play it straight

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play it straight

To do something in a completely serious, straightforward manner, without any kind of jocosity, foolishness, duplicity, deception, etc. I started dating Samantha because I loved her sense of humor and her chilled out manner, but I wish she would play it straight with me about what she thinks about our relationship. I'm tired of playing it straight; from now on, if there's an easy way to make a buck, I'm going to exploit it!
See also: play, straight

play it ˈstraight

(also play a straight ˈbat) be honest and not try to deceive somebody: ‘Do you think we should try and hide this from the newspapers?’ ‘No, play it straight; I’m sure the public will see our point of view.’These idioms refer to one way of holding the bat in the game of cricket.
See also: play, straight