Say a person is willing to spend hours standing in line just for some useless freebie, or spend hours negotiating a one dollar discount on a 100-dollar product, or things like that, and be very happy about it.

What is the adjective or term for the person with such behavior, if there is one?

  • I'm afraid there is no one word. Not even in my native language where we have separate terms for almost everything under the sun!
    – Maulik V
    Commented Aug 1, 2018 at 5:11

1 Answer 1


Your initial question used two very good adjectives: petty and trivial, so good job! I would add niggling, piddling, penny-ante, and picayune. The last two have interesting sources and histories.

He's always niggling over small details.

Of those, only four rather piddling victories went the liberals’ way. — The Economist, "Justice Kennedy is retiring. What happens now?," 30 June 2018


...Dole had become mired in the " nit-picking and penny ante politics " of partisan budget battles and was pitting himself against Senate Democrats while Clinton stood above the battle.

I didn't want to seem picayune by criticizing.

Other words that come to my mind are neurotic, spendthrift, and cheesy. These have differences in personal judgment of the character of the person, namely a little bit crazy or "off" for neurotic; cheap and miserly with money for "spendthrift," and of poor quality taste and character for "cheesy."

He seemed a neurotic, self-obsessed character.

The spendthrift managed to blow all of his inheritance in a single year.

Cheesy plastic knickknacks lined the fireplace mantel.


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