Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Shoddy material, as for the construction of standardized housing.
  • adjective Made of shoddy material; cheaply built.
  • adjective Marked by a mediocre uniformity of appearance or style.
  • adjective Tawdry; tacky.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun US Cheap, low-quality building material, especially as that used to make conventional suburban housing of a uniform design
  • adjective US Made of this material

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[ Reduplication of tacky.]

Examples

  • As you may know I have a fondness for the ticky-tacky known as Reality Television, I so love the term because it's so not anyone's reality I've ever known.

    Holly Cara Price: Rubbernecking's Year in Television 2011

  • As you may know I have a fondness for the ticky-tacky known as Reality Television, I so love the term because it's so not anyone's reality I've ever known.

    Holly Cara Price: Rubbernecking's Year in Television 2011

  • The overall effect is to put a bureaucratic stranglehold on attempts of protest organizers to give expression to the 1st amendment, so tying them up in ticky-tacky provisions, fines and possible jail time that only a masochist would organize a protest with a message that the city fathers don't want to hear.

    Andy Thayer: Why Emanuel's Proposed Anti-Protester Ordinances Should Concern Everyone

  • The monstrous and incredibly ugly development of ticky-tacky on Jocotepec´s east side reminds me of another place from my youth.

    Page 2

  • The overall effect is to put a bureaucratic stranglehold on attempts of protest organizers to give expression to the 1st amendment, so tying them up in ticky-tacky provisions, fines and possible jail time that only a masochist would organize a protest with a message that the city fathers don't want to hear.

    Andy Thayer: Why Emanuel's Proposed Anti-Protester Ordinances Should Concern Everyone

  • The monstrous and incredibly ugly development of ticky-tacky on Jocotepec´s east side reminds me of another place from my youth.

    Page 2

  • The monstrous and incredibly ugly development of ticky-tacky on Jocotepec´s east side reminds me of another place from my youth.

    Page 2

  • The monstrous and incredibly ugly development of ticky-tacky on Jocotepec´s east side reminds me of another place from my youth.

    Page 2

  • The monstrous and incredibly ugly development of ticky-tacky on Jocotepec´s east side reminds me of another place from my youth.

    Page 2

  • The monstrous and incredibly ugly development of ticky-tacky on Jocotepec´s east side reminds me of another place from my youth.

    Page 2

Comments

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  • In the first forty or so examples, Pete Seeger, who made the song "Little Boxes" popular, is mentioned twice, but Malvina Reynolds, who wrote the song and originated the term, is not mentioned at all. Daly City is mentioned, and she was passing through Daly City when she got the idea for the song.

    July 2, 2012