Tanka Lanka

Trini Phrase: Tanka Lanka

Tanka lanka! I goin’ to tell Miss what you say ’bout she husban’!

  • Tanka Lanka (phr) – Expression meaning “you’re going to get in trouble”, used by schoolchildren, usually accompanied by shaking of one hand.

Tanka Lanka – Caribbean Usage

The phrase Tanka Lanka is mainly used in Trinidad & Tobago. Children like to tease and teasing is done in many ways. However, when tanka lanka is used it is done to tease and inform the person in question that they are in dire straits – yes yuh in trouble friend. That good friend now becomes a serial teasing machine and won’t rest until the person cries to bring about the desired effect – satisfaction that yes, ah get yuh back. “Tanka lanka yuh will get ah good cut arse when yuh mother finds out is you who thief the milk and sugar”.

Trini Phrases

The various words and phrases from Trinidad & Tobago can be traced back to English, French and Spanish origins. Kicksing is one such word that has its roots in the English language. Growing up in Trinidad and Tobago is interesting because the slangs can change over time. I have lived in the United States for 20 years now, and every time I travel back to Trinidad and Tobago, I have to reacquaint myself with the words and phrases that have evolved.

Oral Traditions

Trini folklore such as Papa Bois is an oral tradition meant to pass on the stories to the next generation. Other Trini phrases in the vernacular are Bobol, Santimanitay, Obzocky, Mama De-Leau,

Click here now for other Trini expressions and leave us a comment below of phrases you have heard.

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