‘Brylcreem Boy’: meanings and origin

UK, 1941—a fighter pilot in the Royal Air Force; also used by the military land forces of any member of the R.A.F.—originally referred to WWII advertisements for Brylcreem hair cream, featuring a fighter pilot

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‘to go home in an ambulance’: meaning and origin

to get a severe beating—popularised in UK & Ireland in the 2nd half of the 20th century through its use in chants by supporters at Association-Football matches, chiefly to threaten opposing away supporters

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‘blood wagon’: meaning and origin

UK—an ambulance (i.e., a vehicle designed to carry sick or injured people)—originally (Royal Air Force slang, 1921): a specially equipped airplane for carrying sick or injured people

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‘grass widow’: meanings and origin

a married woman living apart from her husband (18th century)—originally (16th century) an unmarried woman who has borne an illegitimate child—alludes to a bed of grass as a typical place for illicit sexual intercourse

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‘passion-killer’: meanings and origin

UK—anything which discourages or inhibits sexual activity—originally (1943, British military slang): the sturdy, practical and unattractive underwear issued to female service personnel

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‘Frankenstein food’: meanings and origin

genetically modified food—but had been used earlier by members of Weight Watchers in the sense of food one is addicted to—in reference to ‘Frankenstein; Or, The Modern Prometheus’ (1818), by Mary Shelley

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‘Peter Grievous’: meaning and origin

a person who whines or complains—UK, 1769, humorous—‘Peter’ is used as a generic forename, and the adjective ‘grievous’ (meaning ‘aggrieved’) is treated as a surname

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