My Tools

Angi's Toolbox

Here are my favorite tools. There is a sheet that I use to pick colors from. It's kind of a mess. I created it looooong ago in a time when I was still learning PHP and CSS. I'll fix it eventually, but if you want some colors, that's a place to go.

20s Slang

Abercrombie: A know-it-all

ab-so-lute-ly: affirmative

Abyssinia: I'll be seeing you

All the way: Chocolate cake or fudge with ice cream

All wet: No good, wrong, describes an erroneous idea or individual, as in, "He's all wet."

Ameche, horn, blower: Telephone

And how!: I strongly agree!

Ankle: to walk, i.e.. "Let's ankle!"

Apple: Any big town or city

Applesauce- an expletive same as horsefeathers, As in "Ah! applesauce!"

Attaboy!: well done!; also, Attagirl!

Aces, snazzy, hot, nobby, smooth, sweet, swell, keen, cool: Very good

back to top...

baby: sweetheart. Also denotes something of high value or respect.

baby grand: heavily built man

baby vamp: a pretty or popular female, student.

balled up: confused, messed up

baloney: Nonsense!

Bank's Closed - no kissing or making out - i.e. - "Sorry, Mac, the bank's closed."

Bearcat - a hot-blooded or fiery girl

beat it: scam or get lost

beat one's gums: idle talk

bee's knee's: great; An extraordinary person, thing, idea; the ultimate; a fad expression. Dozens of "animal anatomy" variations existed: elephant's eyebrows, gnat's whistle, eel's hips, etc.

beef: a problem, a complaint or to complain

beeswax: business, i.e. "None of your beeswax." Student.

bell bottom: a sailor

bent: drunk

berries: (1) perfect (2) money; That which is attractive or pleasing; similar to bee's knees, As in "It's the berries."

Bible Belt - Area in the South and Midwest where Fundamentalism flourishes

Big Cheese - The most important or influential person; boss. Same as big shot

big shot: important person

big six: a strong man - from auto advertising, for the new and powerful; six cylinder engines

bimbo: a tough guy

bird: general term for a man or woman, sometimes meaning "odd," i.e. "What a funny old bird."

Blind Date - going out with someone you do not know

blotto (1930 at the latest): drunk, especially to an extreme

blow: (1) a wild party (2) to leave

Bluenose - An excessively puritanical person, a prude, Creator of "the Blue Nozzle Curse."

bohunk: a derogatory name for an Eastern European immigrant. Out of use by 1930, except in anti-immigrant groups, like the KKK.

bootleg: illegal liquor

breezer (1925): a topless automobile, an convertible car

Bronx Cheer - A loud spluttering noise, used to indicate disapproval. Same as raspberry

bubs: breasts

bug-eyed Betty (1927): an unattractive girl, student.

bull: (1) a law-enforcement official, including FBI. (2) nonesense, bullshit (3) to chat idly, to exaggerate

Bull Session - Male talkfest, gossip, stories of sexual exploits

bump off: to kill, to murder

bum's rush, the: to eject by force from an establishment

bunny (1925): a term of endearment applied to the lost, disoriented. Often coupled with "poor little."

bus: any old or worn out automobile.

bushwa: a euphemism for "bullshit"

Butt me.: I'll take a smoke

back to top...


Caper - a criminal act or robbery

Carry a Torch - To have a crush on someone

Cash - a kiss

Cash or check? - Do you kiss now or later?

Cat's Meow - Something splendid or stylish; similar to bee's knees; The best or greatest, wonderful.

Cat's Pajamas - Same as cat's meow

Chassis - the female body

Cheaters - Eyeglasses

Check - kiss me later

Ciggy - cigarette

Clam - a dollar

Copacetic - Wonderful, fine, all right

Crush - An infatuation

back to top...


Daddy - a young woman's boyfriend or lover, especially if he's rich

daddy-o: a term of address; mainly a negro term.

Dame - a female. Did not gain widespread use until the 1930's.

Dapper - a Flapper's dad

Darb - An excellent person or thing (as in "the Darb" - a person with money who can be relied on to pay the check, or "That movie was darb.")

