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a sad state (of affairs)

A particularly unfortunate, unpleasant, and/or upsetting situation or set of circumstances. Their company has been in a sad state after Jonathan took over. It's a sad state of affairs when you can no longer be sure how you're going to feed your children each night.
See also: sad, state

sadder but wiser

Knowledgeable or experienced after having gone through something unpleasant or unfortunate. We came through the economic disaster sadder but wiser, hopefully better prepared for such disasters in the future. I left the dinner sadder but wiser, understanding just how entrenched her family's bigotry still is.
See also: but, sad, wiser

disappointed at someone or something

 and disappointed in someone or something
becoming sad because of someone or something. I am really disappointed at what you did. I am very disappointed in you. That was a terrible thing to do. They were disappointed in the outcome.
See also: disappointed

It is a poor heart that never rejoices.

 and It is a sad heart that never rejoices.
Prov. Even a habitually sad person cannot be sad all the time. (Sometimes used to indicate that a habitually sad person is happy about something.) Jill: I've never seen Sam smile before, but today, at his retirement party, he smiled. Jane: It is a poor heart that never rejoices.
See also: heart, never, poor, rejoice, that

sadder but wiser

Cliché unhappy but knowledgeable [about someone or something--after an unpleasant event]. After the accident, I was sadder but wiser, and would never make the same mistake again. We left the meeting sadder but wiser, knowing that we could not ever come to an agreement with Becky's aunt.
See also: but, sad, wiser

sorry sight

 and sad sight
a sight that one regrets seeing; someone or something that is unpleasant to look at. Well, aren't you a sorry sight! Go get cleaned up and put on some fresh clothes.
See also: sight, sorry

sadder but wiser

Unhappy but having learned from one's mistakes, as in Sadder but wiser, she's never going near poison ivy again. The pairing of these two adjectives was first recorded in Samuel Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (1798).
See also: but, sad, wiser

sad sack

A singularly inept person, as in Poor George is a hopeless sad sack. This term alludes to a cartoon character, Sad Sack, invented by George Baker in 1942 and representing a soldier in ill-fitting uniform who failed at whatever he tried to do. It was soon transferred to clumsily inept civilians.
See also: sack, sad

sad sack

an inept blundering person. informal, chiefly US
See also: sack, sad

a sad, poor, etc. reflection on something

a thing which damages somebody’s/something’s reputation: The increase in crime is a sad reflection on our society today.
See also: on, reflection, something

too funny, sad, etc. for ˈwords

extremely funny, sad, etc: The man in the post office was too stupid for words.
See also: word


mod. poor; undesirable. This steak is really sad.

sad sack

n. a sad person; a listless or depressed person. Tom always looks like such a sad sack.
See also: sack, sad
References in periodicals archive ?
main parties the Lib Dems were the angriest, while Labour candidates were the saddest on average but also the least arro gant.
I met Rajnath ji today and told him that participation of Mahinda Rajapakse, the butcher of Tamils, will be the saddest day for Tamils all over world in the swearing-in ceremony of Modi and requested him to avoid him presence in it," said Vaiko.
For instance, the day Osama bin Laden was killed is ranked as one of the saddest days on record, thanks to an increase in the use of words like "death," "dead" and "killed.
Ms Pember said: "In all my 17 years as coroner in this county, this is the saddest case, or cases, I have ever had to deal with and I know Northamptonshire Police are doing their very best and endeavouring to find the perpetrator of this vile and barbaric act who has caused the deaths of this entire family - a mother, father and two young daughters.
An inconsolable Tim Cahill has described his red card in Australia's 4-0 defeat to Germany in their World Cup opener as the saddest moment of his career before breaking down in tears in front of the media.
To donate to the Help the Aged "1 is the saddest number" call 0207 239 1983 or visit www.
A comedian at the Oscars / the saddest man of all," Ferrell crooned, before Reilly encouraged him and Black to take serious projects, as well.
A judge at Cardiff Crown Court described her statement as 'one of the saddest things'.
Perhaps that is the saddest lesson of all, the realization that wrongs can no longer be undone, that there is no time left to become someone we ourselves consider admirable.
Help the Aged's "1 is the Saddest Number" campaign highlights the plight of the one million older Britons who will spend Christmas Day alone.
Using a shortlist by the Official UK Charts Company, he measured "tune trigger quotient" measuring heart rate, respiratory response and skin temperature to find the saddest, happiest and most exhilarating tracks.
The saddest thing I have seen is veterans who wait years and years to get help, allowing these things to eat away at them so much that it has in many cases ruined their lives.
In many ways, the saddest part of Ruth's life was after his career was over.
Over 36 years of struggle, the July 1982 massacre of 268 residents of Plan Sanchez, in the region of Baja Verapaz, stands out as among the saddest episodes in a very long conflict.
The saddest story of the week was that of two-year-old Abigail Rae who wandered away from her playgroup and was found drowned in a neighbour's garden.