List of CB slang

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CB slang is the distinctive anti-language, argot or cant which developed among users of Citizens Band radio (CB), especially truck drivers in the United States during the 1970s and early 1980s.[1]

The slang itself is not only cyclical, but also geographical. Through time, certain terms are added or dropped as attitudes toward it change. For example, in the early days of the CB radio, the term "Good Buddy" was widely used.[2]

Nicknames given or adopted by CB radio users are known as 'Handles'.[2][3] Although this practice is all but dead, many truck drivers will call each other 'Hand',[4] or by the name of the company they are driving for.[citation needed]

CB and its distinctive language started in the USA but was then exported to other countries including Mexico, Germany and Canada. In the French-speaking region of Canada, the cultural chauvinism associated with the French language generated conflict and adaptation of the new loan words.[5]

Popular terms[edit]

Law enforcement officers and their equipment[edit]

"Checkpoint Charlie"
a police checkpoint placed to look for drunk drivers, etc. (alludes to the former border crossing between East and West Berlin)
"Evel Knievel"
a police officer on a motorcycle (refers to the popular motorcycle stuntman)
"Gum ball machine" / "bubble gum machine"
a state police patrol car or other police cruiser (refers to the older-style, dome-shaped red rotating/strobe light commonly mounted on the roof of state police cars, which resembles a traditional "penny" gumball machine)
"Miss Piggy"
a female law enforcement officer (refers to the muppet character, derived from the pejorative term "pig" for police officers)
"Mama Bear"
a less derogatory term for a female law enforcement officer.
"Baby Bear"
A very young law enforcement officer.
"Bear in the Air"
A police aircraft in flight.
"Grizzly bear"
a police officer (refers to Smokey Bear, known for wearing a campaign hat very similar to that included in many highway patrol uniforms in the United States)
"Bear Trap"
a police checkpoint, similar to the "Checkpoint Charlie", but concealed.
"Bear Bite" / "Invitation"
Traffic citation
"Bear's Den"
Police station
"Bear Rolling Discos"
A speeding police car with lights flashing
"City Kitty"
a local city law enforcement officer
"Panda Bear"
TX State Trooper
"Polar Bear"
White, unmarked police car
"Bear in the Air/ Air Bear"
Police helicopter
"Bear with ears"
A police officer monitoring the CB airwaves.
"Gay Charlee"
Motorcycle Police
"Flying Donut"
Police Helicopter
"Chicken Coop"
Scale House
"Full Grown"
State Trooper
a police car
"Wall-to-Wall Bears"
A large number of police cars, especially when on a chase.

Trucks and other non-police vehicles[edit]

"Aircraft carrier"
Truck carrying a disassembled aircraft, helicopter, or a small plane.
a Mack Tractor, noted for the bulldog hood ornament.
An ABF truck
"Buster Brown"
a United Parcel Service truck.
a GMC truck.
a Freightliner
a Kenworth truck.
"Meat Wagon"
Ford L-Series truck
a Peterbilt truck.
"Bobtail Rig"
a tractor without a trailer
"Portable Parking Lot", also "Rolling Parking Lot"
A tractor trailer truck loaded with automobiles.
"Pregnant Rollerskate"
a Volkswagen Beetle.
"Dung Beetle"
VW Beetle with a male driver.
"Pumpkin"/ "Pumpkin roller" 
a Schneider National truck.
"Thermos Bottle"
Driver pulling a chemical trailer
A refrigerated trailer or flatbed trailer hauling a refrigerated container.
A straight, flatbed trailer.
A Scania truck. There are around 500 in the whole country, it's rare sight, so it's used only in social media (truck pages in Facebook, YouTube, etc)
"Super Chicken"
A Yellow Freight truck.
"Rolling Refinery"
A tanker, typically carrying fuel.
"Piggy Back"
Truck towing another truck
"Yard Goat"
Tractor used to move trailers in a shipping yard.


Boston, Massachusetts
"Big D"
Dallas, Texas
"Cow Town"
Okeechobee, Florida
"Disney Town"
Anaheim, California and the surrounding areas, a reference to the Disneyland Resort
"Fort God"
A large Church outside of Memphis, TN.
"Guitar Town"
Nashville, Tennessee
Greenspoint area of Houston TX
Atlanta, Georgia
"Idiot Island"
Refers to California.
"Lost Wages"
Las Vegas, Nevada
"Mardi Gras"
New Orleans, Louisiana
"Mickey Mouse"
Orlando, Florida, a reference to Walt Disney World resort
"Monkey Town"
Montgomery, Alabama
"Motor City"
Detroit, Michigan
"Queen City"
Cincinnati, Ohio
"Pizza and Murder"
Chicago IL
"Rock City"
Little Rock, Arkansas
"Shakey City or Shakeytown"
Los Angeles, CA (referencing earthquakes)
"Stack of Bricks"
home, house ("I'm heading back to my stack of bricks")
"The Sticker Patch"
Phoenix, Arizona (refers to cacti in the area)
"T Town"
Texarkana, Texas and / or Texarkana, Arkansas; Tulsa, Oklahoma
"Taco Town"
San Antonio, Texas
"Windy City"
Chicago, Illinois

Other popular terms[edit]