Dead soldier - an empty bear bottle

Deb - an debutant

dewdropper: a young man who sleeps all day and doesn't have a job
dinge: a derogatory term for a negro. Out of use by 1930.

Dick - a private investigator

Dogs - feet

Doll - an attractive woman

Dolled up - dressed up

Don't know from nothing - don't have any information

Don't take any wooden nickels - Don't do anything stupid

Dope: drugs

Dough: money

Dry up - shut up, get lost

Ducky - very good

Dumb Dora - a stupid female

Double-cross - to cheat, stab in the back

Drugstore Cowboy - a guy that hangs around on a street corner trying to pick up girls

back to top...

earful: enough
edge: a buzz. i.e. "I've got an edge."
egg: a person who lives the big life
Ethel: an effeminate male.

back to top...


fag: a smoke. Also, starting around 1920, a homosexual.
fella: fellow. as "man," "dude," or "guy" is today. "That John sure is a swell fella."
fish: (1) a freshman (2) a first timer in prison
flat tire: a bore
flivver: a Model T; after 1928, also any broken down automobile.
fly boy: a glamorous term for an aviator
four-flusher: a person who feigns wealth while mooching off others.
fried: drunk

back to top...

gams (1930): legs
gay: happy or lively; no connection to homosexuality. See "fag."
get-up (1930): an outfit.
get a wiggle on: get a move on, get going
get in a lather: get worked up, angry
giggle water: booze
gimp: one who walks with a limp. Gangster Dion Bannion was called Gimpy due to his noticeable limp.
gin mill: a seller of hard liquor; a speakeas
gold-digger (1925): a woman who pursues men for their money.
goods, the: (1) the right material, or a person who has it (2) the truth, i.e. "Make sure the authorities don't get the goods on you."
goof: (1) a stupid or bumbling person, (2) a boyfriend, flapper.
goofy: in love
grummy: depressed
grungy: envious

back to top...

hair of the dog (1925): a shot of booze.
half seas over: drunk, also "half under."
hard-boiled: tough, as in, a tough guy, ie: "he sure is hard-boiled!"
harp: an Irishman
hayburner: (1) a gas guzzling automobile (2) a horse one loses money on
heavy sugar (1929): a lot of money
heebie-jeebies (1926): "the shakes," named after a hit song.
high hat: a snob.
hip to the jive: trendy
hood (late 20s): hoodlum
hooey: bullshit, nonsense. Very popular from 1925 to 1930, used somewhat thereafter.
hop: (1) opiate or marijuana (2) a teen party
hopped up: under the influence of drugs
Hot dawg!: Great! Rarely spelled as shown outside of flapper groups until popularized in 1940s

back to top...

"I have to go see a man about a dog.": "I've got to leave now," often meaning to go buy whiskey.
insured: engaged

jack: money
Jake: great, ie. "Everything's Jake."
Jalopy: a dumpy old automobile
Jane: any female
jerk soda: to dispense soda from a tap; thus, "soda jerk"
jigaboo: a derogatory term for a negro
jitney: an automobile employed as a private bus.
Joe Brooks: a well dressed person; student.
john: a toilet
joint: establishment
juice joint: a speakeasy

back to top...


kale: money
keen: appealing
kike: a derogatory term for a Jewish person
killjoy: a solemn person
knock up: to make pregnant
know one's onions: to know one's business or what one is talking about

back to top...

left holding the bag: to be blamed for something
let George do it: a work evading phrase
level with me: be honest
limey: a British soldier from World War I
line: a false story, as in "to feed one a line."
live wire: a lively person
lollapalooza (1930): a humdinger
lollygagger: (1) a young man who enjoys making out (2) an idle person

back to top...

mazuma: money
milquetoast (1924): a very timid person
mind your potatoes: mind your own business.
moonshine: homemade whiskey

back to top...


nifty: great
nookie: sex
Not so good!: I personally disapprove.
"Now you're on the trolley!": Now you've got it, now you're right.

back to top...

