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A.Word.A.Day--hangdog

Pronunciation RealAudio

hangdog (HANG-dog) adjective

1. Defeated; dejected

2. Shamefaced.

[From the notion that the said person deserved to be hanged like a dog. Yes, not too long ago, dogs were hanged for crimes, such as biting.]

"Outplacement experts offer these three pieces of advice to holiday job seekers. First, don't stand around the chip dip looking hangdog; someone with a positive self-image makes a much better impression on potential employers. Second, don't come right out and ask for a job; use the parties to arrange future meetings with friends or new acquaintances. Third, don't drink so much that you start crying in your suds." Karen Slater, Firm Touts a New Holiday Bonus: Pink Slips Right Before Christmas, The Wall Street Journal (New York), Nov 23, 1984.

This week's theme: words to describe people.

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Patriotism is often an arbitrary veneration of real estate above principles. -George Jean Nathan, author and editor (1882-1958)

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