When I was growing up in the north of England, at bedtime my mum always used to say: come on now, up the apples.
In those days, men still wore titfers.
When people asked questions my dad thought were stupid, he’d say: use your loaf.
What I most love about rhyming slang is that you lop the second term off, so no rhyme is left, achieving what is presumed to have been the original purpose: mystification.
- apples and pears = stairs
- tit for tat = hat
- loaf of bread = head
In recent times there’s been a trend to use the names of celebrities or historical personages which I find hilarious.
- The dog’s left a Richard on the lawn.
- I’m staying off work today. I’ve got a terrible Vincent.
- It’s freezing. Turn up the Ronan.
- Let’s go down the pub for a couple of Britneys. On second thoughts, how about a bottle of really good Calvin? Or a glass of vintage Mahatma?
Tell us what they are in the Comments (sorry, no prizes.) And share your own favourites, too.