+3 votes
in Fun & Humor ☻ by (7.6k points)

I actually already KNOW the answer to this...but Rooster posted a Q about MAD Magazine, and this quote was published in MAD in the 1950's. Customers begged the editors to explain, but MAD Magazine would never relent. 

Some hints: this is British slang, and comes from a novel by English mystery writer Margery Allingham. However, if you can't get it I won't be like Mad magazine and never tell, if you cannot get it and want to know, I will tell you!

Here it is again; "It's crackers to slip a rozzer the dropsy in snide."

4 Answers


Blimey Virginia, I haven't the foggiest!

Virginia Ladyhorse

Hi Dear Ladyhorse,,.I will just tell you...Marianne and Other Tink have parsed it out a bit if you care to explore deeper, but the translation is roughly this:

"You are nutso/wacko if you ever try to pay off a bribe to a police officer with counterfeit money!"


Well, I knew that "it's crackers" means it's crazy, but I first guessed the rest meant to use a razor to cure a case of the dropsy. Wrong.  :D

Well, I cheated and looked it up, so now I know what it really means.  I won't spoil it, so I'll just give a hint that Johnny Hooker (Robert Redford) did that to the crooked detective, Snyder, in the movie The Sting, one of my all-time favorites.  Screamingly funny.  :D :D :D

Virginia TheOtherTink

Oh...the first time I ever watched THE STING, well just one of life's watersheds here!


I was just a kid then and sure couldn't remember that one so I looked it up and read and remembered. Mad magazine is a classic for the ages.

It's crackers to slip a rozzer the dropsy in snide. | Name-Brand Ketchup.

Virginia Rooster

Oh yes, I certainly remember Spy v. Spy!


Lol - no, I did not hear much about the MAD magazine, but in England, it was popular, except for certain satirized people, like the Royal family, for instance. And no, I did not know this expression. But I am ready to learn further ... :D:D:D

So, I had to look up slang vocabulary and check, as in this case, the word "crackers" seems to stand for "crazy" (insane) or "mad", "rozzer" for "police officer", dropsy (not likely to be an oedema), rather for "tip" or "bribe", "snide" most certainly for "fake" or "counterfeit" (besides derogatory, mocky or an unpleasant person) - and I deepened into more info about MAD, Margery Allingham and the novel, referred to by the infos on the MAD magazine:



the characters:



I think that the links answer the question, but they invite to read more about it.

Virginia Marianne

Marianne, that is a beautiful work-up of this magnificent slang expression from England, hurrah for you!

Marianne Marianne

Thank you, Virginia, you gave some helpful clues - lol.