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stalking horse

1. A political candidate who attempts to supplant the current party leader, solely to gauge how much support the incumbent has. He doesn't actually want to be elected—he's just a stalking horse who's trying to see how fractured our party really is.
2. Something that conceals a person's true intentions. I'm afraid that this deal is just a stalking horse for a more nefarious long-term plan.
See also: horse, stalk

(one's) eyes are out on stalks

1. One is looking at someone in a way that indicates sexual interest. Of course he likes you—his eyes are out on stalks every time he sees you!
2. One is looking at something with wonder or awe. My brother loves superhero movies, so his eyes will definitely be out on stalks when he sees the trailer for this one.
See also: eye, on, out, stalk

stalk in(to some place)

to stride into a place, perhaps indignantly. Carl stalked into the manager's office and began his tirade. He stalked in and began to complain.
See also: stalk

stalk out of

some place to stride out of a place indignantly. Jeff stalked out of the store and went straight to the police. Mary got angry and stalked out of the meeting.
See also: of, out, stalk

a stalking horse

1. If you describe an event or an action as a stalking horse, you mean that it is being used to help someone get what they really want at a later date. The development will act as a stalking horse for further exploitation of the surrounding countryside. Limits on union contributions will be a stalking horse to break the relationship between the party and the unions. Note: This expression is usually used to show disapproval.
2. In politics, a stalking horse is someone who stands against the leader of a party to test the strength of any opposition to the leader. They then withdraw in favour of a stronger challenger, if it looks likely that the leader can be defeated. There was even talk of one of them standing for the leadership as a stalking horse for the real contender. Note: You can also use stalking horse before a noun. The notion of a stalking horse challenge at the autumn party conference seemed highly unlikely. Note: Stalking horses were horses that were used by hunters. They were trained to allow their rider to hide behind them, and so get closer to the birds they were hunting.
See also: horse, stalk

eyes out on stalks

full of eager curiosity or amazement. informal
1999 Escape This breathtaking graphics accelerator takes 3D game play on PCI systems to a whole new dimension of excitement with imagery so realistic your eyes will be out on stalks.
See also: eye, on, out, stalk
References in periodicals archive ?
Among those characteristics, compression, tension, bending, density and friction are the most significant ones influencing the harvest of corn stalks.
Results: The veins, skin, and leaves of the celery stalks absorbed water.
Most of us know that celery stalks contain a lot of water, but it may surprise you to know that 94 percent of a celery stalk is water.
I can also look back on most of my unsuccessful stalks and point out where a lack of patience caused me to blow it.
These variables were stalk weight, number of millable stalks/[m.
While in the ground, you'll see thin, celery-like stalks growing from the rounded top of the edible root.
However, the results of the Morgan (2009) study also suggest that the nuisance stalker, as proposed by Roberts and Dziegielewski (2006) may also account for a significant proportion of students who stalk their professors.
The Tiwest Night Stalk is an annual nationwide spotlight survey, an important community-based program that is very much education oriented.
MAIZE PLANTS initiate axillary meristems on most nodes of the main stalk, but many potential ear shoots abort during plant development, resulting in one or two grain-filled ears in most commercial hybrids (Sass and Loeffel, 1959).
2]) represent the percentage of variation in plant weight that was accounted for by the three plant weight components, number of stalks per plant, stalk length, and stalk diameter.
The purpose of the reel was to lay the hemp stalks evenly on the reaper's table, where they were gathered and evenly swept to the ground.
Add bok choy stalks and stir-fry until slightly softened, about 2 minutes.
Therefore, this study investigates the effect of recycling on jute and cotton stalk pulps, which are potential raw materials in Bangladesh.
A stalk should end slowly and cautiously, but it should get off to a quick start.
1989) were much shorter and smaller in diameter than typical sunflower stalks, but the characteristics of the actual sunflower residue used by Lyles and Allison (1981) were similar to some of the field residues used in this experiment (height = 43 cm, diameter = 1.