fair to middling


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fair to middling

Neither good nor bad; mediocre; lukewarm. Despite reviews that were fair to middling, the film was a huge box-office success. A: "How was your time in France?" B: "Eh, fair to middling. I expected it to be a lot better, to be honest."
See also: fair

fair to middlin'

Rur. mediocre; not bad but not good. (Middling means 'of average quality.') Tom: How are you feeling today? Bill: Fair to middlin'. My sewing is excellent, but my cooking is only fair to middlin'.
See also: fair

fair to middling

Mediocre, pretty good, so-so, as in I asked them how they liked their new home and John answered, "Fair to middling. This phrase, often a reply to an inquiry about one's health, business, or the like, is redundant, since fair and middling both mean "moderately good." [Mid-1800s] Also see can't complain.
See also: fair
References in periodicals archive ?
John Ed Bradley was a fair to middling football player at the legendary football franchise known as Louisiana State University back in the glory days of the SEC, back in the 1970s.
Herself said her prawns were fair to middling but it was a decent-sized starter and set us up nicely for the next course.
Indeed, Artest appears to be overjoyed to have joined the defending NBA champion Lakers after many seasons toiling with fair to middling teams.
The final section takes a different and longer perspective with four essays on the writer's relation with the Livre d'Artiste, the variations between his French and English prose works (a most interesting essay by Mr Sam Slote), Beckett and electronic publishing, and the controversy surrounding the posthumous publication of Dream of Fair to Middling Women and Eleutheria.
Murphy argues that, contrary to prevailing critical opinion, Joyce's influence on Beckett extended well beyond early writing like Dream of Fair to Middling Women (written 1932) and Murphy (1938).
While the musical proficiency was beyond doubt the inclusion of covers and a distinct lack of fire or even evident enthusiasm made them appear like a fair to middling pub band.
Scathing in his criticism of Bollywood for the fair to middling movies that one of the world's largest centres of film production churns out, Shah says: "The Bombay film industry can recover and multiply ten times their investment by making a load of trash.