Whacko! The language of exhilaration

I was reminded of the expression “Whacko!” recently while watching Showcase’s television production of Tim Winton’s classic Australian novel Cloudstreet.  Thought I would go for a little hunt to see where it might pop up.  It first appeared in newspapers in the 1930s, continued its popularity in the 1940s and was less in use in the 1950s and 60s.

Whacko – an expression of joy, approval, happiness, expectation

Sunday Times – 13 March 1949 and Courier Mail – 21 December 1948

The Examiner – 26 August 1941

Note : prior to the fall of Singapore in February 1942

Courier Mail – 5 June 1942  Note:  an important case to follow up?  And whacko!  Here’s a case of serendipity at work.  I just happened to attend this school.  I can’t imagine why this episode wasn’t mentioned in the annals.



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