A ramrod, of course, is a rod that you ram down the barrel of a gun (to clean it or charge it.)
More generally, to ramrod something is to use force to get it done.
And, a ramrod is also a person who is very strict.
Part of speech:
Both a verb ("to ramrod something")
and a noun ("She's such a ramrod.")
ramrods, ramrodded, ramrodding
How to use it:
For the verb, talk about ramrodding something, often through/into/in something else: "the new coach is going to ramrod this team into victory," "let's ramrod this operation and be done with it," "let's ramrod this agenda through the committee," "they'll use their overwhelming voting power to ramrod in their preferred candidate," etc.
For the noun, call someone a ramrod if he or she is super-strict and demanding: "a ramrod for a teacher," "their boss is such a ramrod."
You can also use the noun like an adjective to talk about something that's "ramrod straight," someone with a "ramrod demeanor" or "ramrod bearing," or someone's "ramrod posture."
Keep in mind the metaphorical power of "ramrod:" it's a straight, inflexible, powerful, authoritative object used in a controlling, possibly violent way.
It takes grit, determination, and patience to ramrod a research project through an internal review board--and that's just the project's first hurdle.
Even from a distance, I could tell from her ramrod posture that she was uncomfortable.
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "ramrod" means when you can explain it without saying "thrust" or "drill sergeant."
Think of a process or goal that requires care, thought, or tact, and fill in the blanks: "You can't just ramrod _____; you have to _____."
Example: "You can't just ramrod a home improvement project you've never tried before; you have to research it, watch how-to videos, and make sure you've got the right materials."
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game and quote below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
We’re starting off with easy questions, then working our way toward some whoppers at the end of the month, all the while focusing on funny, unusual words; surprising word histories; and cool tidbits about the language.
The word “_ _ _ _ _ _cracy” means literally “rule by writing desk”—i.e., professional paper shuffling. What is the word?
Try this one today. It should feel moderately easy:
World War II’s two types of dirigibles were A-rigid, and what?
A Point Well Made:
Aleister Crowley: “I was asked to memorize what I did not understand; and, my memory being so good, it refused to be insulted in that manner.”
1. The opposite of RAMROD is
A. CANNON FODDER
B. LENIENT AUTHORITY
C. IMPENETRABLE SHIELD
2. He barged into the meeting, _____ as a ramrod.
Answers are below.
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Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.
Answers to review questions:
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