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dicey

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dicey

Postby sardith » Mon Jun 20, 2011 3:36 pm

Hey Doc,

I was eavesdropping on a conversation amongst friends on a social media site, and one of them said that things in their life were, 'a little dicey,' and I'd like to know more about that word.

[Btw, it's not really eavesdropping, but I couldn't think of the appropriate word~help?] :?

Could you do a column on 'dicey', please.

Thanks,
Sardith :D
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dicey

Postby Audiendus » Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:10 am

sardith wrote:Btw, it's not really eavesdropping, but I couldn't think of the appropriate word~help?

Overhearing?

According to the Online Etymology Dictionary, dicey (risky or uncertain) alludes to the rolling of dice. It originated as 1940s aviators' jargon.
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Re: dicey

Postby Slava » Tue Jun 21, 2011 12:56 pm

Audiendus wrote:
sardith wrote:Btw, it's not really eavesdropping, but I couldn't think of the appropriate word~help?

Overhearing?

According to the Online Etymology Dictionary, dicey (risky or uncertain) alludes to the rolling of dice. It originated as 1940s aviators' jargon.
I saw that, too, but didn't see how it was used in flying. Why would it originate there, and not in dice games?

As to the other part, I was thinking "spying." Harsh, though.
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dicey

Postby sardith » Tue Jun 21, 2011 1:14 pm

How about, 'Overseeing', Audiendus. 8)

Or, speyeing...naw. :oops:

How 'bout being invited to a partyleyene...like when I was first married we shared the phone with 4 other families...NO privacy! :P


And the aviators...

I saw that too, Slava, and wondered how the aviators played into the whole story. :?

Sardith :)
“The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.”
~Mark Twain, [pen name for Samuel Clemens], American author and humorist, (1835-1910)~
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dicey

Postby Audiendus » Tue Jun 21, 2011 5:48 pm

Slava wrote:I saw that, too, but didn't see how it was used in flying. Why would it originate there, and not in dice games?

Well, flying in World War II was a risky business. And how would one use 'dicey' in a dice game? Isn't the word essentially figurative?

sardith wrote:How about, 'Overseeing', Audiendus.

Possibly, although it usually means 'supervising'. ('Overhearing' is not ideal, but we do talk about 'hearing' from someone when they write to us.)
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Postby Slava » Tue Jun 21, 2011 6:44 pm

How's about the neutral "observed"? Or even simply "saw, " as long as we're talking about text.
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dicey

Postby sardith » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:23 am

I like the word 'observed' the best. 8)
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Wed Jun 22, 2011 4:23 pm

Observed works for me too.
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Mon Jul 11, 2011 5:33 pm

Dicey has always seemed to me to have the risky meaning skewed toward failing. Combat pilots get into dicey situations where they may be shot down. Spies find it a bit dicey when their cover may get blown. I'm not positive it's always spelled with the e. Haven't you encounted dicy?
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Mon Jul 11, 2011 9:47 pm

Dicy? no. But Dicey always seems to me to be somewhat
askew: like spies, CIA, MI1, Bourne Supremacy types.
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Tue Jul 12, 2011 10:41 am

I've also heard it in less serious situations:"Shh, this next card in my house of cards is a bit dicey to install."
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Jul 12, 2011 1:43 pm

Yes, Precarious, that would fit. Taking skill, expertise.
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