keg

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powder keg

A situation that could quickly become very volatile and dangerous. It became obvious we were sitting on a powder keg as the protests in the city became more frequent.
See also: keg, powder

sitting on a powder keg

Fig. in a risky or explosive situation; in a situation where something serious or dangerous may happen at any time. (A powder keg is a keg of gunpowder.) Things are very tense at work. The whole office is sitting on a powder keg. The fire at the oilfield seems to be under control for now, but all the workers there are sitting on a powder keg.
See also: keg, on, powder, sitting

sitting on a powder keg

In imminent danger, in an explosive situation, as in Our office is sitting on a powder keg while management decides whether or not to close us down . This metaphoric term alludes to sitting on a keg of gunpowder that could go off at any moment. [First half of 1900s]
See also: keg, on, powder, sitting

a powder keg

A powder keg is a very dangerous situation or place in which something very bad could happen at any time. His imprisonment is a political powder keg. The region has long been regarded as the powder keg of Europe. Note: You can say that someone is sitting on a powder keg if they are in a very dangerous situation. The Prime Minister was all too aware that he was sitting on a powder keg which could explode at any moment. Note: A powder keg was a small barrel which was used to store gunpowder.
See also: keg, powder

keg

n. a beer belly. If you didn’t drink so much beer, you wouldn’t have such a keg.

keg party

n. a party where liquor, especially beer, is served. The keg party ended early owing to the arrival of uninvited nabs.
See also: keg, party

sitting on a powder keg

In imminent danger. This phrase that arose in the early 19th century (if not before) suggests being atop a barrel of gunpowder that could explode at any time.
See also: keg, on, powder, sitting
References in periodicals archive ?
Keg Logistics is a supplier of keg leases to craft breweries, an end-market that analysts hope to double in the coming 5 years.
The kegs were also were without dust caps and the two Kronenberg barrels bore counterfeit labels.
The majority of kegs were stolen by organised gangs and melted down.
Last year, the Hereford-based business won an international design award for its plastic kegs.
While also retrofitting its current beer keg inventory with EPC Gen 2 passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID tags, the firm is now rolling the system out to incorporate all new kegs bought to containerize beer, based on the outcomes of that installation.
The problem has escalated as scrap keg values increase.
Las Vegas illusionists Siegfried Fischbacher and Roy Horn, better known as Siegfried and Roy, heralded the Oktoberfest season last September at the Hofbrauhaus Las Vegas, where they tapped the first keg of Hofbrau Oktoberfestbier.
Correct me if I am wrong, but I imagine the trucks simply offload the kegs down some form of conveyor into the pub cellar.
Beer in these kegs has been available for a number of years with brands such as DAB, Bitburger and Grolsch, but in the last 12 months a number of major brands have been launched in the format.
Packaging wine in stainless steel kegs for restaurant use is standard practice in Europe and is gaining ground in other states.
has announced the development of a new one-way keg: the KeyKeg 30 Slimline, a cylindrical 30-liter keg fitted with both the KeyKeg Double Wall and Bag-in-Ball technologies.
Paster will always serve either bottled beer or bottled beer into kegs.
Britain's biggest keg supplier TrenStar says it is being forced to put up its charges because so many kegs go missing.
Dispositions of substantially all of the transferred corporation's assets, which are generally treated as deemed dispositions of the transferred corporation's stock or securities; see Kegs.
The move comes after almost 1,000 kegs of Ireland's most famous export had to be replaced in the past few weeks following a series of complaints from drinkers.