Play Russian Roulette

Meaning of Idiom ‘Play Russian Roulette’ To play Russian roulette means to take very large, unpredictable and dangerous risks, potentially fatal; performing any action which, if repeated several times, is likely to have disastrous consequences. 1Heacock, Paul. Cambridge Dictionary of American Idioms]. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2010., 2Jarvie, Gordon. Bloomsbury Dictionary of Idioms. London: Bloomsbury, 2009.,3McCarthy, … Read more

Pluck Up Courage

Also: Screw Up Courage Meaning of Idiom ‘Pluck Up (one’s) Courage’ To pluck up one’s courage means to force or will oneself to overcome fear or to be brave; to bolster one’s courage. 1Heacock, Paul. Cambridge Dictionary of American Idioms]. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2010.,2Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.,3Spears, … Read more

Play It By Ear

Also: Play Something By Ear Meaning of Idiom ‘Play it By Ear’ 1. To play it by ear means to deal with a situation as it unfolds without a definite plan; to make changes or decisions and proceed gradually as a situation demands, without planning out one’s responses in advance; to improvise.  Want to … Read more

Play Second Fiddle

Meaning of Idiom ‘Play Second Fiddle’ To play second fiddle to someone is to be subordinate to them; to be of lesser importance. Usage “I’ve been with this company twenty years. I’m not going to play second fiddle to a kid just out of college.” “Dr. Watson always seemed to play second fiddle to Sherlock Holmes but … Read more

Play Fast And Lose (with someone or something)

Meaning of Idiom ‘Play Fast and Loose’ To play fast and loose with something or someone is to do what one wants in a careless, irresponsible, thoughtless, deceitful or immoral way. Usage The expression is almost always followed by the word with and an object. Often, the object is “the truth” as in “he was known for playing fast … Read more