Let's talk about merkins (UK)

I just heard from a Londoner that he understood that in National Service military slang, the word “merkin” was a “bucket of shit with a crust on it”. I can’t find anything even remotely similar on the internets, so I turn to the teeming millions in the hopes that someone has seen it used in this sense.

(and why would someone keep shit in a bucket for long enough for it to form a crust?!)

And while we are at it, Googling around for merkins, I found that there is such a thing as Merkins Chocolate (!), but I can’t find exactly what it is. What is Merkins Chocolate?

Cecil’s column about merkins makes no mention of either chocolates or crusty turdbuckets

I’ve heard the rhyming slang ‘septic’ (septic tank) used to describe Americans, who are also sometimes known as 'merkins, and a septic tank is approximately equivalent to a crusty shit bucket - could it be that the person who told you all this was a bit mixed up, or drunk?

Although I have to say, that all seemed a lot less tenuous in my mind before I set it down in words.

indeed! :slight_smile:

Which is not to mean that I am excluding the possibility of alcohol influencing his story. The story, though, involves a man with the unfortunate surname of Merkins and the jokes that all the remaining office staff played on him by virtue of that meaning of the word. Luckily for the poor man, they were not aware of the other meaning of the word.

Is Merkins a common surname in England?

Wait, what does tank rhyme with?


I always thought a Merkin was a toupee for one’s nether regions… :slight_smile:

[sup]hey it’s just what I heard…[/sup]

No - I’ve never heard it appear as a surname - as a representative sample I just checked the Portsmouth phone book and it lists no Merkins at all, although there might be some that chose to be ex-directory. There are a few Merrikins’.

I just Googled “John Merkins” and got 28 hits. A very interesting life if you composite all the hits into a single biography. He was born healthy, camped 15 hours for a ball game and suffered a spinal injury. He has persevered in the face of tragedy twice. A truly inspirational life. And he is a Jr., so there is at least one more.

I heard that too - Cecil seems to agree. I’ve never heard the OP’s definition before now.

It all started with Cecil’s column, that linked me to wiki. I saw the bit about F1, which I found funny and posted on my F1 forum. Then a Londoner provided the anecdote about Mr Merkins being made fun of because of that other meaning. I just can’t find any references to it, so I was hoping the Dopers from over there could shed some light on it.

It could simply be that someone at that office had it wrong and convinced everybody of it. Not a bad office joke, I guess. Convince all your coworkers that your boss’ surname means something nasty elsewhere.

I hate Mr Smith. Did you know that in Papua a smith is what they call a manatee that is obsessed with smelling his own butt?

Here’s a Merkin (US) - Muffley, that is, the rather befuddled President from Dr. Strangelove (on the right): http://faculty.smu.edu/dsimon/A%20Film%20Course/strangelove2a.jpeg