From the movie Goodfellas:

A woman shows her two friends her new home.

Woman: Four and a half months of dirt.

One of her friends: It's so good.

Woman: I did it. Do you love it?

Her friend: Oh it's beautiful.

It seems "dirt" possibly means "hard work", but it doesn't have such a definition in dictionaries. The closest definition is "filth". Is "dirt" here a slang usage?

  • 1
    Dirt in these contexts is usually information collected on a person, which can be used for blackmailing them. One collects dirt.
    – Lambie
    Commented Apr 29, 2018 at 16:22

1 Answer 1


It's difficult to tell what the meaning might be without a proper clip showing the full context. While @Lambie is right that "dirt" in a gangster movie usually means compromising information, I think in this context it simply means struggle and inconvenience and could have been rephrased as

Four and a half months of construction site

since it seems to be a new house that's being shown. The dialogue goes on to point out various accoutrements within the house that are noteworthy.

  • 1
    +1 The snippet of dialog included in the question is actually everything there is. It is the start of a new scene, so there is nothing before the line with "dirt". And what follows, as you have said, is some bells and whistles of the house.
    – Eddie Kal
    Commented Apr 29, 2018 at 18:23
  • Then, the house has been under construction for four months.
    – Lambie
    Commented Apr 29, 2018 at 23:37
  • Yes, as in "I had to put up with four and a half months of dirt (and filth and dust and irritation) to get this" which may not seem long, but if you are essentially the construction company (the mob) can be forever especially for the wife.
    – Peter
    Commented Apr 30, 2018 at 5:22
  • These types of things used to be called: You hadda be there. Cheers.
    – Lambie
    Commented Apr 30, 2018 at 12:21

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