wet noodle

See also: wet-noodle



wet noodle (plural wet noodles)

  1. A noodle that is freshly made, before it dries out and becomes rigid.
  2. A means of enacting a mild or ineffective symbolic punishment.
    • 1990, United States. Congress. House. Committee on Ways and Means. Subcommittee on Trade, United States--People's Republic of China (PRC) trade relations:
      I think I understand police states and things like that. They are not intimidated by being whipped with a wet noodle, and Jackson-Vanik is a wet noodle.
    • 2002, Nils Jareborg, Scraps of Penal Theory, →ISBN, page 67:
      The wet noodle punishment argument is that it is in practice impossible to punish, e.g., a committed rape with beating the offender with a wet noodle.
    • 2007, Tom Thunderhorse, Charlie Goodbear, →ISBN, page 95:
      “Yeah, if they get out of line, I'll beat 'em with a wet noodle!” Mark chuckles.
    • 2011, John Michael Morgan, Brand Against the Machine, →ISBN:
      If you think your brand isn't important, you need to hit yourself with a wet noodle and then crack open this book.
    • 2013, Patrick Brighton, Hunters' Guide to Treating Medical Emergencies, →ISBN, page 68:
      There, I said it, but we'll get out the wet noodle later.
  3. A wimp.
    • 1978, The Colorado Quarterly - Volume 27, page 115:
      I am a wet noodle, she had said sadly to Sister Albertine.
    • 2003, Gary Heller, White Holler Crime: Club Fed and the Federal Courthouse, →ISBN, page 78:
      He claimed to be an old army paratrooper, but talked like a social working wet noodle.
    • 2004, John Fuhrman, If They Say No Just Say Next!, →ISBN:
      They may be just a "wet noodle" who has had some negative experiences in the conventional business world that caused them to be defensive in their attitude.
    • 2007, Beth Schiemer, Forgotten Paths, →ISBN:
      Mr. Masters was a little bit of a wet noodle during their last trip.
    • 2014, Brendan Murphy, All of the Commodore's Men, →ISBN:
      Lord Dr. Roland Remington Esquire JD PhD was a limp wet noodle of a man who seemed to be an identical twin as the character “smiling Bob” from the iconic Extenze male enhancement television commercials.
    • 2015, Sophie Hudson, Home Is Where My People Are: The Roads That Lead Us to Where We Belong, →ISBN:
      Because I, on the other hand, am pretty much a wet noodle who moonlights as a peacemaker.
  4. Someone or something that is limp, relaxed, or weak.
    • 1983, Women's Sports - Volume 5, page ccxiv:
      A day in the water in any weather need not turn you into a cold, wet noodle if you suit up in the proper attire.
    • 1986, United States. Congress. House. Committee on Banking, Finance, and Urban Affairs, U.S. Proposals on International Debt Crisis:
      I wouldn't go as far as Robert Samuelson did in Newsweek in referring to your plan as a wet noodle. It seems that somewhere between a wet noodle and bold new initiative, we might have reality.
    • 1990, The Mathematica Journal - Volumes 1-2, page 115:
      If you're trying to control that wet noodle, there's got to be a lot of intelligence behind it in the way of microchips actually out there doing the controlling."
    • 2007, Jim Dent, Twelve Mighty Orphans, →ISBN:
      As he said “hands,” Hardy hit the boy with a pile-driving right that turned him into a wet noodle.
    • 2014, Sara Pizano, The Joan Chronicles, →ISBN, page 78:
      There are few people who know which buttons to push on which meridians to render you a wet noodle, and Ivan is one of them.
    • 2014, Nina Solomon, The Love Book: A Novel, →ISBN:
      All at once she realized that the axis she had been clinging to like a buoy in the ocean was nothing more than a wet noodle.
    • 2013, Donald E. Struble, Automotive Accident Reconstruction: Practices and Principles, →ISBN:
      The stiffer parts carry more of the load, whereas a wet noodle would carry none.
    • 2013, B. Protter, ‎S. Travin, Sexual Perversion: Integrative Treatment Approaches for the Clinician, →ISBN:
      As Stoller says, "perversion is a sturdy word, throbbing with assumptions, while paraphilia is a wet noodle."
    • 2015, Lydia Kang, Catalyst, →ISBN:
      He reaches for my hand and runs his finger across my palm. My spine turns into a wet noodle and I grab for his hand.
  5. (slang) A man with erectile dysfunction.
    • 1978, Charles Bukowski, Women, page 235:
      "Don't drink too much tonight. You know what happens when you drink too much." She lowered her voice. "You become a wet noodle."
    • 1984, James Sherburne, Poor boy and a long way from home, →ISBN, page 320:
      "A real wet noodle — I wouldn't have had him on a bet," Maxine sniffed.
    • 2009, John C. Hallenborg, Life, Sex, and Prostate Cancer Surgery, →ISBN:
      Debbie and I would speak on the phone at least once a day. She made oblique inquiries into how I was feeling sexually, which I brushed off with a few poorly chosen jokes. Looking back, this joking around was a good way to deflect my fears. Call this the wet noodle phase.
    • 2012, Michael Beres, The Lazlo Horvath Series, →ISBN:
      I'm sorry to have become the wet noodle after dinner last night ... especially after your dance for me. I will make amends this evening.
  6. (slang) A flaccid penis.
    • 1981, Modern International Drama - Volumes 15-17, page 25:
      TONO: A wet noodle. That's the explanation I gave to the desk clerk for having to leave in such a hurry. (He laughs.) A wet noodle. (He makes the gesture with a flaccid finger.) Oh, Jesus, and the guy understood.
    • 1983, Cosmopolitan - Volume 195, page 242:
      Today, she calls her state of sexual boredom chronic and puts the blame for it on liberated men. “They've gotten so ... There's this little wet noodle—this little nothing, you know—flapping around between my legs.
    • 2003, Dennis Vebert, Mind Games, →ISBN:
      Warm pleasure replaced cold pain and I looked down at myself... two shriveled up prunes and a wet noodle.
    • 2005, Jake Logan, Slocum 317: Slocum and the Sierra Madras Gold, →ISBN:
      Stinking bastards, think they are such lovers. Half drunk and half hard. They got a wet noodle they want to stick in you.”
  7. A weak handshake.
    • 1998, Valerie A. M. Demetros, More Secrets of Successful Exhibiting, →ISBN, page 150:
      A good solid handshake tells it all. Beware of the "wet noodle" handshake, which conveys a weak and unsure character, or using both hands, such as the "politician's handshake" or the "glove," using both hands around your hand.
    • 2003, Tiffany Field, Touch, →ISBN, page 22:
      Clearly the "wet noodle" handshake will not conquer the world and the "knuckle grinder" will not win friends.
    • 2008, Christopher J. Andrews, Why Didn't Somebody Tell Me This Stuff?, →ISBN, page 59:
      On the contrary, anyone who has been on the receiving end of the proverbial “wet noodle” handshake also knows what I am talking about.