catch-as-catch-can definition by American Heritage Dictionary
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Using or making do with whatever means are available; irregular: made a catch-as-catch-can living doing odd jobs.adverb
However or by whatever means possible: “Reading was learned catch-as-catch-can, while reindeer farming was learned deeply and thoroughly through the daily rigors of survival” (Bunny McBride).
catch-as-catch-can - Cultural Definition
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
A phrase that describes a situation in which people must improvise or do what they can with limited means: “We don't have enough textbooks for all of the students, so it'll be catch-as-catch-can.”
catch-as-catch-can - Phrases/Idioms
By whatever means or in any way possible, as in There was no formal language program; one simply learned Spanish catch as catch can. This term, in slightly varying versions but with the same meaning, dates from the late 1300s.