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snafu (sna-FOO, SNA-foo) noun

A bad situation, especially one resulting from incompetence.


Marked by confusion; chaotic.

verb tr.

To throw into disorder or confusion.

[US military acronym from Situation Normal, All F**ked Up, also euphemistically, Situation Normal, All Fouled Up. Note: We've asterisked the F word here to make sure this newsletter doesn't get held by the nanny software.]

"But the Burger King snafu is potentially damaging, Cohen said." Scott Leith; Coke on Thin Ice With Burger King; The Monterey Herald (California); Jun 19, 2003.

"In a conference call, chief executive Steve Snyder said the snafu was `literally a cut-and-paste error in an Excel spreadsheet that we did not detect ...'" Drew Cullen; Excel Snafu Costs Firm $24m; The Register (UK), Jun 19, 2003.

This week's theme: abbreviations and acronyms.


The principal contributor to loneliness in this country is television. What happens is that the family 'gets together' alone. -Ashley Montagu, anthropologist and writer (1905-1999)

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