nobody home


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there's nobody home

Said of someone whom one thinks is dimwitted or mentally impaired. I've been trying to get information from him for half an hour, but there's nobody home as far as I can tell. She's sweet and very attractive, but there's nobody home when you try to discuss any serious topic.
See also: home, nobody

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
References in periodicals archive ?
This can take a period of time before causing a fire when there is nobody home to detect and extinguish it.
Luckily there was nobody home when the fire started.
Singing "Hey ho, nobody home, meat nor drink nor money have I none .
But by then six of Minot's seven radio stations were owned by Clear Channel, and when the police called those stations there was nobody home.
There had been a dream start for Newport when in the second minute Nathan Williams collected a Jamie Davies kick and found nobody home in the Aberavon defence as he sent Craig Hill in for a try that James Dixon converted.
The house was clearly being lived in, but a knock on the door revealed that there was nobody home, or at least nobody willing to admit they were home.
of Vietnam, although there's really nobody home underneath that character's thin skin.
Unfortunately, there was nobody home at either of the two addresses.
Police say most homes are broken into when there is nobody home so people should take crime prevention measures before leaving.
But beneath the poisonous gaiety of artificial tints and manufactured objects (the striped lollipops, the X of the crash dummy's torso) there's a deeper sense of danger that's impossible to pinpoint, a sparkle of menace in the unexpected (and sometimes inhuman) camera angles, a lingering unease in the deserted street and vacuous noonday bar interior: nobody home.
But if the new Impala, 2001 Olds Aurora and midsize Saturn are indicators, there's nobody home at GM Design.
In the long run, the perception becomes that there is nobody home.
My vineyard is number seven on your map but don't go there today because there ain't nobody home," he guffawed.
Nobody home there either, but the pen falls from my hand in the middle of the "r,'' and I have to reach down to one knee to retrieve it.
Track Listing PART 1 Shine On You Crazy Diamond Learning to Fly High Hopes Welcome to the Machine Mother One of These Days Pigs (Three Different Ones) PART 2 Echoes Time The Great Gig in the Sky Wish You Were Here Keep Talking Nobody Home Us & Them Money The Happiest Days of Our Lives Another Brick in the Wall (part 2) Comfortably Numb Run Like Hell GIVEAWAY VOUCHER To claim your free promo DVD, simply present your voucher at the Echo arena Box Office.