Green’s Dictionary of Slang

bull n.6

[euph. for bullshit n.; but note OF. boul, boule, fraud, deceit, trickery]

1. (orig. US) lies, flattery, insincere talk of any kind.

implied in bull con
[US]B. Fisher A. Mutt in Blackbeard Compilation (1977) 20: That old ‘sure thing’ bull works wonders. They all fall for it.
[US]O.O. McIntyre New York Day By Day 27 Sept. [synd. col.] All of that bull I peddled doesn’t go. I want my watch and my scarfpin.
[US]Wood & Goddard Dict. Amer. Sl. 9: bull. Nonsense, exaggerated lies. Hence, bull-thrower, toreador, etc.
[US](con. 1900s) S. Lewis Elmer Gantry 185: I don’t believe all this bull about never having a good time.
[US]J. Weidman What’s In It For Me? 5: She took another stab at the pals-in-time-of-need bull.
[US] ‘Whitman College Sl.’ in AS XVIII:2 Apr. 154/2: sling the bull, bull, bull session. Closely related terms [...] heated discussion.
[US]N. Algren Man with the Golden Arm 108: What kind of bull was Frankie feeding Zosh.
[Aus]D. Niland Big Smoke 56: I came here to get the truth out of you, and no bull.
[US]N. Heard Howard Street 176: People believe that bull.
[US]C. Hiaasen Skin Tight 214: This town is gone to shit [...] when a guy with a gun has to put up with that kind of bull.
[UK]Observer Mag. 22 Aug. 14: You say playing the game is all, and I say bull.
[UK]Guardian G2 26 Jan. 22: Making experts – with their plum in mouth attitude – talk bull.
[UK]K. Sampson Killing Pool 138: They’ll feed you a load of bull, but with heroin addicts and the like you just never know.

2. (orig. milit.) unnecessary routine or discipline; thus bulled-up, dressed according to the strictest military regulations.

[US] ‘Peter Pullin’ Blues’ in G. Logsdon Whorehouse Bells Were Ringing (1995) 273: Son, this damned jack-offin’ bull, it has the ’sylums full, They’ll put acid on your cock, cut out your balls.
[UK]G. Kersh They Die with Their Boots Clean 132: Grouse about regimental bull-and-baloney [...] Go on, grouse!
[Aus](con. 1941) E. Lambert Twenty Thousand Thieves 91: The corporal [...] has to pass on the bull that the officers and sergeants hand out and take the kicks from the men when he does it.
[UK]B. Hill Boss of Britain’s Underworld 143: We were amused by this inquiry [into counterfeit petrol coupons], held with all its pomp and bull.
[UK]A. Sillitoe Sat. Night and Sun. Morning 125: The bastards had us polishing the billet floor until ten, or pulling our rifles through. Bull we had from getting there to coming away.
[UK](con. WWII) B. Aldiss Soldier Erect 73: Exhortations from the sergeants to show bags of bull as we approached the town.
[UK]B.S. Johnson All Bull 28: A bulled-up little runt who brandished a black stick and turned out to be the guard commander. [Ibid.] 150: Bull in the barrack-room and drill on the square dominate a soldier’s activity.

3. see bullshit n.

In derivatives

bullfest (n.) [-fest sfx]

a group, usu. of men, bonding through conversation, reminiscence, jokes, songs etc.

[US]Reno Gaz.-Jrnl (NV) 26 Nov. 6/5: [At] ‘The Bannock Bullfest of the Independent Order of the Midnight Sons’ [...] the head and heart are cheered by new and oft-told tales, songs and a general good time.
[US]K. MacLeish letter 17 Sept. in Rossano Price of Honor (1991) 21: We planned to keep the owner engaged in a vigorous bull fest.
[UK]P. Marks Plastic Age 288: The monthly meetings were nothing but ‘bull fests,’ or as one cynical member put it, ‘We wear a gold helmet on our sweaters and chew the fat once a month’.
[US]Mencken Amer. Lang. (4th edn) 581: The only report that I have been able to find on the vocabulary of incarcerated orphans indicates that the young inmates speak a jargon made up of borrowings from both school slang and criminal cant. From the former come bull-fest, collegiate, nifty and pash.
[US]Bayler & Carnes Last Man Off Wake Island 123: The boys would come over and we’d ‘shoot the breeze’ in long bull-fests.
[US]Miami Dly News-Record (Miami, OK) 21 Mar. 1/4: They also told of an early morning ‘bullfest’ by students [...] the talk in the discussion session was loud and perhaps ‘a little rough’.
Statesman Jrnl (Salem, OR) 2 Oct. 1/1: We also settled a lot lf the world’s problems at after-hour bull-fests far into the night.
[US]Rocky Mount Telegram (NC) 16 Jan. 23/1: One evening when a bunch of us were sitting around at a bullfest [etc].

