yesterday

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born yesterday

Extremely naïve, gullible, or unintelligent, like a newborn baby. Almost always used in the negative or as a rhetorical question. Don't think you can fool me with that old ruse, I wasn't born yesterday, you know. Of course I know that major political issues can't be fixed overnight. Do you think I was born yesterday?
See also: born, yesterday

yesterday's man/woman

Someone who has passed the pinnacle of their career. Bob is never going to give up his cushy job—he's yesterday's man, and his next career move is retirement!
See also: man, woman

be born yesterday

To be naïve or easily deceived. Often used in the phrase "I wasn't born yesterday." Oh, you expect me to believe that you've been in your room all night and didn't just sneak in the house a few minutes ago? Well, I wasn't born yesterday—and I heard the door open! Do you think I was born yesterday? There's no way that email isn't a scam!
See also: born, yesterday

I wasn't born yesterday

I am not extremely naïve, gullible, or unintelligent. When one is referred to as "born yesterday," they are being likened to a newborn baby, who has no experience with the world. Don't think you can fool me with that old ruse. I wasn't born yesterday, you know. Of course I know that major political issues can't be fixed overnight. I wasn't born yesterday.
See also: born, yesterday

yesterday's news

Someone or something that is no longer receiving or worthy of public interest, importance, or influence. I don't know why you're still campaigning for that hack—he's yesterday's news. The once-prominent social media platform is now yesterday's news among a new generation of smartphone users.
See also: news

I need it yesterday.

Inf. an answer to the question "When do you need this?" (Indicates that the need is urgent.) Bob: When do you need that urgent survey? Bill: I need it yesterday. Mary: Where's the Wilson contract? Sue: Do you need it now? Mary: I need it yesterday! Where is it?
See also: need, yesterday

need something yesterday

Inf. to require something in a very big hurry. Yes, I'm in a hurry! I need it yesterday! When do I need it? Now! Now! No, I need it yesterday!
See also: need, yesterday

not born yesterday

Fig. experienced; knowledgeable in the ways of the world. I know what's going on. I wasn't born yesterday. Sally knows the score. She wasn't born yesterday.
See also: born, not, yesterday

Yesterday wouldn't be too soon.

Immediately.; Right away. (An answer to the question "When do you want this?") Mary: Mr. Franklin, when do you want this? Fred: Well, yesterday wouldn't be too soon. Alice: When am I supposed to have this finished? Sue: Yesterday wouldn't be too soon.
See also: soon, yesterday

not born yesterday

More experienced and less naive than one appears to be, as in Don't think you can fool me; I wasn't born yesterday. This term gained currency from the title of Garson Kanin's popular Broadway play, Born Yesterday, which was made into an even more popular film. In both, Judy Holliday played a stereotypical dumb blonde who shows more common sense than her sophisticated acquaintances. [Early 1800s]
See also: born, not, yesterday

not born yesterday

If you say that someone wasn't born yesterday you mean that they have enough experience to not be easily tricked. Listen, I wasn't born yesterday. This looks like a work of fiction to me. Note: This expression is often varied. For instance, you can say that someone must think you were born yesterday if they treat you as if you are stupid. They must think I was born yesterday if they think I'd fall for a trick like that.
See also: born, not, yesterday

I wasn't born yesterday

used to indicate that you are not foolish or gullible.
See also: born, yesterday

yesterday's man

a man, especially a politician, whose career is finished or past its peak.
See also: man

yesterday's news

a person or thing that is no longer of interest.
See also: news

I wasn’t born ˈyesterday

(spoken) used to say that you are not stupid enough to believe what somebody is telling you: You don’t expect me to believe that, do you? I wasn’t born yesterday, you know.
See also: born, yesterday

a ˌweek ˈyesterday, last ˈMonday, etc.

(especially British English) seven days before the day that you mention: It was a week yesterday that we heard the news.
See also: last, week

born yesterday

Naive or ignorant. Used in negative constructions: Of course I can use a computer; I wasn't born yesterday.
See also: born, yesterday
References in classic literature ?
I had an errand yesterday which I did not finish; that is why I am here again so soon.
The day before yesterday," said Dorothea, "when I had asked him to come to Lowick to give me his opinion on the affairs of the Hospital, he told me everything about his conduct and feelings in this sad event which has made ignorant people cast suspicions on him.
That is why I came yesterday, and why I am come to-day.
The fragile creature who was crying close to her--there might still be time to rescue her from the misery of false incompatible bonds; and this moment was unlike any other: she and Rosamond could never be together again with the same thrilling consciousness of yesterday within them both.
He said yesterday that no other woman existed for him beside you.
Pontellier's absence; it's a wonder Mademoiselle Reisz did not tell me; and your moving--mother told me yesterday.
We had a sailor-man over, the morning before yesterday, to complain of his messages having been picked up.
You will tell him that you want to see the waste-paper of yesterday.
If I could wake back again into the time before yesterday, I would choose to be true to my calmer affections, and live without the joy of love.
But, Maggie," said Stephen, seating himself by her again, "is it possible you don't see that what happened yesterday has altered the whole position of things?
She had her purse in her pocket, with all her money in it,--a bank-note and a sovereign; she had kept it in her pocket from forgetfulness, after going out to make purchases the day before yesterday.
I've only just waked up, and wanted to go to you, but was delayed owing to my clothes; I forgot yesterday to ask her .
It was when I was wandering about yesterday, rather delirious, I chanced upon a man who had been run over .
By the way, mamma, I did an unpardonable thing yesterday.
Thank God; I was afraid the same thing as yesterday was beginning again," said Pulcheria Alexandrovna, crossing herself.