“Diana Rigg was so brave – and she was A HOOT. Camparis at three every day.”
Tim Adams - The Guardian (16 Jan 2022)
to be a hoot
- to be very funny
- something or someone amusing
The Cambridge Dictionary / Merriam-Webster
“Hoot” is from around 1200 and still retains its original meaning “to call or shout in disapproval or scorn”. It’s related to the Middle English houten/huten, also meaning to "shout or call out".
The first use of "hoot" in the sense of bird cries, especially that of the owl (Eulenruf), is from around 1450.
The now common noun-phrase meaning “something or someone amusing” was first recorded 1942.
Hoot is also part of the common idiom “to not give a hoot”, which means to show no concern or interest: “I don’t give a hoot what she thinks!” or “He doesn’t care two hoots about getting to work on time.”
WHAT A HOOT!
The probability of your being hit by a meteorite is incredibly low. Most are very small in size and only about 5% make it to the earth’s surface. It’s estimated that the chance of being hit by a meteor is one in 840,000,000.
So the odds would seem incredibly small that a meteor—which had been flying through space for more than four-and-a-half billion years without hitting a target—would hit the home of a family with the last name “Commette”.
In a bizarre case of cosmic coincidence, that is exactly what happened to a Paris family in October 2011. Thankfully, no one was hurt, and the Commettes are now the proud owners of their own extremely rare, egg-shaped, extra-terrestrial rock weighing 88 grams.
Kim Willsher- The Guardian (10 October 2011)
for an amusing person:
animator, banterer, barrel of laughs, buffoon, card, clown, comedian, comedienne, comedy actor/actress, comic, comic artist, court jester, funny girl, funny man, funster, gagger, gagster, hard case, HOOT, humourist, illustrator, impressionist, japer, jester, jestress, joculator, joker, jokesmith, jokester, josher, kidder, knee-slapper, lampooner, larker, life of the party, merry-andrew, merrymaker, million laughs, practical joker, prankster, punner, punster, quipster, satirist, stand-up comic, wisecracker, wit
SMUGGLE OWAD into an English conversation, say something like:
“You’ll enjoy working with the new sales manager. She’s a real HOOT!”
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