You’re streaming your favorite episode of Letterkenny the other dayeee when you figure subtitles might be in order if you are going to try to keep up with its signature rapid-fire dialogue. Of course, even flipping on that setting barely does the trick as the TV show, streaming exclusively on Hulu in the States, is pertnear full of lingo only natives of the Great White North would understand. You are probably even scratching your head over what “pertnear” means, aren’t ya?
Well, to be honest, you are not alone. Even as a deep admirer of Jared Keeso and Jacob Tierney’s sitcom (which is a surreal depiction of life in rural Canada), especially for its quotability, there have been times when I was not sure if the quote was appropriate (and not just in general usage), what it really meant, or if it had any meaning at all. Upon researching the lingo further, to my surprise, many of the most bizarre words and phrases commonly used in Letterkenny originate from actual Canadian slang, especially (and a tad less surprisingly) among hockey players.
Having educated myself on how to properly interpret this otherwise comical vocabulary, I say it is time to help someone else “figger it out.” The following are 14 frequent examples of words and phrases from the hilarious series, when you may have heard them, what they mean, and, perhaps, even when it might be a good time to use them yourself, starting with, arguably, the most quotable of them all.
It actually does not take much perceive the context of this phrase, often heard in the full sentence, “Pitter patter, let’s get at ‘er” on Letterkenny. This is Wayne’s (Jared Keeso) way of expressing his own impatience, which occurs often, by telling another to hurry it up with a story or get off their bum and help with chorin’.
As one of the more obscure slang terms heard on Letterkenny, it might be especially difficult for American audiences pinpoint its meaning. Spoken pretty much exclusively by Jonesy (Andrew Herr) and Reilly (Dylan Playfair), especially in conversation about gains at the gym or an upcoming hockey team championship, “ferda” is simply a shorthanded “ferda boys,” as an expression of teamwork or celebration of the jocks’ enduring bromance.
Speaking of Jonesy and Reilly, those dude bros often exhibit behavior similar to what the hicks’ unapologetically define as a “degen.” This is another example of shorthand on Letterkenny, referring to someone who's considered a “degenerate,” or, as Webster’s dictionary puts it, “a person whose behavior is not morally right or socially acceptable.”
While not particularly at the level of a “de-gen,” it is best to be wary of those who are called “spare parts.” Wayne calls Stewart (Tyler Johnston) this when Stewart tries to show Katy (Michelle Mylett) that he's upset with her by simply ignoring her in one Letterkenny episode. The phrase typically refers to a person acting disrespectfully, or, if you would rather go by the Urban Dictionary, it is another way to describe someone as coming from the “bottom of the barrel,” which packs a much harsher punch.
Speaking of a punch, that is what you should expect when you hear someone shout this phrase in Letterkenny. Frankly, “tarps off” translates to “shirts off,” and one might remove their shirt when a fight is a brewing, unless you are Wayne and you prefer to keep your shirt on. But, at least unbutton your cuffs first.
When the tarps do come off, that often tends to be in response to some “chirpin’” - another word for talking trash, to put it simply. While this is an action often demonstrated by much of the cast of Letterkenny, this particular slang term is predominantly recognized by hockey players, which Jonesy and Reilly sure know a thing or two about, having Shoresy (Jared Keeso) as a teammate.
You are most at risk to endure a good deal of “chirpin’” if you happen to be the “schmelt” of your athletic team. This is another example of hockey slang, which refers to the rookie teammate and is used in an especially insulting manner toward the newer member with the poorest performance or least amount of friends.
A typical “schmelt” would most likely earns that title from being “10-ply,” which is another common hockey insult that Wayne has been known to use when describing another character as “soft” on Letterkenny. Much like the gentleness of toilet paper or facial tissues, the levels of “ply” can vary, with “10-ply” indicating a ridiculous level of emotional vulnerability, according to an interview with Jared Keeso.
This is another slang term a hockey player might use, but also one that takes on an entirely different meaning off the ice. A “snipe” could be a particularly difficult goal to score in a game, or an attractive person, as in a “swipey snipey,” to quote Reilly’s description of his Tinder date in the Letterkenny Halloween special, “The Haunting of Modean’s II.”
To throw one last hockey reference at you, we present a term that's basically just that, but with a unique twist. "Sauce,” according to The Hockey Writers, refers to passing a puck to another teammate by hitting it into the air, and then having it successfully land on the tape of the receiving player’s stick.
Speaking of throwing, Letterkenny throws out an insane amount of jokes at warp speed with rarely an “airball” to be found. By that I mean most of the humor does not fall flat, unless you are Daryl (Nathan Dales), whom the rest of the hicks will have no issue informing when one of his puns turns out to be a swing and a miss, usually when trying a little too hard.
Take About 20 Percent Off
Whenever an "airball" of a joke does occur, it could be because someone should have “taken about 20% off” (or so), which basically means to pull back a bit on your current effort or behavior. Wayne, and even Daryl at times, is often forced to remind Squirrelly Dan (K. Trevor Wilson) to do that when he is caught ogling Katy or Bonnie McMurray (Kamilla Kowal) on Letterkenny.
The term “pertnear” might not have even caught too many Letterkenny viewers’ attention, but is at least worth mentioning for the moment it does. It's shorthand for “pretty near,” as in “We are pertnear the end of this list.”
I often quote this frequent Letterkenny slang when I want to emphasize to someone how much I agree with them or understand something they have said. Just like “10-4” translates to “Roger that,” making it a “Texas-sized 10-4” really sends home the message that you are on the same page.
Is your mind blown over the true definition of all these Letterkenny-isms, or are you more surprised that these needed to be explained in the first place? Before you go on being gutty (ahem, I mean rude) about it, take about 20 percent off there, good buddy, and let us know in the comments. Also, be sure to check back for additional information and updates on this cult favorite comedy series, as well as even more in-depth explanations of the details from your favorite movies and TV shows, here on CinemaBlend.
Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children's story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in just about any article related to Batman.
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