ofay: a negro expression for Whites
Oh yeah!: I doubt it!
old boy: a male term of address, used with other males. Also "old man" "old fruit." "How's everything old boy?"
on a toot: a drinking binge
on the lam: fleeing from authorities
on the level: legitimate, honest
on the up and up: on the level
ossified: drunk
owl: a person who's out late

back to top...

palooka: (1) a below-average or average boxer (2) an outsider
panther sweat (1925): whiskey
pet: making out
petting pantry: movie theater
piffle: baloney
piker: a coward
pill: (1) a teacher (2) an unlikable person
pinko: liberal
pipe down: stop talking
pos-i-lute-ly: affirmative, also "pos-i-tive-ly"
punch the bag: small talk
putting on the ritz: after the Ritz Hotel in Paris; doing something in high style. Also "ritzy."

back to top...

quiff: a slut

rag-a-muffin: a dirty or disheveled individual
razz: to make fun of
regular: normal, typical, average; "Regular fella."
Reuben: a country bumpkin. Also "rube"
Rhatz!: How disappointing!
rub: a student dance party
rubes: money or dollars
rummy: a drunken bum

back to top...

sap: a fool, an idiot. Very common term in the 20s.
says you: disbelief
sheba: one's girlfriend
sheik: one's boyfriend
shiv: a knife
simolean: a dollar
sinker: a doughnut
sitting pretty: in a prime position
skirt: a female
smarty: a flapper
smoke-eater: a smoker
so's your old man: a reply of irritation
spade: yet another derogatory term for a negro
speakeasy: a bar selling illegal liquor
spill: to talk
stilts: legs
sugar daddy: older boyfriend who showers girlfriend with gifts in exchange for sex
swanky: (1) good (2) elegant
swell: (1) good (2) high class

back to top...

take someone for a ride: to take someone to a deserted location and murder them.
tasty: appealing
tell it to Sweeney: tell it to someone who'll believe it.
tight: attractive
tomato: a "ripe" female
torpedo: a hired thug or hitman

back to top...

upstage: snobby

vamp: (1) an aggressive flirt (2) to seduce
voot: money

wet blanket: see Killjoy
wife: dorm roomate, student.
What's eating you?: What's wrong?
whoopee: wild fun
Woof! Woof!: ridicule


You slay me!: That's funny!

zozzled: drunk

back to top...


