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Bingo Calls, Number Nicknames and Rhyming Slang – 10 to 30

Author: Nick Wright

Whether you enjoy playing jackpot bingo on free bingo sites or prefer to visit your local house of bingo for a social game you are likely to have heard some interesting and intriguing jackpot bingo calls and number nicknames along the way. This article is a continuation of our rundown of the back stories and origins of the more unusual of these jackpot bingo calls and rhyming slang and will pick up where we left off last time, at the number ten.

The first of the more unlikely jackpot bingo calls that you may hear at a house of bingo from after the number ten is the calling of number 14 as ‘lawnmower’. Whilst I can’t quite explain why it is relevant to jackpot bingo, the reason why 14 is equated to a lawnmower is because the very first lawnmowers had 14 inch blades. The number 21 throws up one of the most traditional of all jackpot bingo calls when the number is announced at a house of bingo as ‘key to the door’. This stems from the fact that 21 was the traditional age at which a person was seen as having matured into an adult and was rewarded by their parents with a key to the door of the family home.

Number 23 is often followed by the call of ‘the lord is my shepherd’ at a house of bingo or on free bingo sites and this is clearly a jackpot bingo call with a religious element. It is in fact a biblical reference to the fact that ‘the lord is my shepherd’ is the first line of psalm 23, explaining the relation to this particular number. A prime example of a jackpot bingo call which is still used despite having lost a great deal of its topical relevance is the call of ‘half a crown’ for the number 26. This call refers to pre-decimalised currency when ‘half a crown’ was the equivalent of two shillings and sixpence or ‘two and six’.

Whilst this rundown is not going to make a habit of discussing the jackpot bingo calls which are born out of the visual appearance of the numbers in question, an exception must be made for the number 27 purely for the absurdity of the call itself. This is the case as at your local house of bingo you will hear 27 called amusingly as ‘a duck and a crutch’ because the two supposedly resembles a duck and the seven its crutch.

That is where we will end this section of our rundown of amusing and interesting jackpot bingo calls, but keep checking back for the next edition which will pick up the story from the number 30.