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1. noun, vulgar slang A thoroughly incompetent, foolish, bumbling, or useless person. I can't believe that jerk off got elected to the Senate! Get off the road before you kill someone, jerk off!
2. verb, vulgar slang To masturbate or bring someone to orgasm, especially a male.
3. verb, vulgar slang To waste or pass time idly or by doing nothing or engaging in foolish behavior. Would you quit jerkin' off and help me move this sofa out to the truck?
jerk (one's) chain
To tease someone, often by trying to convince them of something untrue. Quit jerking my chain, I know there isn't a Hollywood director calling me right now. I love jerking my sister's chain—it's almost too easy to annoy her.
1. To send away; to force to retreat. Despite the connotation of "beat," this phrase is often used hyperbolically and does not have to reference violent action. Because their house is in such a great location, they have been beating off a lot of interested buyers. I somehow managed to beat off the intruder with a baseball bat. Your daughter is so pretty—it's only a matter of time until she's beating off the suitors!
2. vulgar slang To masturbate. Typically said of males. A: "Why is he all embarrassed today?" B: "Oh, his crush walked in on him beating off. How horrifying is that?"
1. rude slang To waste or pass time idly or by doing nothing or engaging in foolish behavior. Stop jerking around and start cleaning this place up—my parents will be home soon!
2. rude slang To tease someone, often by trying to convince them of something untrue. In this usage, a noun or pronoun is sometimes used between "jerk" and "around." Quit jerking me around, I know there isn't a Hollywood director calling me right now.
3. rude slang To waste someone's time, often by being indirect. In this usage, a noun or pronoun is sometimes used between "jerk" and "around." I don't understand why they didn't just tell me no right away. Instead, they jerked me around for three weeks when I could have been looking for other jobs.
put a jerk in it
old-fashioned Hurry up; act more lively or quickly. Put a jerk in it, gentlemen, we don't have much time to get this finished!
dated An attendant at a drug store who would prepare and serve flavored carbonated beverages ("sodas"). The "jerk" part of the phrase is a pun on "clerk," and the jerking motion of the soda fountain spigots while pouring. Popular in the lead up to the 1940s–50s, when drugstores sold food and drinks from behind a counter. Back when I was your age, I had to work as a soda jerk every day of the week in order to afford my first car. The retro-themed café even had a section meant to resemble an old-timey drugstore, complete with a soda jerk and soda fountain!
beat someone or something off
to drive someone or something away by beating. They beat the enemy off. The army beat off the savage attack, saving the town. I was able to beat off the intruder.
jack aroundand jerk around
sl. to waste time. Stop jacking around and get some work done! The kids spend most of the day jerking around.
jack someone aroundand jerk someone around
Sl. to give someone a difficult time; to harass someone. Come on! Stop jacking me around! Max started jerking Lefty around, and it looked as if there was going to be trouble. You jack around everyone you know!
jerk someone aroundand jerk someone over
to hassle someone; to waste someone's time. Stop jerking me around and give me my money back. They sure like to jerk around people in that music shop.
jerk someone or something out of somethingand jerk someone or something out
to pull someone or something out of something sharply and quickly. She jerked the baby out of the crib and ran from the burning room. I jerked the puppy out of the mud. She jerked out the puppy before it got soaked.
jerk something away (from someone, something, or an animal)
to snatch something away or quickly pull something back from someone or an animal. I jerked the bone away from the dog. Kelly jerked the ant poison away from the child. Mary jerked her hand away from the fire.
jerk something off (of) someone or somethingand jerk something off
to snatch or quickly pull something off someone or something. (Of is usually retained before pronouns.) Alice jerked the top off the box and poured out the contents. She jerked off the box top.
jerk something out of someone or somethingand jerk something out
to pull something out of someone or something quickly. The doctor jerked the arrow out of Bill's leg. He jerked out the arrow.
jerk something up
1. to pull something up quickly. He jerked his belt up tight. He jerked up the zipper to his jacket.
2. to lift up something, such as ears, quickly. The dog jerked its ears up. The dog jerked up its ears when it heard the floor creak. The soldier jerked his binoculars up to try to see the sniper.
Fig. an automatic or reflex reaction; an immediate reaction made without examining causes or facts. With one of his typical knee-jerk reactions, he said no immediately, citing some moral argument that no one understood.
See also: reaction
Repulse, drive away by blows, as in We tried to beat off the flying ants swarming about us. Originating in the mid-1600s in a military context, this term was being used for other activities by the mid-1700s.
Take unfair advantage of, manipulate or deceive, as in Leave me alone; quit jerking me around! or He was jerking you around when he said he was home all evening. [Slang; mid-1900s]
Also, jack off. Masturbate, as in His roommate was always jerking off. [ Vulgar slang; first half of 1900s]
put a jerk in itact vigorously, smartly, or quickly. informal, dated
1939 C. Day Lewis Child of Misfortune Put a jerk in it. I'm meeting my boy at the second house at the Royal.
1. To drive someone or something away, especially by fighting or hitting: Two robbers attacked me on the subway, but I beat them off with my bag. After a long battle, the soldiers beat off the invaders.
2. To defeat someone or something in a competition: Our company intends to beat off our rivals for the contract. The visiting team was behind us for most of the game, but beat us off squarely in the end.
3. Vulgar Slang To masturbate. Used of males.
1. Slang To waste time: They jerked around for hours instead of doing their homework.
2. To take unfair advantage of someone, especially by deception or manipulation: Don't jerk me around; tell me what's going on. The con artist jerked around the unsuspecting tourists at the carnival.
v. Vulgar Slang
To masturbate. Used chiefly of males.
beat offand ball off and jack off and jag off and jerk off and pull oneself off and toss off and wack off and wank off and whack off and whank off and whip off
1. in. to masturbate. (Usually objectionable.) They say if you beat off too much, you’ll get pimples.
2. in. to waste time; to waste one’s efforts; to do something inefficiently. The whole lot of them were jacking off rather than sticking to business. Stop whanking off and get on with your work!
See beat off
1. n. a gathering of males performing mutual masturbation. (Partly jocular. Usually objectionable.) There were twelve boys involved in a circle-jerk, and the principal caught them.
2. n. a boring or time-wasting meeting. (From sense 1) That board meeting was the typical circle-jerk that it always is.
in. to waste time; to mess around. (Akin to jack off.) Stop jacking around and get busy.
n. a stupid or worthless person. (Now both males and females.) You are such a classic jerk!
in. to waste time. All you do is jerk around. Get a move on!
in. to masturbate. (see also beat off. Usually objectionable.) That kid spends all his time jerking off.
jerk someone aroundand jerk someone over
tv. to hassle someone; to waste someone’s time. Stop jerking me around and give me my money back! We jerked him over for a while, but he still wouldn’t come across.
jerk someone oververb
n. the delirium tremens. The old guy has the jerks.
See also: jerk
mod. automatic; quick and without thought. That was only a knee-jerk response. Pay no attention.
Drug store counterman. Those of us old enough to remember when pharmacies sold nothing but medicine and medications, magazines and comic books, candy, and soda fountain treats, a man behind the zinc-and-marble counter made and dispensed sodas, frappes, milkshakes, malteds, and other ice cream–based concoctions, as well as banana splits, Cokes, lime rickeys, and dozens of other refreshments. He was the soda jerk, the name coming from the fountain dispensers with handles that he jerked down to pour seltzer and other soft drinks. For some unclear reason, women weren't soda jerks.