In compounds

bull artist (n.) [-artist sfx]

a braggart, a boaster, one who lies, deceives.

Greenville News (SC) 12 Oct. 8/5: [headline] Blood and Thunder Story Fires Up Boys in Greer / Bad Actor Brought to This City and Found to Be / ‘Bull’ Artist.
Eugene Guard (OR) 26 Feb. 4/1: That knocker who says college graduates are too mouthy probably thinks A.B. stands for bull artist.
[US](con. 1910s) J.T. Farrell Young Lonigan in Studs Lonigan (1936) 71: ‘Is Hennessey the bull artist?’ said Danny O’Neill.
[Aus]D. Stivens Jimmy Brockett 20: ‘I saw no-one under seventy the whole time I was getting fitted for my ten suits.’ ‘You said six last time,’ Jack said. ‘You bull artist.’.
[NZ]G. Slatter Gun in My Hand 210: That bull artist. Fancy wanting to marry a bastard like that.
[Aus]A. Buzo Rooted III i: What a lot of bull-artists. Bloody scientists.
[NZ]McGill Dict. of Kiwi Sl. 22/2: bull artist boaster and/or charlatan; eg ‘Don’t believe a word he says. That joker’s a bull artist from way back.’.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. [as cit. 1988].
bull con (n.) [con n.1 (7)]

(US) specious, deceitful talk; thus v. to deceive.

[US]Ade Artie (1963) 26: It takes better people than you to sling the bull con into me.
[US]Guthrie Dly Leader (OK) 24 Oct. 2/1: The colored man’s eye is opened, and he cannot be bull-conned any longer by lily whites.
[US]Number 1500 Life In Sing Sing 259: He gave them a bull con and they turned him out. He told a plausible story and they discharged him.
[US]Blue-Grass Blade (Lexington, KY) 28 June 6/1: he told the congregational preachers [...] ‘You are continually springing bum bull-con to your congregation’.
[US]A. Stringer Door of Dread 84: Yuh gimme a pain in the neck! Whaddayuh take me for, anyway? Yuh save that bull-con for the gorilla-guy who’s butlerin’ for this hang-out!
[US]G. Henderson Keys to Crookdom 399: Bull con. Clever lies. [Ibid.] 402: One who tells loud and unconvincing tales [...] bull con artist.
[US]W. Smith Bessie Cotter 212: Don’t try your bull-con on me.
[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).
bullcorn (n.) [euph. for bullshit n./bull con ]

(Aus. / US) nonsense, rubbish; also used as excl.

[Aus]Gippsland Times (Vic.) 1 Oct. 4/1: You’ ve bunked the German nation / With bull-corn as a ration.
Amarillo Globe-Times (TX) 1 Sept. 16/1: Cole slammed his fist against the desk and shouted ‘bullcorn’.
Arizona Dly Star 9 Dec. Football Extra 2/2: The closest he comes to using foul language is when he says ‘bullcorn’.
[US]L.A. Times 16 Oct. II 5/3: Lindsay denounced the measure as ‘screwball,’ ‘nuts,’ and ‘bullcorn’.
[US]W. Coleman in Geronimo 2:6 June [Internet] Bull! Bull! Having money is not synonymous with having power in this country given the nature of racism. That’s bullcorn!
Turtle Island Creations [Internet] Try having your pendulum out and in motion at a party or other gathering to gauge the ‘bullcorn level’ as you tune into one conversation, then another. You will find the pendulum agreeing or disagreeing with what is being said. Sort of like a ‘bullcorn detector’.
[US]Arizona Dly Star (Tucson, AZ) 7 June A009/3: He would have discovered that the hauling data was not bullcorn.
bullcrap (n.) [crap n.1 (4)]

any form of specious talk, nonsense, rubbish, lies, flattery; also as a dismissive excl.

