squirrelly or squirrely


adjective: 1. Restless, jumpy, nervy. 2. Odd or crazy.


Why do we consider a squirrel squirrelly? Well, it's either their unpredictable running around or we think they are nutty because of their preference for nuts. The word came to us via French and Latin from Greek skiouros (shadow-tailed), from skia (shadow) + oura (tail). Ultimately from the Indo-European root ors- (buttocks) which also gave us ass, dodo, and cynosure. Earliest documented use: 1925.

"'It's indicative of how squirrelly the market is,' Christopher Dixo said, adding that investors are skittish about any degree of negative news."
Sallie Hofmeister; Diller's Internet Empire Takes a Hit; Los Angeles Times; Jan 7, 2003.


SQUIRELY - to act in a manor in the manner of a squire