Student or Learner
In this excerpt from an essay on human pleasure:
tragedies, horror movies often have no redeeming aesthetic or
intellectual qualities. But people like them, lining up to see innocents
killed, tortured, and eaten by creatures such as zombies, axewielding
psychopaths, sadistic aliens, swamp things, really mean
babies, and, in one classic that I remember from way back (Rabid),
a phallic growth coming out from an attractive woman’s armpit".
I have difficulty understanding the meaning of "swamp things" and "really mean babies".
What do these expressions mean?
Thank you in advance,
a. Selfish in a petty way; unkind.
b. Cruel, spiteful, or malicious. (PS.: "She was the meanest cat in old Chicago town" Boney M': Ma Baker; I think they meant it that way, didn't they? )
2. Ignoble; base: a mean motive.
3. Miserly; stingy.
a. Low in quality or grade; inferior.
b. Low in value or amount; paltry: paid no mean amount for the new shoes.
5. Common or poor in appearance; shabby: "The rowhouses had been darkened by the rain and looked meaner and grimmer than ever" (Anne Tyler).
6. Low in social status; of humble origins.
7. Humiliated or ashamed.
8. In poor physical condition; sick or debilitated.
9. Extremely unpleasant or disagreeable: The meanest storm in years.
10. Informal Ill-tempered.
a. Hard to cope with; difficult or troublesome: He throws a mean fast ball.
b. Excellent; skillful: She plays a mean game of bridge.
Last edited by ~Mav~; 11-May-2010 at 01:40.
Thank you very much.
Please allow me one more question about this. I came across the following sentence: "Shit, you play some mean cards, Shepard." (Commander Shepard won 500 bucks in a poker game.) Does the phrase "mean cards" refer to the last definition in the above mentioned list (i.e. Excellent; skillful: She plays a mean game of bridge.), or does it mean that Shepard had a wicked hand, she held such strong cards that were impossible to overcome? Which of these conveys the meaning of "you play some mean cards"? (My bet is on the latter one, the wicked hand, but I'm just guessing.)
So "swamp things" could be replaced by "swamp monsters", right?
Thank you for your help,