Hal Ellson Golden Spike 22: Don’t give me that bull-crap.
[US]T. Southern ‘Red-dirt Marijuana’ in Southern (1973) 20: They’s a whole lotta ole bull-crap go on in the world.
[US]K. Brasselle Cannibals 64: ‘It’s easier when you’re a good teacher—’ ‘Bullcrap.’.
[US]B. Seale Seize the Time 37: Hollering cuss words and bull crap.
[US]LaBarge & Holt Sweetwater Gunslinger 201 (1990) 160: ‘Bullcrap,’ said Sundance.
[UK]D. Poyer Med 150: Bullcrap, Kelly.
[US]W. Shaw Westsiders 310: We have no more excuses! It’s all bullcrap.
[UK]G. Iles Turning Angel 213: ‘Bullcrap!’ Sims bellows. ‘That’s just bullcrap.’.
Twitter 21 Nov. [Internet] Don’t start with any of this ‘Happy Holidays’ bullcrap. It’s the Christmas season. It's ‘Merry Christmas’.
bull dinky (n.) (also bull dickey) [dicky n.5 /dingus n. (2)]

(US) any form of specious talk, nonsense, rubbish, lies, flattery.

(con. WWII) W. Herber Tomorrow to Live 38: It seems like a lot of bull dickey Lieutenant.
Morn. Herald (Hagerstown, MD) 23 Nov. 3/3: ‘Bull dinky,’ I shouted as i slammed the receiver down.
Courier-Post (Camden, NJ) 17 July 13/1: I know you think that columnists shouldn’t take vacations [...] Bull dinky. I’m outta here.
Atlantic Online June [Internet] Cadets at West Point called voluble talk B.S. as early as 1900 – evidently a transparent abbreviation even then. A more recent euphemism is bull hockey, which has nothing to do with sports; newer still are bull puckey and the mysterious bull dinky.
[US]The Flick Philosopher 13 July [Internet] [A] stupid Hollywood movie that will gussy the military up and splatter it with a lot of politically correct bull dinky.
www.forwardgarden.com [Internet] Unfortunately, most people are 100% full of (bull dinky).
Asheville Citizen-Times (NC) 29 Jan. A2/4: I should’ve recognised the deployment story for the load of bull dinky it was.
bulldust (n.)

see separate entry.

bullfeathers (n.) [SE feathers, on pattern of horsefeathers n.; note ads for Washington hamburger grill Bullfeathers ‘When Teddy Roosevelt was hungry, he’d grumble, “Oh, bullfeathers”’]

(US) rubbish, nonsense, also as excl.

Statesman Jrnl (Salem, OR) 27 Aug. 13/4: Is he really glad, or is the hackneyed old custom only a lot of bull feathers?
Courier-Jrnl (Louisville, KY) 17 Apr. 42/1: ‘Don’t touch little Johnny [...] you may warp his personality if you strike him.’ Bull feathers! Whnt a lot of these young whelps needed then was a spanking.
Terre Haute Star (IN) 13 Jan. 17/2: You will surely hear someone who comes up with the sickeningly [sic] tripe about ‘Maude’ bring a puppet in an intricate [...] Conspiracy. Bull feathers.
Arkansas Gazette 11 Mar. 1/3: We made up our mind to say hush the way Miss Ina did. But [...] it always came ‘You’re kidding?’ or ‘No jive?’ or in really incredulous situations, ‘Bullfeathers!’.
C.W. Moore in Barquentine Ventures Online Journal [Internet] That was bullfeathers then and it’s bullfeathers now. If you give in to bullies and thugs, you just encourage more bullying and thuggery. I would have thought that lesson had been learned all too well 60 years ago.
[US] (ref. to 1900s) ‘Washington D.C. Vistors Guide’ at Wash. Post [Internet] [review of Bullfeathers Bar] According to bar lore, ‘bullfeathers’ was President Teddy Roosevelt’s favorite euphemism for another, better-known bull byproduct.
Hartford Courant (CT) 28 Oct. C4/4: ‘I sometimes thought Diaco was full of bull feathers last year’.
bull hockey (n.) [hockie n. (2)]

(US) any form of specious talk, lies, flattery, insincerity, nonsense etc.

