Main definitions of wonky in English

: wonky1wonky2

wonky1

See synonyms for wonky

Translate wonky into Spanish

adjectiveadjective wonkier, adjective wonkiest

  • 1 informal Crooked; off-center; askew.

    • ‘you have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth’
    • ‘You can have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth and a double chin and stick-out teeth, but if you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.’
    • ‘My housemate can't bear her because she ‘has a wonky nose’!’
    • ‘From the corner of Décarie and Jean-Talon, you can also, for another 10 days, see Cheval Théâtre's wonky Medieval-inspired tents in the distance.’
    • ‘Side kicks are tough for me, ‘cause I have wonky hips, but everything else wasn't too bad.’
    • ‘The names of the tracks were printed on the album sleeve in wonky black type, making them look like classic anonymous ransom demands cobbled together from letters cut out of newspapers.’
    • ‘There are spelling mistakes, the print is wonky, the setting of words completely misinterpreted, and to top it all, a font that I've never in my life used, appears in three random words on the care label.’
    • ‘That means 46% have such fetid breath and wonky teeth that lonely nights, feverish thoughts and painfully stubborn virginity seem an inevitability.’
    • ‘Since I had never mastered the threading of a sewing machine, let alone made an item of clothing, this was taking a risk, but I was soon chalking out patterns and even running up the odd wonky seam without mishap.’
    • ‘Half-timbered buildings, all pastel-shaded, push out over them, looking terribly wonky - as they've doubtless looked for 700 years.’
    • ‘Dismayed residents of Beach Road, Canvey, reckoned Castle Point Council pulled the plug on the scheme to repair drains and replace wonky footpaths, after running out of money.’
    • ‘I was taking screenshots & putting them in the documentation, but now the engineer has debugging turned on and the pages look all wonky.’
    • ‘He chatted in between the songs telling jokes and relating weird stories, he drank beer too, he climbed on the grand piano, he threw flowers into the audience and he fell to his knees more often than a nun with a wonky knee.’
    • ‘But it is precisely that wonky smile, lugubrious air and bitter chocolate voice that pierces the hearts of the toughest ball-breaking women of my acquaintance.’
    • ‘My grandma told me (not in these exact words…) that Sean's head was wonky and I should rub his lumpy skull while it was still soft.’
    • ‘The most I could manage without cocking things up was a wonky line of cross-stitch.’
    • ‘Ed - with his easygoing manner, endless chat and slightly wonky front teeth - is absolutely loveable, but quite obviously can't cook to save his life.’
    • ‘So now I've a wonky mattress… I SO need a new bed (donations gratefully received LOL)!’
    • ‘Now I don't know what is the stranger word, blogging or wonky.’
    • ‘I'm 91 next month but I enjoy good health, apart from a wonky heart and two wonky knees.’
    • ‘To further the debate, or for a cheap gag against a Scouser with a very-slightly wonky gob, who has the temerity to be married to the most powerful man in the country without even ever killing a fox?’
    • ‘Seventy plus males all fighting over the remote control, forgetting your birthday or nailing wonky shelves to the firmament without first reading the instructions?’
    crooked, off-centre, lopsided, askew, skew
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1(of a thing) unsteady; shaky.
      ‘they sat drinking, perched on the wonky stools’
      • ‘He said: ‘One of the wheels is wonky, the handles are unstable and I was feeling quite worried about it.’’
      • ‘It is dark, with low ceilings, crooked wooden floors, wonky bar stools and an array of nationalist paraphernalia on the walls.’
      • ‘My wounds were dressed, the burn on my shoulder was dressed, and I was still a bit wonky as we say in the biz, but I was able to say that I had ‘forgotten’ my medicine, which was a lie.’
      • ‘One pit latrine had a sort of toilet built on top, but it was very wonky.’
      • ‘If books play a bigger part in your life than as props for wonky tables, a means of murdering insects or a useful storage space for old receipts, then a literary evening at one of York's more versatile pubs could be right up your alley.’
      • ‘I, for instance, always choose the one with the wonky wheel and the damp seat, which, as I'm sure my parents would be the first to point out, goes a long to explaining my choice of boyfriends down the years.’
      • ‘The big snow finally did in the wonky bracket and the horizontal pipe is currently filled with brackish water and dead leaves, while the vertical one leans against the house.’
      • ‘If you took a map of Australia and drew a wonky circle around the middle of the country, you'd land in the outback: red dirt, sparely inhabited, the back country.’
      • ‘The railings are broken, the steps descending into Terrace Field are now so wonky that they are impassable to some less agile walkers and many of the trees that once crowned the hilltop have died or blown over.’
      • ‘For those of you who don't know, ‘books’ are those hard, flat things made out of paper and cardboard most often used to stabilize wonky table legs.’
      wobbly, unsteady, unstable, shaky, rocky
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    2. 1.2Not functioning correctly; faulty.
      ‘your sense of judgment is a bit wonky at the moment’
      • ‘Stars, however, are able to plug away with unlimited resources, the objective support of paid yes-men and, for reasons that are sometimes chemically related, a rather wonky perception of their own abilities.’
      • ‘That means the streetcar line may not have gone this far (and I don't think it did, for reasons too wonky to get into here.)’
      • ‘The result is an intimate, small-hours vibe that perfectly suits Poe's tales of relationships going wonky, relationships beyond repair and families that have put all that nonsense behind them and just soldier on.’
      • ‘With several cogs loose in a wonky line-out, it is all the more surprising that Hadden left Scott Lawson on the bench until the 65th minute and ignored the expertise that Ally Kellock has quickly accumulated altogether.’
      • ‘My guess is that the wonky balance sheets that we associate with corporate failures such as Enron and Worldcom were more widespread (although the illegalities may not have been).’
      • ‘Sure, the band gives off all the necessary signs - token pop act on an avant label, lo-fi production, wonky keyboards - but that doesn't mean you should go for it.’
      • ‘And that falsehood - which Charles Windsor was pointing out in his own inimitable, wonky style - is the cruel fantasy the modern PC elite are using to hoodwink our young folk.’
      • ‘And God knows, starting back at that tender age where you think you'll never, ever be popular, you'll shut up and pretend to be anyone but your wonky self just to be accepted.’
      • ‘He delivers his rather wonky interpretation of the Bible in the ‘Zacchaeus.’’
      • ‘I was a little wonky from the weekend, & am not generally the fittest cookie in the box, but it was still disconcerting to be trailing so far behind the ten-year-olds who were having their lessons.’
      • ‘And despite the fact that atheists, agnostics and wonky Catholics die no comparable rituals to the Christian rituals of death and burial have emerged as an alternative.’
      • ‘This may have excellent wonky credentials, or it may be one of those silly policy proposals that people only talk about because they can't think of anything that would work.’
      • ‘It'll do wonders to motivate the mummers, bring out the wonky wordpeckers who inhabit every nook and cranny, not to mention extend a warm welcome to some very odd-ball strangers.’
      • ‘The combination of sensuous, sophisticated mark-making and wonky imagery was, as always in Blackwell's work, irresistible.’
      • ‘Having wonky analytical arguments may be good for policy (and I hope we will always do this) but politically it's disastrous.’
      • ‘It would be grossly unfair if the shortstop was awarded an error when it was the second bagger who dropped the ball, yet that is the kind of wonky logic that applies, in many cases, to the interception stat.’
      • ‘‘Help me,’ I gasped, grabbing at a woman with wonky eyes.’
      • ‘Another Gawker link and I've had over 1,000 hits today, and right as we're about to possibly maybe finally get all wonky with redesign stuff.’
      • ‘All the hits are here, of course, from the goons of Brixton, with their left-handed garage groove, punky punch and bottomless grab-bag of weird, wonky noises.’
      • ‘In those days, his stilted style, forced delivery, and wonky timing were virtues, reinforcing our sense of his hypothetically heartwarming kidness.’
      • ‘The E double might have stumbled on a pretty simple coupling of wonky bass and Mr. Gaye, and many of us were appalled at its simplicity, but no one cares now - that song is huge!’
      • ‘I firmly believe that the BMI dohickey is complete bunk for most people, and since I fully intend to continue working out, my BMI will always be wonky.’
      malfunctioning, broken, damaged, defective, not working, not functioning, in disrepair, out of order, out of commission, inoperative, unsound, unusable, useless
      View synonyms

