oily

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the smell of an oily rag

A very meager, slim, or frugal amount of resources, especially money or fuel. As in the phrases "live off/on the smell of an oily rag" or "run off/on the smell of an oily rag," respectively. Primarily heard in Australia, New Zealand. I spent a year travelling abroad, and I lived on the smell of an oily rag to get by. This trusty little car may not look like much, but she runs on the smell of an oily rag.
See also: of, oily, rag, smell

run off smell of an oily rag

Of a motor vehicle, to operate with exceptionally good fuel efficiency. Primarily heard in Australia, New Zealand. This trusty little car may not look like much, but she runs off the smell of an oily rag.
See also: of, off, oily, rag, run, smell

run on the smell of an oily rag

Of a motor vehicle, to operate with exceptionally good fuel efficiency. Primarily heard in Australia, New Zealand. This trusty little car may not look like much, but she runs on the smell of an oily rag.
See also: of, oily, on, rag, run, smell

live off smell of an oily rag

To live very frugally, economically, or sparingly; to survive with very meager resources. Primarily heard in Australia, New Zealand. I spent a year travelling abroad, and I lived off smell of an oily rag to get by. We're going to have to live off smell of an oily rag now that we have a fourth baby on the way.
See also: live, of, off, oily, rag, smell

live on the smell of an oily rag

To live very frugally, economically, or sparingly; to survive with very meager resources. Primarily heard in Australia, New Zealand. I spent a year travelling abroad, and I lived on the smell of an oily rag to get by. We're going to have to live on the smell of an oily rag now that we have a fourth baby on the way.
See also: live, of, oily, on, rag, smell
References in periodicals archive ?
very oiliest of skin and is favoured by Gisele, Kylie and Cat Deeley.
He is the Tory bigwig who wrote the House of Cards trilogy, which was turned into a hit television series starring Ian Richardson as Francis Urquhart, the oiliest, creepiest politician of them all.
5] vvCvvCC OILIEST vvCvCCv AUDIBLE vvCCvvC AUCTION vvCCCvv * AINTREE vvCCCCC EIGHTH[S.
It is the oiliest of the Chinese styles, and the only one that occasionally cooks foods slowly.
resonated throughout the world when the oiliest Ewing took two bullets at the close of the 1979-80 season.
As one of the oiliest of our GOM peer group, notably in the range of 70%, we are uniquely positioned in this oil price advantaged commodity market to provide substantial value to our shareholders.
Although L'entrecote's Lemon Vanilla was the freshest we've eaten, it was also the oiliest we've tried, leaving us feeling a little nauseous.
And in spite of Hughie Green being TV's oiliest, most transparently insincere presenter (although his catchphrase was "But sincerely folks.
The pm hours indicate "plus" skins, the oiliest being a 3pm.
Powder soaks up oil, so you need to apply it on your skin's oiliest areas (the T-zone: forehead, nose and chin).