[US]Face of War [documentary film] ‘He keeps claiming he’s a farmer.’ ‘Bull hockey.’ [HDAS].
Ft Lauderdale News (FL) 27 Apr. 51/4: And in the midst of all the bull hockey, there was Ron Maree, round-faced and happy.
Disptach (Moline, IL) 2 Mar. E8/1: They say employment is down. I say bull hockey.
[US]theStranger.com 25 Feb.–3 Mar. [Internet] Let me tell you something, Rev. Falwell! [...] I think your theory of the Antichrist being Jewish is bull hockey!
G.L. Rowles on Dads Against the Divorce Industry [Internet] Well, from the ‘feeling’ feminist perspective dads may actually be harmful to the family enterprise by appropriating precious family resources for beer and cigarettes. Bull Hockey!
Courier-Jrnl (Louisville, KY) 29 June A17/4: But that doesn’t mean that we are going to help sling the governor’s bull hockey at reporters covering his administration.
bull-jive

see separate entries.

bull-lobb (v.)

(US) to gossip or chatter inconsequentially.

[US]Nicholson & Robinson Sailor Beware! II ii: You boys still bull-lobbin’?
bull manure (n.)

see separate entry.

bull merchant (n.) [merchant n.]

(Aus./US) one who speaks insincerely.

Town Talk (Alexandria, LA) 11 Sept. 4/5: A big bull merchant was heard to say this morning that farmers should hold their cotton for 12 cents.
[US]J. Lait Gus the Bus 28: Take this back to that spindle-pinned bull merchant.
[Aus]Referee (Sydney) 28 June 5/3: They say molasses catches more flies than vinegar. It does. They say the bird with the smiling face has more friends than the sour-visaged egg. He has. But the guy who peddles the bull has more followers than all. [...] They fall towards the bull merchant the way a tree leans towards the sun.
[Aus]Northern Standard (Darwin, NT) 8 Mar. 4/2: [W]hen Dr. Cook and the nurse allow a person of his class, teamed up with the old bull merchant, to bolster up their case, they must be in a pretty bad way.
[Aus]D. Niland Shiralee 19: Thinking of that old quack, that old black bull-merchant.
bull muffin (n.) [meadow muffin n.]

(US) specious talk, nonsense, rubbish, insincerity.

[US]Bret Maverick [NBC-TV] You’re really gonna eat this bull muffin, aren’t you? [HDAS].
[US]Night Court [NBC-TV] ‘It sounded like a lot of . . .’ ‘Bull muffin!’ [HDAS].
bull pucky (n.) (also bull puckey) [puckey n.]

(US) any form of specious talk, insincerity, flattery, lies.

[Morn. Herald Hagerstown, MD) 2 June c-9/1: [advert] buffalo chips / bull pucky’s / They burn, So Do / Monthly Rents].
[Wild Angels [movie cast list] Joint: Lou Procopio. Bull Puckey: Coby Denton. Frankenstein: Marc Cavell].
[US]Atlantic vol 226 56: ‘I think Bonanza is a bunch of bull-pucky. Now if you want authentic stuff you ought to watch Gunsmoke’.
letter in Fairbanks Dly News-Miner (AK) 18 Apr. 4/5: We should not accept the bull pucky spewed out by our [...] governmental ‘leaders’.
[US]Tustin News (CA) 10 Apr. 2/1: His detractors say he is ‘only concerned with money’ to which we say ‘bull pucky’.
Atlantic Online June [Internet] Cadets at West Point called voluble talk B.S. as early as 1900 – evidently a transparent abbreviation even then. A more recent euphemism is bull hockey, which has nothing to do with sports; newer still are bull puckey and the mysterious bull dinky.
Net4TV [Internet] Net4TV is run by a tough, old broad. We’re funny and smart. We don’t take bull pucky from anybody. We don’t tolerate whining and sniveling.
[US]Mad mag. July 36: I didn’t want to come to Mexico in the first place. Bullpucky!
[US]Wash. Post 6 Mar. [Internet] ‘The national security justification for this whole ban — this setting up of extreme vetting — is bull-pucky,’ Maddow said.
bull roar (n.)

(US) any form of specious talk, insincerity, flattery, lies.

