martinet

1. a rigid military disciplinarian 2. one who demands absolute adherence to forms and rules


I saw this word in a recent New Yorker article about the sitcom The Office: At the office, we have come to understand, the boss is always a blustery martinet; abbreviations are a B.F.D.; your co-workers eat your food, talk your ear off, and stab you in the back; and work has no inherent value.”

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2 Responses to martinet

  1. Dad says:

    Would it surprise you to know that the thesaurus in Sherlock lists 39 words for “martinet”? It surprised me, somehow.
    About the New Yorker article quotation: I don’t get it, but I suppose I might if I knew the context. Actually, the whole quotation seems like something that would be said by the kind of malcontent whose attitude begs the boss to behave like a blustery martinet.

  2. Karl says:

    Wow, that is surprising!
    The quote must seem strange out of context. Sorry about that. Actually, it was referring to the way most television programming depicts office life, not what the writer believed to be true.

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