Babe, broad, dame, doll, frail, twist, muffin, kitten Woman
Baby Glass of milk
Bean shooter, gat, rod, roscoe, heater, convincer Gun
Beat Broke
Behind the grind Behind in one's studies
Big house, hoosegow Prison
Bleed to extort or blackmail
Blinkers, lamps, pies, shutters, peepers Eyes
Blow your wig Become very excited
Booze, hooch, giggle juice, mule Whiskey
Brodie A mistake
Brunos, goons, hatchetmen, torpedoes, trigger men Hired gunmen and other tough guys
Bulge Having the advantage
Bumping gums, booshwash Talk about nothing useful
Butter and egg fly, hot mama, sweet mama, sweet patootie, dish, looker, tomato An attractive woman
Butter and egg man The money man, the man with the bankroll
Buzzer Police badge
Cabbage, lettuce, kale, folding green, long green. color of money
Cadillac One ounce packet of cocaine or heroin
Canary A female vocalist
Cats or alligators Fans of swing music
Cave One's house or apartment
Check or checker A dollar
Chicago overcoat Coffin
Chicago typewriter, chopper, gat "Tommy Gun", Thompson Submachine Gun
Chisel Swindle, cheat, work an angle
Cinder dick Railroad detective
City juice, dog soup Glass of water
Clam-bake Wild swing
Clip joint Night club or gambling joint where patrons get flimflammed
Copper Policeman
Crumb A fink, a loser by social standards
Crust To insult
Curve Disappointment
Cute as a bug's ear Very cute
Dead hoofer or cement mixer Bad dancer
Dick, shamus, gumshoe, flatfoot Detective
Dig Think hard or understand
Dil-ya-ble A phone call
Dingy Silly
Dizzy with a dame Very much in love with a woman, sometimes at great risk to themselves, especially if she's someone else's moll
Dog house String bass
Doggy Well dressed but in a self conscious way
Dollface Name for a woman when a man is pleading his case or apologizing
Doss Sleep
Drilling, plugging, throwing lead, filling someone with daylight, giving someone lead poisoning Shooting a gun (at someone)
Drumsticks, pins, pillars, stems, uprights, get away sticks, gams Legs
Dukes, paws, grabbers, meat hooks hands
Egg A crude person
Egg harbor Free dance
Eggs in coffee Run smoothly
Evil In a bad mood
Face A Caucasian
Fem, filly, flame, flirt, fuss Constant girl companion to a boy
Five spot, a Lincoln $5 bill
Genius An extremely, unbelievably, dumb persons
Gin mill Place that serves liquor, sometimes illegally
G-man Federal agent, term coined by Machine Gun Kelly
Gobble-pipe Saxophone
Golddigger Attractive young woman actively hunting for a rich man
Greaseball, half portion, wet smack, wet sock, jelly bean Unpopular person
Grifter A con man or woman
Gumming the works To cause something to run less smoothly
Gunsel Gunman with a hint toward being a reckless loose cannon or young homosexual (insult)
Hard boiled Tough
Hocks, plates Feet
Honey cooler A kiss
Hop, rag, jolly up, romp, wingding Dance or party
Hotsquat Electric chair
House dick, house peeper House detective
Joe A average guy
Joed Tired
Juicy Enjoyable
K balling Salvaging parts from junked rail cars to rebuild others
Keen Very Good
Kibosh Squelch
Kippy Neat
Low down All the information
Lunger Someone with tuberculosis
Make tracks, dangle Leave in a hurry, leave aburptly
Meat wagon Ambulance
Micky, Micky Finn Drink spiked with a knock out drugs
Mitt me kid! Congratulate me
Moll A gangster's girlfriend
Murder! Wow!
Nuts! Telling someone they are full of nonsense
Okie Migrant worker from Oklahoma
Off the cob Corny
Packing heat, wearing iron Carrying a gun
Pally Friend, chum, sometimes used sarcasticly
Patsy Innocent man framed for a criminal charge
Pill Disagreeable person
Pip Attractive person
Pitching woo, making whoopee Making love
Platter A record
Plenty rugged Big and strong
Pachuco Young Mexican living in the US
Ring-a-ding-ding A good time at a party
Rot gut, bathtub gin Prohibition alcohol usually made in back rooms and of low quality
Sawbuck $10 bill
Scat singer A vocalist who improvises lyrics, substituting nonsense syllables for words
Scrub Poor student
Shake a leg Hurry up
Skin tickler A drummer
Slugburger Adding day-old bread to ground beef.
Slip me five Shake my hand
Smooth Well dressed without qualification
Snipe Cigarette
Sourdough Conterfeit money
Speakeasy Bar disguised as something else or hidden behind an unmarked door
Squat Nothing
Stool pigeon, snitch Someone who informs to the police
Suds, salad, dough, moolah, rhino, bacon (as in bring home the bacon), bread Money
Take a powder, blow, split, scram, drift Leave
Taking the rap, taking the fall Taking responsibility for someone else's crime or crimes
The high hat A response in which one excludes another with irreverence and intent to offend
The kiss off The final goodbye as in exile or death
Tin Small change
Tin can, flivver A car
Tin ear, Ickie Someone who did not like popular music
Togged to the bricks Dressed up
Trip for biscuits A task that yields nothing
Twit Fool or Idiot
Whacky Crazy
What's your story, morning glory? What do you mean by that?
Wheat Person unused to city ways
Yo! Yes
You and me both I agree
"You shred it, wheat" You said it


Earful - enough

Edge - intoxication, a buzz. i.e. "I've got an edge."

