After a long night in Atlantic City performing “research” for Boardwalk Empire: The Birth, High Times, and Corruption of Atlantic City, a group of Audible staffers slunk out of a casino thinking they were completely busted. That’s when they hit the jackpot – behind a dusty, old, cobweb-covered moonshine barrel, they discovered a few pages of genuine Prohibition-Era slang, a true relic of one of history’s most storied periods. They turned to Kevin C. Fitzpatrick, President of the Dorothy Parker Society, to authenticate and restore the find. Now, we present to you a treasure trove of flapper secrets, including the origins of words and phrases still used today, if not fondly remembered, like cat’s pajamas, lollygagger, blind date, home wrecker, gadget, and behind the eight ball.
Oliver Wyman reads The Speakeasy Guide and captures the rich atmosphere and enduring cultural influence of the roaring ‘20s. While the anecdote about Audible staffers stumbling out of an anonymous casino might be in doubt, one thing’s for sure – this fun listen is the bee’s knees.
If you watched the video version of this guide on our homepage, note that this is the extended version, with approximately 10 additional minutes of words and phrases to enjoy.
Be sure to check out Boardwalk Empire: The Birth, High Times, and Corruption of Atlantic City the inspiration for our Speakeasy Guide, as well as the upcoming HBO® series, written by Nelson Johnson and narrated by Joe Mantegna, in our store now.
©2010 Kevin C. Fitzpatrick (P)2010 Audible, Inc.
An old broad that enjoys books of all types. Would rather read than write reviews though. I know what I like, and won't be bothered by crap.
This is a short 14 minute overview of Roaring Twenties slang. Yes I would recommend it.
I was amazed about how many terms we still use today and the background meaning for them.
Boardwalk Empire, Any F. Scott Fitzgerald or Dorothy Parker. Several authors are mentioned in this short essay. If you are interested in the 1920's era that by all means read the people who were writing at that time.
His inflection is great, and I enjoyed him.
No, it's funny not moving.
Who would have known that 23 skidoo and 86'd were addresses? Very interesting stuff.
I'm an old soul trapped in a young mans body with unlimited energy, yet limited resources! I read and listen to audio books almost daily and am so happy to have discovered some great new authors recently!
I recently listened to Lair of the White Worm, narrated by Oliver Wyman, which is what brought me to Audible and I found he has over 100 books narrated under his name, at which time I perused some newer authors and narrators that sounded pretty awesome. I loved Wymans "dated" narration style as he explains the meanings of phrases used in its era and how these slangs are used in our generation. He brings the old timer to the stage, which makes this audio more authentic and fun to listen to, like grandpa or your great uncle reliving the way it used to be!
the narrator himself
he sounded as he he lived back in that time and was sharing his personal experience
how language has a 'style' all its own in every generation
Professional librarian type, amateur historian.
Is this worth 1 credit? No. But if you get it for a deal give it a listen because it is only a few minutes long and quite informative as well as entertaining. You'll learn about expressions that are still in use and other forms of slang that aren't used as much.
Possibly, it would depend on the topic.
I thought this was interesting. It certainly was a topic I had never given any attention to.
I liked listening to him since it is about words. He made it more interesting than reading.
music nut, history buff
Yes. It was brief but the speaker included a lot of fun details.
Learning so many words used by the flappers and speakeasy patrons. I always wanted to know what it was like to go out at a time when the law might catch you at any minute.
Learning about the terms used in the dating scene. It reminded me of Dorothy Parker.
These words aren't used much today, but they make it easier to understand other stories from the same era.
I think I would have liked living back then. With the law against drinking, you had to find creative ways to get around it. This produced a two-level society which intensified friendships and the urgency of life... something we seem to be missing even in our more free atmosphere of today.
Great to listen to! One of the best free selections I've made!
Really enjoyed this listen! Thanks Grand Dad for being a boot Legger all those years ago!! HONEST! I grew up listening to a lot of these but there were quite a few Even an old Fogey like me had never heard!!!
This is a quick little list and explanation of slang used during Prohibition. Some of the terms are still in use, and it's interesting to see how long they've been used. This list is written in a glib manner that allows slang descriptions to flow from one term to the next naturally.
If you like words or history, you may like this.
There really isn't a story here, but since we can't review until we mark the stars we shall simply look past this. This is totally worthy of a listen. I actually stopped what I was doing to pay attention, laughed a little, then attempted my new vocabulary on my sweetheart. All were amused.
I don't know about the print version of the book or the TV show. But this was fun to listen to.
I did not know that Dorothy Parker was so influential in the slang terms of 1920's. Thanks for that.
Well, it's not really a book so that's hard to answer. It was okay bonus matierial - but not a must listen.
Well, it's only 15 minutes long. The authentic language I guess.
A good listen for a die-hard fan. It's free so you can't really complain much!
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