The Universe of Discourse

Thu, 16 Apr 2020

Dumpster fires

Today I learned that the oldest known metaphorical use of “dumpster fire” (to mean “a chaotic or disastrously mishandled situation”) is in reference to the movie Shrek the Third.

The OED's earliest citation is from a 2008 Usenet post, oddly in I looked in Google Book search for an earlier one, but everything I found was about literal dumpster fires.

I missed the movie, and now that I know it was the original Dumpster Fire, I feel lucky.

[ Addendum 20200417: More about this. ]

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