Tennesean (Nashville, TN) 25 Mar. 10F/7: ‘Let’s flush this new fangled corporate image bullroar and get back to good old belly-to-counter selling’.
[US]J. Stanley World War III (1979) 234: They were gentlemen who thought they could fight a war like some kind of traditional duel [...] that kind of bullroar.
Statesman Jrnl (Salem, OR) 15 Jan. 8/2: Cheerleading the uproar and bullroar is the National Review, a conservative magazine.
[US]Quad-City Times (Davenport, IA) 5 Sept. 3T/1: Some thought [the dictionary] elitist and exclusionary. Bullroar. Kids these days need all the help they can get.
Daily Howler 21 June [Internet] Why is such high-level bullroar permitted, without a peep of critical comment?
K. de Coster at LewRockwell.com [Internet] Looking at the FTC’s Consumer Protection website, one can find an abundance of ‘consumer education’ bullroar [...] Apparently, we’re all a bunch of imbeciles who bequeath to Big Government our ability to obtain and manage product information.
[US]letter in Argus-Leader (Sioux Falls, SD) 15 Dec. C2/4: This bullroar is South Dakota’s very own Groundhog Day.
bull scare (n.)

(US black) an aggressive, menacing manner that is no more than a bluff.

[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Pimp 129: He’s ninety per cent ‘Bull scare’.
[US]Big L ‘Ebonics’ [lyrics] To clean is to buff, a bull scare is a strong bluff.
bull session (n.)

see separate entry.

bullshit/bullshitter/bullshitty

see separate entries.

bull shooter (n.)

(US) a braggart, a liar.

Marion Times-Standard (AL) 26 Dec. 3/2: The British soldiers were big bull shooters (they like to brag).
[US](con. 1918) J. Stevens Mattock 285: Boy, bull-shooter is right. Would you believe anything that old stiff told you?
[US]J.L. Kuethe ‘Johns Hopkins Jargon’ in AS VII:5 330: bull-shooter—one who talks much and says little; one who talks nonsense.
Anniston Star (AL) 25 July 8/7: Competitions will be held this week for the [...] biggest woman-killer and biggest ‘bull shooter’.
[US]Abilene Reporter-News (TX) 5 Aug. D1/2: Even bull shooters like AP’s Harold Ratliff listen instead of talk when Howard’s around .
Asheville Citizen-Times (NC) 15 Mar. B1/8: Duke’s first half offensive show moved radio announcer Bill Curry to lay his professional reputation as a bull shooter on the line that ‘this game is all over’.
Dly Notes (Canonsburg, PA) 29 Nov. 4/2: In the war days, bull shooters swapping tall tales referred to a really far-out yarn as cluttering up the premise.
bullskate (v.) [bullshit v. + skate v.1 ]

(US black) to boast, to brag.

[US]Z.N. Hurston ‘Story in Harlem Sl.’ in Novels and Stories (1995) 1002: Jelly figured that if he bullskated just right, he might confidence Sweet Back out of a thousand on a plate.
[US]H. Simmons Corner Boy 11: I’ve been bull-skating for years with his guy.
[UK]Taunton Courier 23 July 3/6: American slang [...] A niff-naws or a hair-bag. The moll-buzzers bullskate and the mayvins yentz.
[US](con. 1950s) H. Simmons Man Walking On Eggshells 221: You ever known me to bullskate you about your playing?
bull slinger (n.)

(US) a braggart, a liar.

[US]Day Book (Chicago) 14 Aug. 1/2: Now if Coffin was outside the city hall, not holding down a fat political job, everybody would say this was the talk of a bullslinger.
Eve. Sentinel (Carlisle, PA) 2 July 1/6: ‘Well, I’m, not a paid bull-slinger and I leave blabbering to them’.
[US]M. Bodenheim Naked on Roller Skates 224: A handsome bullslinger with loads of nerve needed more than that.
[US]W.F. Whyte Street Corner Society (1955) 50: He’s a bull-slinger.
[US]Akron Beacon Jrnl (OH) 20 Feb. 7/1: Barnett won the Phi Delts’annual trophy of a man slingin gthe bull by telling the best story at his fraternity [and] doesn’t seem to mind being kidded about being a ‘champion bullslinger’.
Albany Democrat-Herald (OR) 26 Nov. 2/3: The Bullslinger award for publicity.
Republic (Columbus, IN) 20 Mar. B$/2: [Jimmy] Carter was adescribed [...] as ‘a builder not a bull slinger’.
[US]H. Kahane Logic and Contemp. Rhetoric (5th edn) 15: Lots of otherwise fine friends are congenital bull slingers.
Bangor (ME) Daily News 23 Apr. n.p.: Rommel Nobay fibbed a bit to get into Princeton University, claiming he is part black (nope), a National Merit Scholar (not even close) and that a family of lepers donated half their beggings to support his educational dream (hello?). When asked by prospective medical schools for grade transcripts, Princeton went a step further and filled them in on Nobay’s background as a bullslinger.
Wake Forest University [Internet] You’d go and check all this out with Brian and he’d say ‘Well . . .’ and just smile a lot. Bill Salter wasn’t the only bullslinger at Wake.
bullstuff (n.) [euph. for bullshit n.]

