable
  12. Bloviator, hospitalization
  13. Evil empire
  14. Misunderestimate, embetterment
  15. Watergate, to wiretap, to bug, smoking gun, expletive deleted, cover up, stonewall
  16. Fall off the wagon, on the wagon, teetotaler, bootleg, skid row, gangbuster
  17. Flash in the pan, half-cocked, lock, stock and barrel
  18. Stick to your guns, shot in the dark, shoot from the hip, trigger happy, straight shooter
  19. Connecgted, made man, beef, on the spot, muscled, clipped, whacked, burned, iced
  20. Give smo. the third digree, sing like a canary, stool pigeon, up the river
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I’m sure you’ve already heard of expressions such as “teddy bear” or “bootleg” and “stick to your guns”, but I guess you had no clue where they came from 🙂

English Phrases in Situations

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