One of the very distinct characteristics of bingo games is the use of bingo number nicknames. They add fun to any bingo proceedings, although, truth be told, they are not exactly the most necessary thing to know.

For one, even if you know nothing about these nicknames, you will still see the numbers called on the screen. And the callers still call the numbers as is, vis a vis the number nickname. Still, it cannot be denied that these nicknames add some spice and some flavor to a card game that may seem to get monotonous after a while. Even in online bingo, many programs and websites still use these bingo number nicknames. It’s as if these nicknames are now tradition. No bingo game is without these nicknames.These bingo nicknames are often dictated by culture and location.

While some of the bingo numbes remain the same in America and Europe, some other countries use other bingo number nicknames according to what their culture and history dictate. For instance, one of the universal bingo number nicknames for the number one is Kelly’s eyes. This name is after Ned Kelly, a popular Australian gangster who is believed to only have one eye. While Ned Kelly may be popular in the United Kingdom and Australia and is known in America, Ned Kelly is probably not a familiar figure in Asian countries, where bingo is also played. Likewise, these countries have their own pop culture histories, which often dictate bingo number nicknames. However, some of the bingo number nicknames used in America and the United Kingdom are indeed universal and are the ones used in online bingo games.

Bingo number nicknames are usually classified into two: by sense and by rhyme. Nicknames in the first category are often references to popular historical figures and events, pop culture tidbits, and specific cultural items. Those classified by rhyme is simply that-the nickname rhymes with the number being called. Then there are numbers that simply, directly pertain to the number (for instance, “unlucky for some” is a nickname for 13; this proves that bingo nicknames are often culturally-based because 13 is not unlucky for Japanese and Chinese people, for instance).

A popular example of a general bingo nickname for 16 is “never been kissed,” for obvious reasons. This is a general nickname because the “sweet sixteen” perception is true elsewhere. Some nicknames, on the other hand, combine sense and rhyme. Gandhi’s breakfast is the nickname for the number 80 (obviously a call done only in the non-US bingo games). This is a reference to Gandhi’s food abstinence because, some say, 80 rhymes with ate (8) and zero means nothing-therefore, he ate nothing. As for nicknames according to rhyme, heaven’s gate is an example – heaven’s gate rhymes with 78. Others pertain to the shape of the number.

One of the advantages of knowing these nicknames is that a player gets to declare “bingo” even before the number is even called through determining it through the nickname. Obviously, this is an advantage that more veteran players have against new bingo players.


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