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Alternative forms[edit]


From green +‎ -ie.


  • (file)


greenie (plural greenies)

  1. (chiefly Australia, New Zealand, slang, derogatory) An environmentalist, someone who shows concern for the environment; often aimed at environmental extremists.
    • 2000, Australian Association for Environmental Education, Australian Journal of Environmental Education, volume 15-17, page 73:
      People ask me if am I a greenie and I go, ‘No, not in the sense that I chain myself to trees, no I′m not. But in the sense that I am concerned about the environment and do my little bit to help, then yes I am.’
    • 2008, Adeline Catherine Anderson, Morning Light[1], page 83:
      “What′s a greenie doing with a gas hog like that?”
    • 2009, Sean Dooley, Cooking With Baz, Large Print 16pt Edition, page 25,
      ‘And whadda you want?’ the barman spat at me.
      Above his head was a large sign that read ‘Fertilize the Bush – Doze in a Greenie’. I was dressed in a flannelette shirt and army trousers – exactly like the Greenie protestors they′d been battling the previous year.
    Synonym: tree hugger
  2. (Australian politics, informal, by extension) A member of the Green Party.
  3. (US, Wyoming, derogatory, slang) A person from Colorado; after the color of the Colorado license plate.
    • 2007, James Prosek; Joseph Furia; Steven Hayhurst; Joseph Kingsbery, Tight Lines: Ten Years of the Yale Anglers′ Journal, page 140:
      At Alcova, the problem is compounded for the fool or fools when they have greenie license plates and behave like tourists. The growing combative presence in their rear is chalk full of true Wyoming grit.
  4. (informal) An unripe fruit.
    • 1987, Maxine Kumin, In deep: country essays, page 98:
      In every kitchen arises the acrid tang of green- tomato pickle, chutney, chili; on every south-facing kitchen windowsill the most promising greenies line up to be coaxed ripe.
    • 1995, Michigan Out-of-doors, volume 49, page 239:
      Mid-August, normally prime berry-picking time, came and went. Still too many greenies.
    • 2000, Ken Tate, Janice Tate, Good Old Days Remembers Working on the Farm, page 115:
      The only way I could keep up with the veteran pickers was to pick almost every strawberry in my row — ripe, unripe, overripe or damaged. ... Then he would pay me 2 cents a quart for the good ones and charge me a penny for the "greenies."
  5. (US, slang) A beginner, a novice; a greenhorn.
    • 1969, Harry Golden, The Right Time: An Autobiography[2], page 45:
      [] “When the teacher says ‘Good Morning,’ you say, ‘Fuck You.’ That′s what you say in America.” Sometimes they varied this with “son of a bitch.” Sure enough the greenie parroted these instructions to the merriment of the classroom.
    • 1981, William Albert Wilson, On Being Human: The Folklore of Mormon Missionaries, volume 60-66, page 9:
      In California a senior companion offered to demonstrate to his new greenie how he succeeded in placing Books of Mormon in people′s houses. The two of them knocked on a door. A woman answered, and the senior companion threw a book past her into the house and then ran, leaving the greenie to stammer out an explanation to the irate woman.
    • 2001, Marcus Sheridan, Heavenly Father's Angels: The Ultimate Missionary Guide[3], page 78:
      If you, as a trainer, work to instill a vision in your greenie, his whole mission will be drastically changed.
    • 2004, Robert T Uda, Mission Accomplished[4], page 90:
      When you become a trainer, be the best trainer a greenie ever had.
    • 2008, Brian D. Krueger, The College Grad Job Hunter[5], page 207:
      You will probably know pretty quickly if you are dealing with a “greenie” who is reading from a script or a seasoned professional. If it′s a greenie, give him a polite “no thank you” and hang up. But stick with the pro through the entire call.
    Synonyms: greenhorn, tyro
  6. (informal) A small, green object.
    • 2014, Carl Hiaasen, Carl Hiaasen Collection: Hoot, Flush, Scat, Chomp:
