nobody


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

a nobody

Someone who is entirely unimportant, unsuccessful, or without power or influence. He's a nobody at the office; no one even knows he exists.
See also: nobody

it's an ill wind that blows nobody any good

Even the most negative or harmful situations usually benefit someone. Thus a situation that benefits no one must be truly bad (and rare). The rain caused flooding, but it may help the farmers. It's an ill wind that blows nobody any good.
See also: any, blow, good, ill, nobody, that, wind

on the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

A phrase that highlights the anonymous nature of online correspondence. It originally appeared in a cartoon by Peter Steiner. A: "I can't say something that mean, even to a stranger." B: "Oh, sure you can! On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog."
See also: dog, know, nobody, on

The lights are on, but nobody's home

A humorous expression used to say that someone is stupid or not paying attention, perhaps because they are not responding to what one is saying. Hello, Pete? Earth to Pete. The lights are on, but nobody's home.
See also: but, home, lights

like nobody's business

To an extreme or intense degree. The other team came out and dominated our players like nobody's business.
See also: business, like

It's an ill wind that blows nobody (any) good.

Prov. Even misfortune can benefit someone or something.; A calamity for one person usually benefits somebody else. The tremendous hailstorm left gaping holes in most of the roofs in town, so many families were homeless. The roofing companies, however, made plenty of money fixing those holes. It's an ill wind that blows nobody any good.
See also: blow, good, ill, nobody, that, wind

like crazy

 and like mad
Fig. furiously; very much, fast, many, or actively. People are coming in here like crazy. There isn't enough room for them all. We sold ice cream like crazy. It was a very hot day.
See also: crazy, like

like nobody's business

Inf. very well; very much. She can sing like nobody's business. What a set of pipes! My mom can cook chocolate chip cookies like nobody's business.
See also: business, like

nobody's fool

Fig. a sensible and wise person who is not easily deceived. Mary is nobody's fool. She watches out for people who might try to cheat her. Anne may seem as though she's not very bright, but she's nobody's fool.
See also: fool

There's nobody home.

There are no brains in someone's head. There's lots of goodwill in that head, but there's nobody home. What a fool! There's nobody home—that's for sure.
See also: home, nobody

like crazy

Also, like mad; like nobody's business. With exceeding enthusiasm or speed, without restraint. For example, We shopped like crazy and bought all our furniture in one day, or Once he's out of the town limits he drives like mad, or The choir sang the Hallelujah Chorus like nobody's business. The first terms employ crazy and mad in the sense of "lunatic" as a hyperbole for lack of restraint; the third implies that no business could be conducted in such an extraordinary fashion. The first and third date from the 1920s, the second from the mid-1600s.
See also: crazy, like

nobody home

1. No one is paying attention, as in She threw the ball right past him, yelling "Nobody home!"
2. The person being discussed is mentally impaired and so cannot understand, as in When the woman did not answer, he concluded it was a case of nobody home. Both usages transfer the absence of someone in a dwelling to absent-mindedness or mental deficiency, and are thought to have been invented by cartoonist and journalist Thomas Aloysius Dorgan ("TAD") around 1900. He often embellished his column with such punning amplifications as "Nobody home but the telephone and that's in the hands of the receiver," or "Nobody home but the oyster and that's in the stew."
See also: home, nobody

nobody's fool

A person who cannot be duped or taken advantage of, as in You can't put anything over on Ryan-he's nobody's fool. [Early 1900s]
See also: fool

like nobody's business

INFORMAL
1. If someone or something is doing something like nobody's business, they are doing it very fast, in large amounts or to a great extent. The people with this disease are dying off like nobody's business. I'm enjoying myself like nobody's business.
2. If someone or something does something like nobody's business, they do it very well. He sings like Sinatra, dances like Sammy Davis, plays piano like nobody's business, and lays on the charm like an old pro.
See also: business, like

the lights are on but nobody's home

or

the lights are on but no one's home

INFORMAL
If you say of someone that the lights are on but nobody's home, you mean that they are stupid or not reacting to what is happening. When I tell them anything, they look at me like the lights are on but nobody's home.
See also: but, home, lights, on

nobody in their right mind

or

no one in their right mind

COMMON If you say nobody in their right mind or no one in their right mind would do a particular thing, you mean that it is a stupid or crazy thing to do. No one in their right mind would go travelling on their own in such a dangerous region. Note: You can also say who in their right mind? with the same meaning. Who in their right mind would give information like that over the phone?
See also: mind, nobody, right

like crazy

and like mad
mod. furiously; very much, fast, many, or actively. Look at those people on the bank. They’re catching fish like mad! I’m running like mad and still can’t catch up.
See also: crazy, like

like nobody’s business

mod. very well; very much; very fast. She can sing like nobody’s business. What a set of pipes!
See also: business, like

a nobody

n. an insignificant person. (Compare this with somebody.) Don’t pay any attention to him. He’s just a nobody.
See also: nobody

There’s nobody home

sent. There are no brains in someone’s head. You twit! There’s nobody home—that’s for sure.
See also: home, nobody

like crazy

Informal
To an exceeding degree: They were running around like crazy.
See also: crazy, like
References in classic literature ?
Nobody but just you and me - it ain't much of a display for the barkeeper.
No time fooled away; nobody straggling in after the curtain's up.
That's what I say, and I've said it many a time; but there's nobody 'ull ventur a ten-pun' note on their ghos'es as they make so sure of.
Nobody knows what I've gone through -- nobody can know but myself.
He's scared to leave home for fear his mother will take a spell and nobody there but the hired girl.
I do not mind nobody wanting me if the Almighty decreed it so for His own wise purposes.
He was assured that nobody and nothing had passed these officials since his last inquiries; whereupon he and the slightly bewildered Angus were shot up in the lift like a rocket, till they reached the top floor.
Captain Dobbin had some thoughts of joining the party at supper: as, in truth, he found the Vauxhall amusements not particularly lively-- but he paraded twice before the box where the now united couples were met, and nobody took any notice of him.
Nobody likes a mil-yun-aire, Nobody likes hia looks, Nobody'll share his slightest care, He classes with thugs and crooks.
Let nobody laugh at the unique anecdote here related.
I pulled through it, though nobody threw me out a rope.
His healthy state of mind appeared even to derive a gratification from Clennam's position of embarrassment and isolation among the good company; and if Clennam had been in that condition with which Nobody was incessantly contending, he would have suspected it, and would have struggled with the suspicion as a meanness, even while he sat at the table.
They slept, or appeared to sleep, for some time; nobody stirring but Barney, who rose once or twice to throw coals on the fire.
Nobody knows how, nobody knows when, nobody knows where.
As the single gentleman after some weeks' occupation of his lodgings, still declined to correspond, by word or gesture, either with Mr Brass or his sister Sally, but invariably chose Richard Swiveller as his channel of communication; and as he proved himself in all respects a highly desirable inmate, paying for everything beforehand, giving very little trouble, making no noise, and keeping early hours; Mr Richard imperceptibly rose to an important position in the family, as one who had influence over this mysterious lodger, and could negotiate with him, for good or evil, when nobody else durst approach his person.