Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Slang An old person, especially an eccentric old man.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A male person.
  • n. An old person, usually a male.
  • n. A device for boiling water for such domestic uses as heating or washing; a boiler. The normal spelling is water geyser.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A queer old fellow; an old chap; sometimes, an old woman.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a man who is (usually) old and/or eccentric

Etymologies

Probably alteration of dialectal guiser, masquerader, from Middle English gysar, from gysen, to dress, from gyse, guise, fashion; see guise.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

Comments

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  • Usage here.

    June 19, 2009

  • *determined not to have mollusque spot me driving around Philadelphia*

    April 17, 2009

  • Right, John. That's the general sense in BrE (note that this is a word strongly associated with the south of England). Or from It's too Late, off the same record (upon which Skinner has singularly failed to improve, although the 2nd album was very good in parts):

    "Mate bells me to borrow money; I got two Henrys and a dealer to pay /
    Call upon geezers to rid these green trees of my reeking jeans (?) /
    Got a you-think-I-care air, outglaring geezers' stares".

    April 16, 2009

  • Mike Skinner, aka "The Streets," who is awesome, mentions geezers in every third song. He uses the term in the yarbian sense, generally talking about un- or under-employed British guys in their 20s, whose major activities include smoking dope and playing Grand Theft Auto. From "Geezers Need Excitement:"

    Geezers need excitement.
    If their lives don't provide them this,
    they incite violence.
    Common sense, simple common sense

    April 16, 2009

  • I take umbrage. It is informal, pejorative, and slightly comical. I take umbrage, I say! Shall we, as they say, throw down?!

    *is not really interested in throwing down with ptero or anyone else but is at a loss for what else to say to liven up a stupid day*

    April 16, 2009

  • I'll add my vote to the growing North American consensus -- here in upstate New York, "Geezer" refers to someone who's really, really old. The word is informal, comical, and slightly pejorative.

    April 16, 2009

  • Rolig has nailed it. In the U.S. there is definitely a negative connotation; it isn't a neutral thing, such as "bloke." A geezer is always old, I can't think of an instance where it's applied to a female, and he's generally negative (e.g. Michael Douglas). There is often a comical aspect to its usage.

    April 15, 2009

  • I like to shorten geezer to geez. Seems friendlier.
    "The gas pedal is on the RIGHT, geez."

    April 15, 2009

  • The geezers here (Ontario) do all that mollusque said whilst wearing Fedoras. If you see a car with the turn signal left on, chances are the old coot is wearing a hat.

    April 15, 2009

  • Around here (Philadelphia area), geezers are old and male. They drive under the speed limit, hitch their pants up above the navel, and are less likely than codgers to be feisty.

    April 15, 2009

  • I think geezers are generally "old", so that the term has slightly age-ist* connotations, but that it is otherwise neutral. There may even be a somewhat positive overtone of feistiness.

    Now codger. That's a different kettle of fish entirely.

    *: Yes, I hate this term as much as you probably do, but it seemed like the most economical option, given the context.

    April 15, 2009

  • In the US, I think this word always refers to an old man, not just any man, and underscores this person's unattractiveness because of his age: How could a babe like Catherine Zeta-Jones marry a geezer like Michael Douglas?

    But I have been out of the US for a number of years and watch a lot of British TV, so I'm never 100% about the more subtle cross-pond (transpond?) distinctions.

    April 15, 2009

  • Cannot speak for the US, yarb, but as an eccentric old geezer myself, I generally concur. Only generally, though, for I am also a good geezer. Signed gangerh, aka geezerh.

    April 15, 2009

  • See comments on mesonoxian. To me this word doesn't in itself connote old age or eccentricity (although it's very often modified by dodgy or old), but is more or less a synonym of bloke, except with a slight imputation of seediness (you wouldn't call someone "a good geezer", but you might use it neutrally, e.g. "who's that geezer?").

    Is this a US/UK difference? I had assumed this word was peculiar to BrE, but apparently not. Is it widespread in the US? I've never heard it used on this side of the Atlantic.

    April 15, 2009