(US) nonsense.

Dly World (Opelousas, LA) 24 Apr. 4/6: We must cut the bullstuff. Really, we must.
Jrnl & Courier (Lafayette, IN) 28 June 35/5: ‘‘That retirement story was a bunch of bullstuff,’ he approximately said.
[US]‘Joe Bob Briggs’ Joe Bob Goes to the Drive-In 6: I might need to point out right here I’m not making any of this bullstuff up.
[US]Times (Shreveport, LA) 12 Apr. 5B/3: That just shoes to go how fast a formerly honest reporter can start spouting bullstuff.
Herald & Rev. (Decatur, IL) 7 Feb. B3/1: A fight that left the crowd [...] chanting an even more apt ‘Bull-stuff, bull-stuff’.
Dly Jrnl (Vineland, NJ) 12 Sept. A17/4: he has denied a motion for pre-trial intervention in this bull(stuff) case.
bull thrower (n.)

(US) a braggart, a liar.

[US] in F.O. Braynard World’s Greatest Ship (1972) I 176: A member of this ship’s company, has distinguished himself in the art of stringing the newspaper reporters, and it is believed that he should be awarded some sort of medal [...] It is suggested that there be engraved on the face of this medal, ‘Champion Bull Thrower’.
[US]Wood & Goddard Dict. Amer. Sl. 9: bull. Nonsense, exaggerated lies. Hence, bull-thrower, toreador, etc.
[US]D. Fuchs Low Company 292: You told me bull stories. You’re a bull-thrower, that’s all you are.
[US]Mad mag. May–June 25: A hot-blooded woman scorns the true love of a soldier for the deft maneuvers of a famous bull-thrower.
[US](con. 1970s) J. Pistone Donnie Brasco (2006) 39: He was a good bull-thrower [...] and could really handle himself.
bullwash (n.) [? bushwa n.]

(US) any form of specious talk, lies, nonsense, insincerity.

Ft Wayne Sentinel (IN) 26 Dec. 7/3: I certainly sympathize with these fellows if they are foolish enough to be satisfied with this ‘bull-wash’.
letter in Dly Tar Heel (Chapel Hill, NC) 29 Sept. 2/3: Hardly evere [...] does the editor permit such infamous misrepresentation and unjust bull-wash to appear.
letter in Minneapolis Star (MN) 21 Jan. 6/5: I see that you jerks and frauds are at it again. I refer to that ludicrous bullwash about Minnesota’s [...] winter.
Courier-Jrnl (Lousiville, KY) 14 Aug. 4/1: ‘I’m tired of this old bullwash,’ declared Helen Dixon.
Philadelphia Inqurier (PA) 24 June 3-B/1: Alfred Seavey [...] said that the charges against Theodoropoulos were ‘bullwash’.
[US]Honolulu Star-Bulletin (HI) 16 Nov. A-12/3: The measure, she said, ‘demonstrates [...] that the Council is sytadfast in its opposition to international terrorism.’ That is bullwash.
Missoulian (MT) 24 Nov. E4/1: Given the amount of bullwash Cine-Man was given for alloting four stars to ‘Legend of the Drunken Master’ [etc].
[US]letter in L.A. Times 31 Mar. A14/3: Voters in other Western states aren’t listening to the media bullwash.

In phrases

bung on the bull (v.)

(Aus.) to show off, to act in a pretentious manner.

[Aus]A. Buzo Rooted IIi i: You’ve got your head screwed on the right way. You don’t bung on the bull like a lot of these blokes you see around the place.
line of bull (n.)

purportedly persuasive nonsense.

