‘wood-and-water joey’: meaning and origin

Australia, 1847—an odd-job man—‘wood-and-water’ alludes to the phrase ‘hewer of wood and drawer of water’, designating a labourer of the lowest kind—‘joey’ is perhaps the noun denoting a young kangaroo, and by extension anything young or small

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a disparaging term: ‘Corbynista’

UK, 2015—(depreciative) a supporter of Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Labour Party and Leader of the Opposition from 2015 to 2020—coined after nouns such as ‘Sandinista’—intended to liken Corbyn’s supporters at best to radical socialists and at worst to cultists

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‘porky’ (rhyming slang for ‘lie’)

In British English, the noun ‘porky’ (also ‘porkie’) is short for ‘porky pie’ (also ‘porkie pie’), which is an alteration of ‘pork pie’, rhyming slang for the noun ‘lie’.

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attributive use of ‘postcode’

UK, 1993—meaning: influenced or determined by a person’s locality or postal address—in phrases such as ‘postcode discrimination’—frequently with reference to the unequal provision of healthcare

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‘omnishambles’: meaning and origin

a situation that has been completely mismanaged—from ‘omni-’ and ‘shambles’—coined by Tony Roche in the British television series The Thick of It (3rd series, episode 1, 24 October 2009)

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‘to drink the Kool-Aid’: meanings and origin

USA, 1978—to commit suicide; to demonstrate unquestioning obedience or loyalty—alludes to a mass suicide, in 1978, by members of the Peoples’ Temple in Jonestown, Guyana, who drank a cyanide-laced drink thought to be similar to Kool-Aid

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‘Mr. Plod’: meaning and origin

UK, 1963—‘Mr. Plod’, also ‘P.C. Plod’, ‘Plod’: a humorous or mildly derogatory appellation for a policeman or for the police—alludes to ‘Mr. Plod’, the name of the policeman in stories by the English author of children’s fiction Enid Blyton

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‘Dutching’: meaning and origin

UK, 1989—the practice of sending food destined for the British market for irradiation in a country, typically the Netherlands, where this process is permitted, in order to mask any bacterial contamination before it is put on sale—from ‘Dutch’ and the suffix ‘-ing’, forming nouns denoting an action

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‘brown bomber’: meaning and origin

Australia, 1950—a traffic warden in the state of New South Wales—‘brown’ probably refers to the colour of those traffic wardens’ uniform—‘bomber’ may refer to the fact that many of those traffic wardens were originally war veterans; or perhaps to the Australian-English use of the noun ‘bomb’ for an old car

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