Egg - a person who lives the big life

Fall Guy - Victim of a frame

Fire extinguisher - a chaperone

Fish -(1) a college freshman
(2) a first timer in prison

Flat Tire - A dull witted, insipid, disappointing date. Same as pill, pickle, drag, rag, oilcan

Flivver - a Model T; after 1928, could mean any old broken down car

Flapper - A stylish, brash, hedonistic young woman with short skirts & shorter hair

Fly boy - a glamorous term for an aviator

Frame - To give false evidence , to set up someone

Gams - A woman's legs

Get a wiggle on - get a move on, get going

Giggle Water - An intoxicating beverage; alcohol

Gin Mill - An establishment where hard liquor is sold; bar

Glad rags - "going out on the town" clothes

Gold Digger - A woman who associates with or marries a man for his wealth

Goofy - in love

Hair of the Dog - a shot of alcohol

Handcuff - an engagement ring

Hard Boiled - a tough, strong guy

Hayburner - (1) a gas guzzling car (2) a horse one loses money on

Heebie-Jeebies - The jitters

High-Hat - To snub

Hit on all sixes - to perform 100 per cent; as "hitting on all six cyclinders"

Hooch - Bootleg liquor

Hood - hoodlum

Hoofer - Dancer

Horsefeathers - an expletive ; same usage as applesauce

Hotsy - Totsy - Pleasing

It - Sex appeal

Iron - a motorcycle

Jack - money


Jake - OK, as in , "Everything is Jake."

Jalopy - Old car

Jane - any female

Java - coffee

Jitney - a car employed as a private bus. Fare was usually five cents; also called a "nickel"
Joe - coffee
John - a toilet
Joint - an establishment
Juice Joint - a speakeasy
Joint - A club, usually selling alcohol
Keen - Attractive or appealing
Kisser - Mouth

Left holding the bag - (1) to be cheated out of one's fair share (2) to be blamed for something

Level with me - be honest

Line - Insincere flattery

Live wire - a lively person

Middle Aisle - To marry

Mrs. Grundy - A priggish or extremely tight-laced person
Moll - A gangster's girl

Neck - Kissing with passion

Nifty - great, excellent

"Now you're on the trolley!" - Now you've got it, now you're right!

Nobody Home - Describes some one who is dumb

On the lam - fleeing from police

On the level - legitimate, honest

On the up and up - on the level

Orchid - an expensive item

Ossified - a drunk person

Owl - a person who's out late

Palooka (1) a below-average or average boxer (2) a social outsider, from the comic strip character Joe Palooka

Pet - Same as neck, but more so

Piker - (1) a cheapskate (2) a coward

Pill - (1) a teacher (2) an unlikable person

Pinch - To arrest

Pipe down - stop talking

Pushover - A person easily convinced or seduced

Putting on the Ritz - after the Ritz hotel in Paris; doing something in high style


Rag-a-muffin - a dirty or disheveled individual

Razz- to make fun of

Real McCoy - The genuine article

Ritzy - Elegant (from the hotel)

Rubes - money or dollars

Sap - a fool

Says you - a reaction of disbelief

Scram - Ask someone to leave immediately

Sheba - A woman with sex appeal (from the move Queen of Sheba) or (e.g. Clara Bow)

Sheik - A man with sex appeal (from the Valentino movies)

Shiv - a knife

Sinker - a doughnut

Speakeasy - An illicit bar selling bootleg liquor

Spifflicated - Drunk. The same as canned, corked, tanked, primed, scrooched, jazzed, zozzled, plastered, owled, embalmed, lit, potted, ossified or fried to the hat

Spiffy - An elegant appearance

Spoon - to neck, or at least talk of love

Struggle Buggy - the backseat of a car. A parent's worst nightmare

Stuck On - Having a crush on

Swanky - Ritzy

Swell - Wonderful. Also: a rich man

Take for a Ride - To drive off with someone in order to bump them off

Tin Pan Alley - the music industry in New York, located between 48th and 52nd street

Tomato - a female

Torpedo - A hired gun

Upchuck - To vomit when one has drunk too much

Wet Blanket - a solemn person, a killjoy

What's eating you? - What's wrong

Whoopee - To have a good time

You slay me - that's funny

back to top...