Wartime Wednesday: WWII Slang
Every generation has its slang, and the 1940s were no exception. Here’s a collection of some of the words and expressions you might have heard hanging around the home front or armed forces during World War II. A few you still hear today.
All out: Full of vigor, determination, or enthusiasm.
All Wet: Bad, terrible. “That idea is all wet.”
Armored Cow: Canned milk.
Army Banjo: A shovel
Baptized by Fire: To have been under enemy fire for the first time; to have received one’s first wounds.
Bellyache: To complain
Beat Your Gums: To engage in useless or pointless chit-chat.
Cool as a Cucumber: Alert and self-aware, self-possessed, calm.
Ear Beater: A person who doesn’t let you get a word in edgewise.
File 13: The trash bin
Glad Rags: A person’s best clothes
Jake: Fine, good. “Everything’s jake.”
Jane: A woman
Jane-crazy: Overly fond of women.
Mud Eater: An infantryman
Ninety-Day Wonder: An officer who holds a commission by having attended a three-month course direct from civilian life.
O.A.O.” One and only. “You’re my one and only guy.”
Sugar Report: A letter from a girl.
What is your favorite slang expression?
It’s been six months since Ruth Brown followed clues to England and discovered the identity of her sister’s killer. War continues to rage as Ruth reports on food shortages, the black market, evacuation of London’s children, and the bravery of the British people.
When a bombing raid destroys her home and unearths a twenty-year-old skeleton in the cellar, her reporter’s senses tingle in anticipation of solving another mystery. Unfortunately, the by-the-book detective inspector assigned to the case is not interested in her theories. As Ruth investigates the case on her own, she butts heads with the handsome policeman.
Will she get to the bottom of the story before the killer strikes again?
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