Montana Standard (Butte, MT) 5 Nov. 2/4: When Tim opens the air valve and starts the fan going his line of bull would make a hurricane look like a gentle zephyr.
[US]Mansfield News (OH) 7 Dec. 10?/ 3: A publicity gang which will have the job of throwing this line of bull into every state in the union.
[US]E. O’Neill The Web in Ten ‘Lost’ Plays (1995) 53: Aw, shut up! Yuh make me sick with dat line of bull.
Florala News (AL) 23 Aug. 2/4: ‘[T]hat was just a big line of bull written by a wind-bag’.
[US]letter in Arizona Republic (Phoenix, AZ) 9 Oct. sect. 2 2/3: I notice the same old line of bull being peddled out from your city again.
[US]E. O’Neill Iceman Cometh Act II: Aw, forget dat bughouse line of bull.
Hattiesburg American (MS) 29 June 12/3: We are not just feeding you a line of bull to get you to buy stock, folks.
[US]B. Jackson Get Your Ass in the Water (1974) 106: When I first met you, sweet papa, you tried to shoot me a line a bull.
[Aus]D. Ireland Burn 57: He’s got a sweet line o’ bull as ever I seen.
News-Press (Ft Myers, FL) 4 Jan. 7B/1: ‘I just fed them a line of bull and told them to come get their money’.
Sth Floirida Sun-Sentinel (Ft Lauderdale, FL) 11 Dec. E1/1: But even if you buy that line of bull, the use by a judge of the word ‘homo’ [...] doesn’t exactly point at impartiality, does it?
Reno Gaz.-Jrnl (NV) 7 Oct. Headliners 6/4: He presents himself as a smooth-talking lounge lizard with a line of bull that exposes him as an outrageous degenerate.
[US]Chicago Trib. 26 Nov. 1-10/6: ‘I think (Foxconn and local officials) are feeding us a line of bull’.
pull bull (v.) [fig. use of sense 1; i.e. their illicit service is ‘nonsense’]

(W.I.) to run an illegal, unlicensed taxi service, to use one’s own car as an unlicensed taxi.

[WI]cited in Allsopp Dict. Carib. Eng. Usage (1996).
put the bull on (v.) [the animal’s characteristics]

(US) to pressurize, to act aggressively towards.

[US]J. Breslin World of Jimmy Breslin (1968) 9: He’s yellow. Put the bull on these tough guys and they all bend in half.
shoot the bull (v.) (also peddle the bull, spin the bull)

to gossip, to chat; to talk deliberately deceptive nonsense.

[US]F. Hutchison Philosophy of Johnny the Gent 79: ‘[H]e shot the bull into some o’ them politicians [...] an’ they fixed it fer him to blow the harness an go out scoutin’ fer guns’.
[US]B. Fisher A. Mutt in Blackbeard Compilation (1977) 52: He said: ‘Certainly I will assist attorney Beerhall in peddling the bull to the jury.’.
[US]O.O. McIntyre New York Day by Day 18 June [synd. col.] Some of the pet ideas [for songs] have as their titles: ‘Shooting the Bull Around the Bulletin Board’ [etc].
[US]O.O. McIntyre New York Day By Day 11 Oct. [synd. col.] [T.A. Dorgan’s] column starts of each day with a famous saying phrased in slang. Thus : As Marc Anthony would have said it today: ‘I come to plant Caesar, not to peddle the bull’.
[UK]A.G. Empey Over the Top ‘Tommy’s Dict. of the Trenches’ 293: ‘Gassing.’ A term Tommy applies to ‘shooting the bull’.
[US]W.M. Barr letter www.sheilascorner.com/war/dads.shtml [Internet] The Yanks sure do like to shoot the Bull about the U.S. to these French people as soon as they can make themsleves [sic] understood. There are some mighty funny ones take place when a Yank forgets the Frenchy can’t understand.
[US]E. Dahlberg Bottom Dogs 75: A pal of his ran in and told him Mush Tate was shootin’ the bull and heavy too.
[US] ‘Toledo Slim’ in Irwin Amer. Tramp and Und. Sl. 229: We chewed the rag for quite a while, and I shot the bull for fair.
[US]J.L. Kuethe ‘Johns Hopkins Jargon’ in AS VII:5 336: to shoot the bull—to talk nonsense.
[US]C.R. Bond 16 Mar. in A Flying Tiger’s Diary (1984) 128: Sat around shooting the bull with the Second Squadron pilots.
[US]Kerouac letter 20 Mar. in Charters I (1995) 10 5: Hang around, spin the bull, eat, sleep, swim.
[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).
[US]J.D. Salinger Catcher in the Rye (1958) 17: I shot the bull for a while. I told him I was a real moron, and all that stuff.
[US]H. Simmons Corner Boy 212: Out in the sunlight [...] shooting the bull with the fellows.
[US]F. Kohner Affairs of Gidget 62: He won’t ask questions, so I won’t shoot him the bull.
[US]C. Himes Blind Man with a Pistol (1971) 36: They let the fez-headed man get out of sight while they shot the bull.
[US](con. 1960s) D. Goines Black Gangster (1991) 10: Prince walked beside Red, shooting the bull.
[UK]Sun. Times Mag. 11 Sept. 51: We were sitting there drinking a Coke, shooting the bull.
[UK]P. Theroux Picture Palace 140: I wonder what folks like that do on vacation. Probably tear open a six-pack and shoot the bull.
[US]Eble Campus Sl. Oct. 6: shoot the bull – talk for prolonged periods with friends.
[US]H. Rawson Dict. of Invective (1991) 353: shoot the shit, to. To gossip; especially, to lie or to talk nonsense; also to shoot the crap (or the bull).
[US]F. Kellerman Stalker (2001) 40: Every time we start shooting the bull, talking about the day, you say things like, ‘Yeah, my father once had a case like that’.
sling the bull (v.)

