Learn American Slang
la la land : in a dreamy state; daydreaming.
Mia didn’t hear a word you said. She’s in la la land.
lame: not good; uncool; not up to expectations.
That movie was so lame, we walked out after 20 minutes.
A: I’ll see you tomorrow.
B: Okay, later.
laid back: easygoing; relaxed;
It’s hard to believe how laid back he can be, especially because he works as a police officer.
lean and mean: small and strong.
After laying off almost half of its employees, the company feels lean and mean and able to compete against other, similar companies.
left field: far away from the center of something; in the wrong position or to have the wrong idea.
When Abigail tried to warn her family about the dangers of global warming, they thought she was out in left field, but now almost all of them believe she was correct.
lemon: a bad car; a bad product.
To avoid buying a lemon, it’s a good idea to check with Consumer Reports and see what they have to say about the car.
let it slide: don’t worry about something; relax
Most people would be very angry about getting a dent in the side of their car, but Bob just let it slide.
lickety-split: very fast.
When it started to rain, everyone watching the soccer match ran to their cars lickety-split.
like: you know; uhhh (used as a non-word)
What do you want to do, like, when you finish college?
lingo: words; unusual expressions.
There’s a lot of new lingo that comes into English when new technology becomes popular.
lip: talking back; to be disrespectful with words–usually when kids talk to adults.
Don’t give me any lip about cleaning your room!
little black book: a book full of women’s phone numbers that a man keeps. The women are old girlfriends or romantic acquaintances0
Mike had to give up his little black book when he got engaged to Samantha.
We got so loaded last night. Now I have a big hangover.
local: a person who lives in the area.
You can tell that this is a restaurant that all the locals go to because everyone knows each other.
long haul: a long period of time.
Right now it looks like we’re losing money, but over the long haul, our investments will be okay.
looker: a beautiful person or a thing.
The new receptionist is a real looker. All the men in the office try to find an excuse to talk to her.
loose canon: a person who speaks without thinking about is said; someone who says dumb things.
Victor would be a good politician if he wasn’t such a loose canon.
lose (one’s) cool: to get really mad.
Mohammed lost his job because he lost his cool at work and swore at his boss.
lose (one’s) cookies: to throw up; vomit. (also, toss (one’s) cookies.)
Teresa drank too much at the party and lost her cookies afterwards.
lose (one’s) marbles: go crazy.
I’ve been waiting to see the doctor for the last hour and it feels like I’m going to lose my marbles.
loser: someone who makes bad choices in life; someone who is unfortunate or unsuccessful.
Matt is such a loser. He can’t keep a job longer than a couple of months.
low-ball: a low offer of money for something.
The people who looked at the house across the street made a low-ball offer and it was accepted by the sellers.
low-down: information; the truth.
Give me the lowdown on Victoria. Is she single? Does she have a boyfriend?
low-life: a person who is not respectable; a bad person.
The low-life that hangs out around that playground got caught selling drugs.
low profile: an attempt at keeping activities secret; not in public view.
Sylvio is trying to maintain a low profile in his community after winning several million dollars in the lottery.
luck out: to be lucky.
Goodwin lucked out when he met his girlfriend. She’s a really nice person.
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Practice using slang in the chat room.