sting

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sting in the tail

A disappointing ending to something, such as a story, that is otherwise upbeat and positive. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. The movie began as a sweet, romantic love story, so the tragic ending was an unexpected sting in the tail.
See also: sting, tail

sting someone for something

Sl. to cheat someone of a particular amount; to make someone pay for something. That guy stung me for twenty bucks! Toby was stung for the lunch bill.
See also: sting

sting someone with something

to use something to sting someone. The bee stung me with its stinger. The wasp can sting you with its poisonous barb.
See also: sting

take the sting out of something

to slightly improve something that is unpleasant It was a difficult loss, but the support of the fans really took the sting out of it.
See also: of, out, sting, take

a sting in the tail

  (British & Australian)
an unpleasant end to something that began pleasantly, especially a story or suggestion At the start, it's humorous and light but like most of her short stories, there's a sting in the tail.
See also: sting, tail

take the sting out of something

to make something that is unpleasant a little less unpleasant Humour, of course, can take the sting out of almost any unpleasant situation.
See also: of, out, sting, take

take the sting out of

Lessen the severity or unpleasantness of something, as in That senior citizen discount took the sting out of the airfares. [Mid-1800s]
See also: of, out, sting, take

sting for

v.
To charge someone some surprisingly large amount of money: The airline stung us for $100 to change our ticket.
See also: sting

sting

1. tv. to cheat or swindle someone; to overcharge someone. That street merchant stung me, but good.
2. n. a well-planned scheme to entrap criminals. The sting came off without a hitch.
3. tv. to entrap and arrest someone. “We’ve been stung!” they hollered.

sting someone for something

tv. to cheat someone of a particular amount; to make someone pay for something. That guy stung me for twenty bucks!
See also: sting
References in periodicals archive ?
He stingingly condemned "this pride and loss beyond the law caused by the viceroy's obedience to God and king.
Quest's rendition of the Clinton campaign in particular, reported by Mark Miller, is stingingly accurate and prescient.
I visited on the filthiest of days with sheets of stingingly hostile rain hammering down from a menacing grey sky.
It was an English rebuke, indirect but implacable, a stingingly subtle request that this oddly dressed American kept her views to herself.
For a final encore, Beck returned to the stage solo (that hazy spotlight again) for a breathtaking rendition of ``Nobody's Fault But My Own'' -- a song written for 1998's ``Mutations'' but stingingly appropriate to his current state of hurt.
Thinking about her elemental poems, which are so cheeky and rash, so stingingly honest, impertinent, and deathward-leaning, so filled with mordant wit and comic desperation ("learn too that being comical," she explains in a poem about Jesus, "does not ameliorate the desperation"), I keep wanting to adapt something Randall Jarrell once wrote about Walt Whitman.
Some of his literary gestures work less well than others here--the plot-heavy take on character actor Bob Balaban's repetitious roles is repetitious, for instance, and the photos that speckle the book are less interesting aesthetically and thematically than they might be (with the exception of one very funny collage-text)--but in large part this is a breathtakingly intelligent project of confession and appropriation textured with electric insights, glassy prose, and a cool, dry, arch irony about David Shields's favorite subject, David Shields, a character at once stingingly self-aware and painfully forlorn: "I don't know what's the matter with me--why I'm an adept only at distance, why I feel so remote from things, why life feels like a rumor.
I think underneath it all he's a guy that wouldn't harm anybody, but he's kind of got ideas above his station, and he thinks he's perhaps more attractive and more fun than he is a with more personality than he actually has, '' she says stingingly.
Add a bull whip and you'll have a recipe for a stingingly sexy new love life.