Green’s Dictionary of Slang

worm n.

1. [17C–early 18C; 1940s+] the penis.

2. [mid-19C] a policeman [? SE worm, an unpleasant, despicable person].

3. [1910s–40s] (US Und.) silk; thus worm-worker, a thief who specializes in stealing silk [play on SE silkworm].

4. [1920s–40s] (US) in pl., spaghetti; thus worms in blood, spaghetti in tomato sauce.

5. [1960s] (US campus) a notably hard worker.

6. [1980s+] (drugs) phencyclidine [ety. unknown].

In compounds

worm farm (n.)

[1960s+] (orig. US) an eccentric, one whose mind is ‘full of worms’; thus living on a worm farm, crazy, eccentric.

worm hustling (n.) (also worm work) [hustle v. (2)]

[1930s–40s] (US Und.) selling fake silk.

In phrases

burp one’s/the worm (v.) (also burp the snake)

[1990s+] to masturbate.

SE in slang uses

In compounds

wormbait (n.) (also worm food, worm meat)

[1940s+] a corpse.

worm-crusher (n.)

[mid-19C] (US) a foot soldier.

wormdick (n.) [dick n.1 (5)]

[1990s+] a very unpleasant person; thus a general term of abuse.

In phrases

are you saving it for the worms? (also are you keeping it for the worms?) [SE worm’s meat, a corpse]

[1940s+] (orig. US) addressed to a supposed virgin, this phr. is intended to shame or bluster her into intercourse.

take one for the worms (v.) [the assumption that drinking will, eventually, prove fatal]

[late 19C–1930s] to have a drink of alcohol.