language 30 Weird Slang Terms Old-Timey Hobos Actually Used

Kellen Perry
8.1k votes 910 voters 23k views 30 items Embed

List Rules Vote up the outdated bits of hobo terminology you're most eager to use on a regular basis.

Are you tired of 21st century lingo like woke, fleek, tho, adorbs, or [INSERT HOT NEW SLANG HERE]? Maybe it's time to borrow a corn liquor-soaked page from late 19th- and early 20th-century vagrants and start using some old-timey hobo slang!

Not all hobo terminology or historical hobo words are fit for 21st-century sensibilities, however. Telling your friends you'll meet them in the "lee of a reefer," as cool as that sounds, is meaningless unless you are literally going to join them in a refrigerated boxcar. There are also some things hobos used to say that are unforgivably racist and better left unmentioned. But the list below features some hot hobo slang you can safely integrate into your day-to-day life.

So go twist a dream (if you're so inclined), pour a hot cup of pile driver, and check out some of the best hobo slang to bump gums with your friends about.

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Dead Soldier An empty bottle of booze on the side of the road.

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Coffin Nails Cigarettes, cuz they'll put you in the bone orchard.

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Bone Orchard A graveyard.

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Nickel Note A five-dollar bill.

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Cupid's Itch Venereal disease.

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Cabbage Head A hopeless burnout; a drug user incapable of recovery.

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Bump Gums To chat about insignificant things.

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How Strong Are You? "How much cash do you have on you?"

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Grinders Your teeth.

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Scrape The Mug To shave your face.

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Adam And Eve On A Raft How you order two fried eggs on toast, of course.

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Ghost Story A lie told to explain your tardiness or absence.

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Wood Butcher A carpenter.

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Pile Driver Good, strong coffee.

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Knowledge Box A small country schoolhouse.

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Throw Your Guts To snitch.

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Twist A Dream To roll a cigarette.

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Thin Ones Coins worth less than quarters.

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Eat Snowballs To stay in colder climates during the winter.

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Axle Grease Butter.

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Bazoo Mouth, derisively: "Put a cork in your bazoo!"

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Tin Roof A drink that's on the house.

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Decorate The Mahogany To buy drinks for the whole crew.

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Prone The Body To rest, horizontally.

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Toppings Dessert.

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Mix Me A Hike "Pay me what's due so I can leave."

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Balloon Juice Small talk.

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Bone Polisher Get your mind out of the gutter, ya bum: this one means "vicious dog."

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Cheesy To be covered with a rind of dirt and filth.

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Jolt A jail sentence.