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pot luck

1. A situation or circumstance in which the outcome is uncertain but where one takes a chance in the hopes of achieving a fortunate or beneficial end result. (Used especially in the phrase "take pot luck.") I like to just take pot luck when I travel to new cities and try out whatever local establishments I happen upon. I love going into old antique stores. I know finding something worthwhile is just a bit of pot luck, but it's fun to see all the old things they have!
2. (More often "potluck.") A shared meal in which separate dishes are prepared and/or brought by different individuals; the food that is brought to such a meal. Primarily heard in US. Sarah and I are hosting a pot luck this Saturday, and you are both welcome to join us! Just bring something that we can all share! Potluck dinners are a great way for neighbors or groups of friends to spend time together or get to know each other better. We're just asking guests to bring a bit of pot-luck, nothing fancy!
See also: luck, pot

take potluck

Come to eat whatever happens to be served; also, take one's chances. For example, You're welcome to join us for supper but you'll have to take potluck, or When the flight was canceled, passengers had to take potluck on other airlines. This idiom alludes to accepting whatever happens to be in the cooking pot. [Second half of 1700s]
See also: potluck, take
References in periodicals archive ?
Potluck is certainly beautifully designed and very simple to use - the only remaining question is if people will stick with it, or drift back to the link sharing sites they already know and love.
Much like 19th-century barbecue, a potluck dinner is the ultimate social leveler, a glue of sorts, that brings people together from all walks and then sets them down at the same long table where they discover common ground.
CFGB is also in the process of organizing a potluck picnic for former CFGB study tour participants.
When someone had no dish for the potluck, he or she still ate.
The legislation Gronemus will be introducing defines a potluck to mean an event to which all of the following apply: 1) attendees of the event provide food and beverages to be shared with other attendees and consumed at the event; 2) no compensation is provided to any person who conducts or assists in providing the potluck event or who provides food and beverages shared, and no compensation is paid to any person for consumption of food or beverages; and 3) the event (potluck) is sponsored by a church, fraternal organization, youth, or patriotic organization or service club; civic organization; tavern; parent teacher organization; senior citizen center or organization; or adult day care center.
Established in 1989 by the Junior League of Little Rock and the Interfaith Task Council, Potluck provided more than a million meals to more thousands of hungry Arkansans last year.
From Potluck comes dinnerware and accessories that will update any casual table.
The week's events included a roller skating party, potluck luncheon, a formal luncheon sponsored by the dentists, a visit to Huffman Prairie Flying Field Interpretive Center and a presentation from Katherine Grinnell, Oregon Health Sciences University.
According to a recent national consumer survey* conducted by the American Dietetic Association and the ConAgra Foods Foundation, the majority of diners will participate in buffet-style (70 percent) or potluck (55 percent) gatherings this holiday season.
Other forms of the traditional welcome wagon that promote fellowship among the residents and ease the transition to a new home are get-to-know-your-neighbor parties and potluck dinners.
Thanksgiving in our family is a potluck affair, mainly because our gathering has become too big for one cook alone.
They were forced into this decision by a tragic potluck incident in North Carolina last year.
It is served at parish-council meetings, at Alcoholics Anonymous meetings in the church basement, at parish school board meetings, at bingo games, at the annual dance, the annual raffle, the annual welcoming-new-parishioners potluck.