If you’re planning a trip to Ireland, or just a jaunt to an Irish enclave in your city, knowing some funny Irish words and phrases can do a lot to increase your popularity (or give you a head’s up on what the Irish natives are saying!)
Just keep your cool and bide your time. You don’t want to be deemed “thick” (as in “stupid”), or included in a “shower of savages” (Irish slang for ignorant folks.)
In fact, if you jump in too fast without knowing how it’s done, the locals might just “slag” you. No, they won’t be throwing gravel at you. Slagging is a form of light mockery. They’d just be making fun of you, but don’t take it to heart.
They mean well. They’re merely “acting the maggot,” that is, they’d playing around with your head. The Irish have an excellent sense of humor, and if you spend much time around them, you’ll discover it for yourself.
These are just some of the funny Irish words and phrases you can pick up if you keep your ear to the ground.
Beer is the Irish drink of choice, and they brew it very well. But don’t overindulge, or the bar patrons might think you’re “fluthered.” That’s when you can’t keep your butt on your bar stool.
Want a pint of great beer? Don’t ask for a glass. Tell the bartender you’re in the market for a pint of “plain.” That’s the local Guinness beer of which the Irish are so fond.
If you’d rather have a shot of vodka, try asking for a “naggin.” That’s how the Irishmen ask for their drink.
A night on the town, with a substantial measure of bar hopping, is known as being “out on a tear.”
If you’re really sloshed, you’re “locked” or “langered.” If you’re under the table, the locals will say you’re “ossified,” “paralytic,” or “plastered” (the latter word being one that’s common in American lingo.)
And if you’re drinking outside, that’s simply not done. It’s known as “knacker drinking,” and it’s not a compliment.
Sometimes it’s best to forego the booze, and have a “mineral” (a soft drink.) Your head will thank you tomorrow.
it’s not surprising the Irish have a huge variety of words from which to choose to colorfully describe alcoholic overindulgence!
Want to avoid food poisoning or bedbugs? Stay out of any local hostelry that the Irish consider to be a “kip.”
On the other hand, if a restaurant serves superb food, it’s “Mi Daza,” or in other words, it’s excellent food. That’s a slang term particular to the Cork area.
Take your umbrella with you if it’s “lashing” out, or if you forgot it, just “leg it” (meaning run quickly.) If you solved the problem by putting a newspaper on your head or keep out the rain, the locals will approve and say you’re “sucking diesel.”
It doesn’t sound too pleasant, but "sucking diesel” is a compliment for how you used your head to avoid being drenched.
If you meet a pal who introduces you to his parents, you may not understand the lingo. An “oul fella” is Dad, and Mom is the “oul dear” or the “oul wan.” A girlfriend is “oul doll.”
But in Ireland, you’d be going to the “pictures” if you want to see a movie. After all that running around, you might be a bit “shattered” (as in tired), but beware of pickpockets. In Dublin, a sly person you have to keep your eye on is a “sleeveen,” and it’s used to describe non-Dubliners (these guys stick together!)
Keep your ears open, and you’re very apt to hear even more funny Irish words and phrases.