Skrrt Skrrt! The Obscure Rap Slang Quiz


By: Jonnathan Chadwick

7 Min Quiz

Image: Lorado / E+ / Getty Images

About This Quiz

If rap slang sounds like gibberish to you, it just means you have to brush up on some everyday figures of speech. Very few (if any) rappers invent slang out of thin air. Nothing is random. So before you begin the quiz, here are some figures of speech you should familiarize yourself with. 

You need to know what similes and metaphors are, since a lot of slang is based on those. You should know what portmanteaus are, which are words that blend two or more words into one, like brunch (breakfast + lunch) or motel (motor + hotel). Do you remember onomatopoeia? It's a word that phonetically sounds like its meaning, like splash or chomp or om nom nom. 

Metonymy uses a single word to represent the larger whole it is associated with (i.e. Washington can mean the government or tongue can mean language). Synecdoche is similar to metonymy, but where metonymy uses a word that is associated with a whole, synecdoche uses a word that is part of the whole (i.e. nice wheels = nice car,  boots = soldiers, and head count = person count). Metalepsis takes figurative speech and uses it for a new meaning. The classic example is using the maxim, "the early bird catches the worm," and saying "I have to catch the worm tomorrow," which means "I have to wake up early tomorrow to be successful."

Now that all of that is out of the way, let's begin.

What is common rap slang that means to quickly get away?

Skrrt skrrt is the sound a car makes when quickly driving away. It's commonly known as "peeling out," "burning out" or "leaving rubber," and the sound comes from over-revving the engine, which makes the tires rotate so fast the friction creates smoke.


Someone who is true and real is called what?

Trill is a portmanteau of the words "true" and "real." If a person is both true and real - which doesn't just mean to exist but means trustworthy in this context - they are trill. Someone can be triller than another, and someone can also be the trillest person in the room.


If you pull up to the club in an expensive car, wearing several diamond chains and flash wads of cash, you're doing what?

Braggadocio is not only rampant in rap lingo, it's at the crux of a successful career in the genre. Rappers who don't stunt, flex or floss at every chance they get are known as conscience rappers and aren't nearly as famous. Fans like rap because of the stuntin,' flexin' and flossin,' which are all words that mean showing off.


Which of the following is a common alternative pronunciation of the word, "man"?

Some could say the word "man" is pronounced "mane" in the deep south, and this pronunciation is very common in the hip-hop community of the south—specifically Memphis, TN—but it has also been popularized by California rappers like E-40 and Too $hort.


A rapper who has a lot of style and swag has a lot of what?

Sauce is another way of saying swag and style. A nice style means you're fly, but if you're fly and you have swag (confidence and coolness), you have sauce. The sauciest person in the room is, in hip-hop lingo, the grooviest (in 1950s lingo) person in the room.


Someone who can get difficult-to-obtain items is known as what?

The plug is a supplier or resource for valuable items that aren't always easy to find. Walmart might be the plug for inexpensive groceries, your local bodega might be the plug for calling cards to an obscure country, or you may have a plug for sold-out concert tickets.


What is slang for $1 million?

A C-note is a one-hundred dollar bill ($100). Ten C-notes ($1,000) is a band or a rack. Ten bands ($10,000) is a stack. Ten stacks ($100,000) is a book. Ten books ($1 million) is a ticket. All of this money may be called bread, cheese, blue cheese (new currency), M's (millions) or simply, the bag.


An expensive watch without any diamonds added to it is called what?

Some rappers who may not want to call much attention to themselves can opt for a Plain Jain Rollie (Rolex), which would be a Rolex that isn't littered with diamonds or other jewels. Although plain, one of these watches—a new Patek Philippe, for example—could cost a ticket or more.


What are bloody shoes?

All Christian Louboutin shoes feature the signature red bottom. Legend has it that designer Christian Louboutin saw an employee painting her fingernails red and decided to paint the soles of a prototype shoe red one day. Ever since, "red bottoms"—which range in price from $600 to $6,000—have been a status symbol worn by celebrities all over the world.