The first stop on a load, or first pick up location.
"02, 03, 04, etc."
The stops in order of their occurrence on a load. 02 would be second stop, 03 is the third, and so on.
A reversal of the ten code "10-4", when asking if someone agrees with something said, or to ask if one's transmission was received. ("That was a nasty wreck. Four-ten?")
"5 by 5"
5 by 5 indicates that you can hear another CB broadcaster perfectly. An exceptionally clear/strong transmission is described as "wall-to-wall and treetop tall".
"10-4"(sometimes simply "4")
Acknowledged. Can also be used to denote or emphasize the agreement ("That's a big 10-4.")
Busy, Stand By [6]
Out of commission.
In service, taking calls
Repeat. Usually used to ask for a repeat.
CB operator will stop broadcasting, but will continue to listen ("I'm 10-10 on the side.")
"10-20" (more often simply "20")
Denotes location, as in identifying one's location ("My 20 is on Main Street and First"), asking the receiver what their current location or destination is ("What's your 20?"), or inquiring about the location of a third person ("Ok, people, I need a 20 on Little Timmy and fast").
An emergency situation ("You got a 10-33 at yardstick (milepost) 136, they got 4-wheelers (autos) all piled up"). Also used for radio checks, as C.W. McCall noted in "Round the World with Rubber Duck": "'Breaker 1-9er for a 10-33,' what we got was the cotton-pickin' BBC."
"3s and 8s"
Love and Kisses
The correct time ("Can I get a 10-36?")
"I'm headed your way." ("I'm 51 to you.")
"10-100" (polite)
Taking a bathroom break, especially on the side of the road. Referencing the use of showing one finger to denote the need to urinate.
Police needed at (location)
"10 In The Wind"
Listening to the CB while driving. Also known as "10-10 in the wind".
The final stop or destination of a load.
"Angry Kangaroo"
A truck with one (or both) of its headlights out
"Back Door"
The rear of a vehicle.
"Bear Bait"
An erratic or speeding driver.[8]
"Break / Breaker"
Telling other CB users that you'd like to start a transmission on a channel. May be followed by either the channel number, indicating that anyone may acknowledge (e.g. "Breaker One-niner" refers to channel 19, the most widely used among truck drivers), or by a specific "handle", which is requesting a particular individual to respond.[7]
"Choke and Puke"
Truck stop
"Copy That" or "Copy"
acknowledgement "I heard you" or "I Understand"
a polite way of showing disgust
Refers to a speed limit of 55 mph.
"Eat 'em Up"
A restaurant.
"Four, Foe"
Refers to 10-4, dropping the 10, also: 'Yeah, Four", "foe", "yeah, foe"(slang for "four").
"Flag in five mile wind"
45 MPH zone.
"Green Stamps"
Cash money (refers to S & H Green Stamps).
"Go-Go Juice"
Gasoline or diesel fuel.
A meal.
"Turtle Race"
Zone slower than 45 MPH.
"Starsky and Hutch"
Team Drivers.
To "Fingerprint" your load would indicate that you will have to load or unload the cargo yourself.
"Three Sisters"
Three big hills on I-80E between SLC Utah and Fort Bridger Wyoming.
"Good Buddy"
In the 1970s, this was the stereotypical term for a friend or acquaintance on a CB radio. In the late 80s and early 90s it usually indicated a same-sex significant other.[1][2][7]
"Good Numbers / 3s and 8s"
used to wish a fellow traveler good luck.
The nickname a CB user uses in CB transmissions. Other CB users will refer to the user by this nickname. To say "What's your handle?" is to ask another user for their CB nickname.[7]
"Hundred Mile Coffee"
Very strong coffee
"Jabber / Jabbering Idiot / Babble / Babbling Idiot"
Someone using foreign language, e.g. Italian, on the CB.
"Kojak with a Kodak"
Law enforcement with a radar gun.
"Lot Lizard"
A prostitute in a rest area.
"Credit Card Machine"
Narrow Two Lane Bridge.
"Fighter Pilot"
Someone changing lanes often.
"Pickle Park"
Rest Area
"Cash box"
Toll Booth
"Turkey Hearse"
Truck with load of turkeys headed for slaughter.
"Rubber necker"
looking at something on the side of the road causing a backup.
"4 wheeler"
any vehicle with 4 wheels
"Seat Cover"
An attractive woman in a vehicle, especially when scantily-clad.
Pickup drivers hanging out with truckers on highways and elsewhere.
"On Your Donkey"
Used to warn of a tailgater, as in, "You got a meat wagon on your donkey"
"Outdoor TV"
A drive-in theatre.
"Suicide Jockey"
A driver who is hauling dangerous goods such as explosives.
Not participating in conversation but listening only, despite having the capability of speaking. This is not the same as listening in using a simple receiver, as the person sandbagging can transmit using the two-way radio, but chooses not to.[9][10] It is done to monitor people for entertainment or for gathering information about the actions of others. Often, CBer's will sandbag to listen to others' responses to their previous input to a conversation, sometimes referred to a "reading the mail."[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Richard David Ramsey (5 Mar 2004), "The People Versus Smokey Bear: Metaphor, Argot, and CB Radio", The Journal of Popular Culture, XIII (2): 338–344, doi:10.1111/j.0022-3840.1979.1302_338.x 
  2. ^ a b Preston, Benjamin (February 21, 2013). "How To Talk On A CB Radio". Jalopnik. Retrieved September 19, 2015. 
  3. ^ "Citizens Band (CB) Service". Federal Communications Commission. Retrieved September 19, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Trucker Slang and CB Radio Lingo". Retrieved September 19, 2015. 
  5. ^ S Aléong, M Chrétien (1981), "Can Smokey the Bear Speak French? Adapting CB Lingo in Canadian French", American Speech, JSTOR 455122 
  6. ^ CB Ten Codes
  7. ^ a b c d Howard Jackson, Etienne Zé Amvela, "CB talk", Words, meaning and vocabulary: an introduction to modern English lexicology 
  8. ^ - CB Slang Dictionary
  9. ^ 'The Truckers Place' Truckers Slang
  10. ^ ACBRO Team Inc 1980 - Advocates For Australian CB Radio Clubs And Operators
  11. ^ Getting Familiar With CB Codes, Phrases, and Terminology

External links[edit]