The phrase "wolf ticket" is the result of a misunderstood African-American slang expression for the practice of verbal intimidation, "sellin' woof tickets," that was incorrectly transposed by whites. Over time, the corrupted nomenclature has become accepted terminology.
"Woofing," or "woofin'," like "signifyin'" and "talkin' trash," is part of the African-American oral tradition. The term is derived from the onomatopoeic expression of the sound of, for instance, a junkyard dog barking to ward off potential intruders.
"Sellin' woof tickets" is engaging in threatening or intimidating verbal aggression, usually without the intent of actually doing physical harm. In West African and African-American cultures, verbal sparring and physical displays traditionally were employed as proxies for physical violence to preserve life and maintain peace and order. Woofin' also can be a means of "calling someone out," of challenging an opponent to a verbal or physical match.
See also "playing the dozens."
A wolf ticket is also a counterfeit ticket or bogus entry pass to an event, like a rock concert or an athletic contest, sold by a scalper.
(My wording from Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia.)
"Man, Butterball's on the corner sellin' woof tickets. Let's go watch!"
Prices shown in USD.
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