Which of the following slang words is used to describe members of a rival group?

Ops, in hip-hop slang, isn't used as an abbreviation for operation, but as an abbreviation for opposition. The opposition can be anybody who is against anything you're doing and anyone who wants to see you fail. They can be a hater or a rival gang member.


Have you heard Lil' Troy's lines "Wanna be a balla, shot caller, 20-inch blades on the Impala"? What are blades?

There are so many different names for wheels or rims that it would take too long to list them all, but blades are one of them. Specifically, blades are wheels that are 20 inches or bigger. Anything smaller need not be mentioned in a rap song. Nobody stunts with 19-inch wheels.


If you're whippin' the whip around town, what are you doing?

Before cars, people traveled via horse and buggy, and before that, people traveled via horse. Both were controlled by a whip, so when the first steering wheels were added to cars, it was called the whip. That word has lasted more than a century and is now synecdochically used to identify a car.


In the song "Ebonics," rapper Big L explains rap slang. One lyric states: "If you 730, that mean you _____."

This phrase is an example of a legal term entering the hip-hop world and becoming a popular slang term. The 730 psychological exam is a test that checks the mental wellness of an individual. If you call someone 730, you're calling them crazy.


What is Philadelphia slang for a person, place or thing?

This is a pretty regional thing, but is catching on more and more in rap songs. Every part of the country has its own slang term for nouns. In New York City, for instance, the word joint means the same thing. One could say, "let's go the taco joint on 25th St."


When you're wearing so much diamond jewelry the "ice" is melting, you're what?

Drippin' is flossin', flexin' or stuntin' hard, like real hard. If you have that much ice around your neck and wrist, you're simply drippin' with diamonds or sauce, which is a slang term for style. Icy jewels can also be called water, so dripping is a logical next step.


Ghost, Phantom and Wraith are what?

Legend has it way back in the early 1900s, someone remarked that the Rolls Royce car was so quiet it was like a ghost. When Rolls Royce released its next car, it was called the "new phantom" to differentiate it from the first model. Ever since, the model names have stuck and are now heavily referenced in many rap songs.


The creative and unique path you pave in life is called your what?

When a rapper says "get off my wave," they're saying stop copying me or do your own thing. One's wave is one's personal style they craft and plan to ride to success, wealth and happiness. It's not a good thing to ride someone else's wave.


If a rapper spends $250,000 at the club, the next morning they might brag about it by saying, "I made _____ last night."

To make a movie is to do something epic that most people only see in the movies. The life of a rapper is, or at least portrayed to be, extravagant and amazing. Most people can only imagine what they do on a nightly basis based on stuff they see on television.


Where is Drake from?

Drake (real name: Aubrey Graham) is from Toronto, Canada and once upon a time (1967), the Toronto area of Canada was six cities: Toronto, North York, Scarborough, York and Etobicoke, and East York. In 1998 they were all merged into one to form Toronto.


Why don't criminals like Jakes?

Jakes (the plural of the name Jake) is a slang word for the police and it's not exactly known how this came to be. It is said that in the late 1980s there was a TV show called "Jake and the Fatman" and one of the detectives in the show was named Jake Styles. It caught on ever since.


What does "Who wants this smoke?" mean?

There is no shortage of fighting slang in the hip-hop community. Beef is probably the most popular one, but recently smoke is taking over as the premiere slang for trouble or confrontation. It may stem from gun smoke, but in this context it has nothing to do with fire or smoking.


If you're high on life for reasons that only you know, you may say what?

To be "on one" can sometimes refers to being under the influence of a mind-altering substance, but in its purest form, it means you're on cloud nine and only you know why. You're enjoying peace, happiness, joy and euphoria and there's nothing anyone can do or say to ruin that for you.


In 1960s slang, someone who "flipped their wig" translates to what hip-hop slang?

