paddle

(redirected from paddles)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to paddles: Paddle tennis

paddle one's own canoe

Fig. to do something by oneself; to be alone. I've been left to paddle my own canoe too many times. Sally isn't with us. She's off paddling her own canoe.
See also: canoe, paddle

paddle your own canoe

  (informal)
to be independent and not need help from anyone else We hoped that after he left college he'd paddle his own canoe.
See also: canoe, paddle

paddle one's own canoe

Be independent and self-reliant, as in It's time Bill learned to paddle his own canoe. This idiom alludes to steering one's own boat. [c. 1800]
See also: canoe, paddle

up a creek

Also, up shit creek; up the creek (without a paddle). In trouble, in a serious predicament, as in If the check doesn't arrive today I'm up a creek, or The car wouldn't start, so I was up the creek without a paddle. This slangy idiom conjures up the image of a stranded canoeist with no way of moving (paddling) the canoe. President Harry S. Truman used the first term in a letter in 1918. The first variant is considered vulgar.
See also: creek, up

up shit creek (without a paddle)

and up the creek (without a paddle) and up a creek
mod. in an awkward position with no easy way out. (Usually objectionable.) There I was, at Disney World with only a measly $47.54. I was literally up the creek without a paddle. You are up a creek! You got yourself into it, so get yourself out.
See also: creek, paddle, shit, up, without

up the creek without a paddle

verb
See also: creek, paddle, up, without

up a creek

verb
See also: creek, up
References in classic literature ?
The imps have put all their strength again at the paddles, and we are to struggle for our scalps with bits of flattened wood, instead of clouded barrels and true eyes.
Drawn up on the beach below me were a score of similar boats, each with its long pole, at one end of which was a pike, at the other a paddle.
Then I grasped the paddle, and with feverish haste urged the awkward, wobbly thing out upon the surface of the sea.
A warrior rose from his knees, threw his paddle aloft, stiffened into rigidity for an instant, and then toppled overboard.
The next few days Tarzan devoted to the weaving of a barkcloth sail with which to equip the canoe, for he despaired of being able to teach the apes to wield the paddles, though he did manage to get several of them to embark in the frail craft which he and Mugambi paddled about inside the reef where the water was quite smooth.
Came the sound of paddles, and, next, emerging into the lantern's area of light, the high, black bow of a war canoe, curved like a gondola, inlaid with silvery-glistening mother-of-pearl; the long lean length of the canoe which was without outrigger; the shining eyes and the black-shining bodies of the stark blacks who knelt in the bottom and paddled; Ishikola, the old chief, squatting amidships and not paddling, an unlighted, empty-bowled, short-stemmed clay pipe upside-down between his toothless gums; and, in the stern, as coxswain, the dandy, all nakedness of blackness, all whiteness of decoration, save for the pig's tail in one ear and the scarlet hibiscus that still flamed over the other ear.
The steersman dug his paddle into the stream, and held hard with stiffened arms, his body thrown forward.
Well, now," thought I to myself, "it is plain I must lie where I am and not disturb the balance; but it is plain also that I can put the paddle over the side and from time to time, in smooth places, give her a shove or two towards land.
He was standing in front of him, his paddle in one hand, asking Baynes where he was hit when there was another shot from shore and the Negro pitched head long overboard, his paddle still clutched in his dead fingers--shot through the forehead.
There were no oars in the boat, but I contrived to paddle, as well as my parboiled hands would allow, down the river towards Halliford and Walton, going very tediously and continually looking behind me, as you may well under- stand.
At the farther end of the vessel a form was faintly seen, guiding its motions, and using a paddle with the ease of one who felt there was no necessity for exertion.
When he sails, he sits down, but he stands up to paddle.
Then he straightened out and began laboriously to paddle nearer and nearer.
The ancient obediently dipped his paddle and started pottering an erratic course in the general direction of the cluster of lights that marked the Makambo.
The wedges in the paddle lashing worked loose, and she lost much time, at frequent intervals, in driving them tight.