      He dropped the emerald studs into Abbey's palm and said, “Those little greenies are worth more than diamonds.”
    1. (slang) A blob of nasal mucus; a bogey.
    2. (US, slang) Amphetamines used in baseball.
      • 1992, Michael Sokolove, Hustle: The Myth, Life, and Lies of Pete Rose, New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, published 2005, →ISBN, page 78:
        When Rose broke into major-league baseball, the use of amphetamines, or “greenies” as the players called them, was an aboveboard practice. There were more players who took them than there were who lifted weights. The greenies were frequently dispensed by team trainers.
      • 2010, Aaron Skirboll, The Pittsburgh Cocaine Seven: How a Ragtag Group of Fans Took the Fall for Major League Baseball, page 36:
        Feeling down? Pop a greenie. Had a rough night? Pop a greenie. Long road trip? Double header? Need a base hit? The answer for it all was the same: pop a greenie.
        Greenies were what everyone was doing,” Koch says.
  7. (informal) Any of various birds having predominantly green plumage.
    1. The green-headed sunbird, Cyanomitra verticalis, of Africa.
      • 2008, Nicholas Drayson, A Guide to the Birds of East Africa, page 23:
        All eye turned to the small jewel of a bird that was sipping nectar from an orange-flowered plant. "A greenie, I think, Rose," said Hilary Fotherington-Thomas, squinting down her binoculars.
    2. The scaly-breasted lorikeet, Trichoglossus chlorolepidotus, of Australia.
      • 1952 February 14, The Cairns Post, page 8, column 3:
        In spite of repeated public statements and reminders, school boys and others are continuing to trap `bluies' and `greenies,' particularly in the Brisbane area, the Department of Agriculture and Stock announced to-day. These birds belong to a family more correctly called lorikeets, and as such, under the Fauna Protection Act, they are totally protected throughout Queensland.
    3. The white-plumed honeyeater, Ptilotula penicillata, of Australia.
      • 1896 October 19, The South Australian Register, page 6, column 5:
        I don't know how many eggs the mother cuckoo laid, but we picked up two young unfledged greenies which were thrown out of the nest by the intruder.
  8. (informal) The Atlantic thread herring (Opisthonema oglinum), a herring-like fish in the family Clupeidae.
    • 1992, M. Timothy O'Keefe, Larry Larsen, Fish & Dive Florida and the Keys: A Candid Destination Guide (Outdoor Travel Series; 3), Lakeland, FL: Larsen's Outdoor Publishing, →ISBN, page 63:
      In the summer time, live bait is often used almost within throwing distance of the jetties for the kingfish and cobia. Local captains use greenies or threadfin herring primarily and catch them on gold hooks right outside the Stuart inlet.
  9. (informal) The yellowtail rockfish (Sebastes flavidus), a fish in the family Sebastidae.
    • 2007, R. Quentin Grafton, Harry W. Nelson, Bruce Turris, “How to Resolve the Class II Common Property Problem? The Case of British Columbia's Multi-Species Groundfish Trawl Fishery”, in Trond Bjørndal, Daniel V. Gordon, Ragnar Arnason, U. Rashid Sumaila, editors, Advances in Fisheries Economics: Festschrift in Honour of Professor Gordon R. Munro, Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, →ISBN, page 61:
      Depending upon the species, fishers may harvest along the ocean floor for many rockfish and other groundfish, while hake, pollock, and some rockfish species (i.e. greenies and brownies) are targeted with mid-water trawls.
    Coordinate term: brownie
  10. (surfing, slang) Short for greenback.
    • 2014, Dianne Ellis, A Surfer's Healing Journey: The Beauty Beneath Life and Death, page 110:
      “Come on Lil, catch a greenie,” I say. In between wipe-outs, Lily is having a great time too, occasionally catching waves all the way into the beach.
  11. (golf) The player whose ball is closest to the hole on a par-3 hole after the first shot (drive), in the case when multiple players reach the green on that first shot and the player with the closest ball sinks the ball within the next two shots.

See also[edit]