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Cut a Chogie, Brookyn Boy

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Vince from Brooklyn, New York, remembers growing up there and using the expression cut a chogi! to mean “beat it!” or “get away from here!” He’d assumed it was simply Brooklynese until years later in Alabama, when he used it and a returning service member asked where he’d learned Korean. This bit of slang shows up in the early 1950s among U.S. soldiers who picked it up during the Korean War. It likely stems from a rough translation of a Korean expression meaning “go there.” In Korean, cheogi or jeogi means “there.” In English, the word is variously spelled chogi, chogie, chogey, or chogee, and sometimes with a double g. Variants include pull a chogi and do a chogi. This is part of a complete episode.

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