The gathering/party was a [flop]

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Siavash2015, Feb 8, 2016.

  1. Siavash2015

    Siavash2015 Senior Member

    Dear teachers,

    I know that "flop" means a failure. And we use it to talk about a movie and product but I was wondering if this word is exclusive to "product" and" movie" would it make sense to use it in the following sentence?
    I want to say the gathering, party, football game sucked.

    1:The gathering/party was a real flop.
    2: the football game was a flop.

    BLUEGLAZE Senior Member

    English - USA
    For the party, yes you can say 'flop'.
    In general you would not use it with a football game unless the game were organized to raise funds for some cause.
    If the game then did not attract enough people to make it worth the effort, then it can be called a flop.
  3. bennymix

    bennymix Senior Member

    "flop" implies lack of success in the stated goal. A spontaneous street party cannot flop. A 1000-dollar-a-plate dinner to raise funds
    for Jeb Bush can be a "flop" or "flop" if few people buy tickets and show up.
  4. Siavash2015

    Siavash2015 Senior Member

    Many thanks to both of you for your amazing explanations.
    One more question:

    Say I went out with some of my friends on a picnic or trekking to have fun in the weekend but some of the guys forgot to bring along enough food, warm clothing and even tent and it rained heavily and we got muddy and socked to the skin that day so, the trekking/picnic sucked.

    Can I say " the picnic, trekking was a flop"?

    BLUEGLAZE Senior Member

    English - USA
    No. It just sucked. Because it was organized to go out and have fun I can see why you want to say it was a flop.
    "Flop" seems to come in when money is involved and not enough was gathered, collected or brought in.
  6. Parla Member Emeritus

    New York City
    English - US
    If it was a planned event that all the guys were looking forward to and planning for, and things turned out as you describe: Yes, I think you can call it a flop.

    P.S.: It's soaked, not "socked", to the skin.
  7. Siavash2015

    Siavash2015 Senior Member

    Thanks everyone for contributing.
    So, I can use "flop" when a planned event turns out to be sucky.
  8. bennymix

    bennymix Senior Member

    The point Siavash is that 'flop' references intended purpose. Most parties are for fun, and are arranged for that. If no one has fun, then in a general sense the party is a flop. However if I throw a party so that two single friends Jack and Jill may meet and chat, and somehow this does not happen--Joe talks only to his male buddies-- then afterwards I will think "The party was a flop: J & J never met and chatted."

    I was at a party to raise funds for a young man's medical treatment; it was given by his mom. IF that party didn't yield much because its expenses consumed all the donations, then that mom would consider the party a flop.
  9. Siavash2015

    Siavash2015 Senior Member

    Thank you very much sir.
    As always you've given a nice explanation.
  10. Parla Member Emeritus

    New York City
    English - US
    I disagree with Blueglaze's apparent assumption (post #5) that to call an event a "flop" is related to money being involved, whether collecting money for admission or asking those attending for donations to some cause—i.e., that if insufficient income is achieved, the event is a flop.

    To my mind, if an event is planned in advance in some detail, such as the weekend camping trip described in post #4, or a gathering specifically organized to bring certain people together (post #8), or a holiday party with special food and decorations—and then people neglect trip essentials, or those the couple don't get together, or the food preparation goes sour (respectively at the three different events): I certainly think the event can be called a flop.

    I don't think money has to be involved. I think it has to do with advance planning and whether or not the intended objective was achieved. That could be, but need not be, money.
  11. Siavash2015

    Siavash2015 Senior Member

    Thank you very much for your kind help:)
    Thanks a bunch Parla. You've dispelled my confusion on many threads.
  12. dojibear

    dojibear Senior Member

    Fresno CA
    English - Northeast US
    Despite all the details above, it is quite common in AE to say that any party "was a flop". I've heard that for more than 50 years.

    Meaning simply that it was disappointing. Nobody was having much fun.

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