(US) to talk nonsense, to chatter about trivialities; thus bullslinging n.

[US]Ade Artie (1963) 26: It takes better people than you to sling the bull con into me.
[US]G. Henderson Keys to Crookdom 418: Sling the bull – to tell clever lies.
[Aus]Smith’s Wkly (Sydney) 20 Aug. 11/2: Eventually the model ‘S.M. Herald’ leader will read like this [...] Square ’n all e’s an ’umdinger when it comes to slingin’ the bull.
[US]L.A. Times 16 Feb. 14/1: It’s great to be an editor, / To sit up late at night, / To scratch your wool / And sling the bull [etc].
[US] ‘Whitman College Sl.’ in AS XVIII:2 Apr. 154/2: sling the bull, bull, bull session. Closely related terms [...] heated discussion.
[UK]Oakland Trib. (CA) 7 Oct. A-33: [headline] Navy League Asserts Air Force ‘Slings the Bull’ About Matador.
[US]E. Shepard Doom Pussy 57: The new friend was in for an exhausting marathon of bull slinging. Nails could sling it with the best of them.
[US]L.A. Times 15 Feb. Letters 4/4: The erudite William F. Buckley Jor. who can sling the bull with grammatically meticulous verbal dexterity.
Arizona Republic 17 Feb. F7/2: He’s ‘never known Jim Brock to tell an outright lie, but he can sling the bull with the best of them’.
Courier-Post (Camden, NJ) 22 Oct. 5T/4: Brandon is willing to take any dare and knws how to sling the bull with the guys.
Arizona Republic 15 Sept. B5/1: So what can you do at a Meetup? ‘Chat, chew the fat, shoot the breeze, sling the bull, babble, cackle, gab, yammer. No big whoop,’ according to the Web site.
spread the bull (v.)

to talk boastfully, if inaccurately, of one’s prowess.

[US](con. 1910s) J.T. Farrell Young Lonigan in Studs Lonigan (1936) 67: Damn it, he couldn’t spread the bull on thick; he didn’t know how to string people along.
[US](con. 1920s) J.T. Farrell Judgement Day in Studs Lonigan (1936) 466: Now he was trying to spread out the bull and act like he had been a big shot.
tie that bull outside (also tie the animal outside)

(US) as an imper. phr., stop talking nonsense.

[US]Dos Passos Three Soldiers 44: A little man lying in one of the upper bunks had spoken suddenly [...] ‘That goddam kike Eisenstein,’ muttered someone. ‘Say, tie that bull outside,’ shouted Bill Grey good-naturedly.
[US]Dos Passos Manhattan Transfer 161: You juss tie that bull outside, I said to him, then I resigned.
[US]M. Bodenheim Sixty Seconds 240: Go-o o-on, tie the animal outside.
[US]J. Conroy Disinherited 134: Tie that bull outside! That’s the kind of stuff that makes the grass grow green.
toss the bull around (v.) (also throw the bull around, toss the ox)

(US) to chatter, to gossip; to talk nonsense.

[US]G. Bronson-Howard Enemy to Society 211: I don’t throw any ‘bull’ around like some guys I know.
Dakota County Herald (NE) 4 Apr. 3/1: I’ll haze you for trying to throw the bull at Red Sauinders!
[US] ‘Whitman College Sl.’ in AS XVIII:2 Apr. 155/1: tossing the ox. Bragging or exaggerating the facts.
[US](con. 1920s) J. Thompson South of Heaven (1994) 44: I’ve been tossing the bull around.