a corporate stain


Senior Member
Which word would you use to replace "stain" in "a corporate stain"?

Here's a passage from Douglas Kennedy:

"Though I wasn't pulling down his million-nine per annum, I was making somewhere in the high six figures. Because, like Todd, I too was a corporate stain -- a lawyer, specialising in mergers and acquisitions -- and, as my husband was fond of telling everyone, someone who was even more hard-nosed than he was."

From looking at the dictionary entry for "stain" I couldn't figure out if stain meant "corrupt" or what. The context doesn't suggest she was a corrupt corporate employee.
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    We talk about stain as a blot or blemish on something, such a reputation. In this case, it would be a corporation (or more generally, the entire matter of business).

    Matching Mole

    Senior Member
    England, English
    I presume it means something like "taint"; something that is discreditable, "dirty" or low. It's used as a disapproving or contemptuous epithet. The writer has a very low opinion of corporate lawyers of this type, and of himself as having been one.
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