Pronunciation

wonky

/ˈwäNGkē/ /ˈwɑŋki/

Origin

Early 20th century fanciful formation.

Main definitions of wonky in English

: wonky1wonky2

wonky2

See synonyms for wonky

Translate wonky into Spanish

adjectiveadjective wonkier, adjective wonkiest

  • 1North American informal Having or characterized by an enthusiastic or excessive interest in the specialized details of a particular subject or field, especially political policy.

    • ‘wonky political junkies who spend Saturday afternoons commenting on blogs’
    • ‘wonky discussions about healthcare became part of the debate’
    • ‘"Gross domestic product" sounds wonky, and it lacks apparent relevance to American households interested in job stability, income growth, and quality of life.’
    • ‘He did what he has done at most debates: provide solid, if slightly wonky, answers to every question.’
    • ‘He appeared to revel in the wonky, fiscal wonderland of his own making.’
    • ‘It's one line that could easily be buried as very wonky and technical, but to me, this was the smoking gun moment.’
    • ‘I'm a politics-Spanish major, I like wonky politicians.’
    • ‘They don't publish articles often, but they are full of the wonky stuff that I love to read.’
    • ‘Housing starts, job data and other market indexes are important to tell the story of the economy but can get a bit wonky.’
    • ‘Throughout the primary campaign, she embraced her wonky image.’
    • ‘The questions were at turns highly partisan, wonky and leading.’
    • ‘We provide the tools for people to decode convoluted policy talk, empowering them to see through wonky speech and lofty promises intended to secure votes rather than good outcomes.’
    1. 1.1 derogatory Studious or hard-working.
      • ‘his glasses defined him as a wonky nerd’
      • ‘He calls himself a wonky, dorky travel guy.’
      • ‘If you're wonky enough to geek out on the mechanics between plays, then you'll be entertained for a majority of the broadcast.’
      • ‘The wonky group earned the nickname "the Nerd Caucus".’
      • ‘He is a private, wonky and introverted guy.’
      • ‘This program is awesome for wonky nerds like me.’
      • ‘He is proud to be a pointy headed, wonky geek.’
      • ‘The wonky geek in me needed to see this as a graph.’
      • ‘It may be exciting to wonky dorks with calculator watches, but the rest of us have games to play.’
      • ‘He was unapologetically wonky and one of the first players to embrace advanced analytics in pursuit of self-improvement.’
      • ‘Our wonky geek got transformed into a cool guy.’

Pronunciation

wonky

/ˈwäNGkē/ /ˈwɑŋki/

Origin

1970s from wonk + -y.