This is a passage taken from an article:

My last job was in an air-conditioned office in a business park in Woburn, Mass., as a draftsman designing laboratories. It was like being a kitchen designer but even more boring. Every day I went into work I contemplated suicide. Was this to be the rest of my life? I finally got fired, the combination of poor job performance, a ruined economy and good old-fashioned New England insularity.

What does good mean in the sentence I bolded above?

1 Answer 1


Good old-fashioned is a common collocation (as is good old almost-anything) signifying approval of old-fashioned ways of doing things.

In this case, obviously, the phrase is used ironically: the author intends us to understand that his New England employers regarded their insularity as admirable adherence to local values, but the author himself regards it quite differently.

  • I'm guessing the old in good old-fashioned is omitted, otherwise it would be good old old-fashioned?
    – Theo
    Mar 14, 2014 at 21:26
  • @theo it's already there, before the hyphen :) ... But good old is usually reduced in speech to "good ol'" /'gʊdoʊl/, so you'll hear good ol' ol'-fashun a lot. Mar 14, 2014 at 21:33
  • Good old Stoney; always coming up with the goods.
    – BobRodes
    Mar 14, 2014 at 21:35
  • @BobRodes Goody goody for me. Mar 14, 2014 at 21:36

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