don't take any wooden nickels

accept a wooden nickel

To accept something that proves to be fraudulent or deceitful; to be swindled or conned. Primarily heard in US. I'm done accepting wooden nickels—capricious women who say they love me, then get bored and decide I'm not worth their time. My husband is a wonderful man, but he has about as much business sense as a grade-schooler. If I had let him accept all the wooden nickels offered flaky customers have tried to peddle on us, we'd have gone bankrupt years ago.
See also: accept, nickel, wooden

don't take any wooden nickels

Take care and, specifically, try not to get swindled. The phrase is thought to have originated in the early 20th century when country residents visiting the city were considered easily duped. Primarily heard in US. Have fun tonight and don't take any wooden nickels!
See also: any, nickel, take, wooden

accept a wooden nickel

be fooled or swindled. US
A wooden nickel is a worthless or counterfeit coin.
See also: accept, nickel, wooden

don’t take any wooden ˈnickels

(American English) used when saying goodbye to somebody to mean ‘be careful’, ‘take care of yourself’: Well, see you around Tom. Don’t take any wooden nickels.
See also: any, nickel, take, wooden

Don't take any wooden nickels

Don't let yourself be cheated. This expression was first heard in the early 20th century. Although there never were any wooden nickels as legal tender, country folk going to a city were likely to be cheated by all manner of ruses, including obviously counterfeit coins. Wooden nickels did exist, however, as bank promotions during and after the Great Depression; the “coins” were redeemable for prizes.
See also: any, nickel, take, wooden
References in periodicals archive ?
Added Costas: ``And wash behind your ears and don't take any wooden nickels - word to the wise, my friends.
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