To trip or be trippin' means to flip out and lose control of your emotions over something really small and irrelevant. If someone gets bent out of shape because you didn't notice their new shoelaces, you may politely ask them to stop trippin'.


Which of the following words is either an abbreviation for a facsimile or a synonym for truth, depending on context?

Fax is a slang word for something that is truer than true. It is an alternate spelling of the word "facts." If somebody says, "LeBron James is one of the the best basketball players in the world." You could say, "That's a fact," or you could simply say, "fax."


Which of these cars is unlikely to come equipped with butterfly doors?

Butterfly doors are doors that swing upwards instead of outwards when opened. The orientation in which your car doors open is a huge status symbol in rap music. Some of the cooler door types are: canopy doors, gullwing doors, scissor doors, suicide doors and swan doors. Rappers don't brag about the sliding doors found on most minivans.


If a man or a woman is exclusively dating someone, people may say he or she is what?

To be cuffed means to be in an exclusive relationship with another. To cuff someone is to claim them as your significant other, and cuffin' season is the time of the year (if this is a real thing) where people look to find and settle down with a significant other.


When Kendrick Lamar said, “I made a hundred thousand and I freaked it,” what did he do?

Freaked it is one of those terms that can mean a number of things, and in this context, it can mean any one of these three things. To make $100,000 and freak it means to multiply it, spend it all, or show it off in a boastful manner. The interpretation is yours, which is the point of art in the first place.


In 2015 a Chinese businessman famously used what to buy a $170 million painting?

Rappers have bragged about using a black card for ages. It is the slang term for the American Express Centurion Card, which has a $5,000 - $7,500 one-time enrollment fee and a $2,500 annual fee. It has plenty of perks, one of them being no spending limit. In 2015 a Chinese businessman went to Christie's Auction House and bought a $170 million painting (Modigliani's 1917 "Nu couche") with the card. That's quite a perk.


What is juice?

If you have the juice, you have respect and credibility in the streets and among the people who live in the area. To have the juice also means to have a lot of people wish to be with you romantically.


If your life is on the line and you get one phone call, who are you calling?

A R.O.D. or a Rod stands for Ride or Die, meaning someone you can't live life without and someone you will trust with your life. It could be your BFF (Best Friend Forever (not rap slang)) or your BAE (Before Anyone Else (significant other)), but it is always the person who rides or dies for you.


When you're broker than broke and have absolutely no money, you may say what?

If you're so broke that you don't even have a pot to pee in, not only do you not have a toilet or functional plumbing, you don't even have a spare pot to go to the bathroom in. This phrase goes back to at least the 1930s, where it was found in the novel "Nightwood" by Djuna Barnes, who added "Or a window to throw it out of."


Dominating something or someone is known as what?

To slay means to dominate or be wildly successful at something. If you take the SAT and have a really good feeling once you finish, you could say you slayed the test. If you're slaying, you're "killing it," no matter what the occasion.


What does it mean if your diamonds are dancing?

When a rapper says their diamonds are dancing, it means light is refracting off them at all angles, making it appear as if they are dancing. Only the clearest types of diamonds will visibly dance from a distance. That's why you'll hear rappers brag about flawless or VVS (very very slightly flawed) diamonds in their songs.


Why do some rappers wish others a "Happy C-Day" instead of a "Happy B-Day"?

The Crips street gang started in 1969 in Los Angeles and is one of the largest street gangs in the country with an estimated 35,000 members. Its rival is the Bloods gang, and because they're rivals, Crips members replace the "b" in most words with a "c" just to further divide the two.


Why do some rappers say they are "boolin'" instead of "coolin'"?

The Bloods street gang started in 1972 in Los Angeles to compete with the influence of the Crips gang in the area, and they enlist an estimated 25,000 members. Its rival is the Crips gang, and because they're rivals, Bloods members replace the "c" in most words with a "b" to further divide themselves.


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