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crazy like a fox

Very clever, cunning, or shrewd while appearing foolish or mad. People thought I was crazy when I told them my idea for massive social networking site—crazy like a fox, more like it! Our boss is crazy like a fox; her daredevil schemes always sound like they'll bankrupt us, but they invariably bring in a huge profit.
See also: crazy, fox, like

Don't let the fox guard the henhouse.

Don't assign the duty of protecting or controlling valuable information or resources to someone who is likely to exploit that opportunity. You're going to put your ex-convict brother-in-law in charge of your business? I can't tell you how to run your company, but don't let the fox guard the henhouse.
See also: fox, guard, let

fox guarding the henhouse

A person likely to exploit the information or resources that they have been charged to protect or control. My sister is going to put her ex-convict brother-in-law in charge of her business, and I'm worried he'll be like a fox guarding the henhouse.
See also: fox, guard, henhouse

fox in the henhouse

Someone with bad intentions. (A fox would prey upon hens in a henhouse.) I'd watch out for him if I were you—he walks around here like a fox in the henhouse.
See also: fox, henhouse

fox's sleep

A state of apparent sleep (or feigned indifference) in which someone is actually aware of everything going on around him or her. Alludes to the idea that foxes sleep with one eye open and thus are always at the ready. I think Amy is just in a fox's sleep, so be careful what you say right now. The best way to get gossip on these trips is to be in a fox's sleep.
See also: sleep

shoot (one's) fox

To undermine or thwart someone's plans, efforts, or ambitions by taking action that pre-empts them or makes them redundant. Primarily heard in UK. Congress may have shot the president's fox, though, with a bill that he cannot politically afford to veto, but which leaves him with no opportunity to pass his signature healthcare plan.
See also: fox, shoot

*sly as a fox

 and *cunning as a fox
Cliché smart and clever. (*Also: as ~.) My nephew is as sly as a fox. You have to be cunning as a fox to outwit me.
See also: fox, sly

crazy like a fox

Seemingly foolish but actually very shrewd and cunning. For example, You think Bob was crazy to turn it down? He's crazy like a fox, because they've now doubled their offer . This usage gained currency when humorist S.J. Perelman used it as the title of a book (1944). [Early 1900s] .
See also: crazy, fox, like

crazy like a fox

If you describe someone as crazy like a fox, you mean that they seem strange or silly but may in fact be acting in a clever way. He can be as scary in person as he is on screen — that man is crazy like a fox. Note: The image here is of the fox that is traditionally seen as clever and able to trick people.
See also: crazy, fox, like

crazy like a fox

very cunning or shrewd.
See also: crazy, fox, like

shoot someone's fox

thwart someone's plans or ambitions by pre-empting them.
The expression comes from the world of fox-hunting, where shooting a fox, which robs the hunters of their sport, is viewed with great displeasure.
2004 Scotland on Sunday The Democrats had planned to make unemployment a key issue in their campaign: Dubya, with his tax cuts, has shot their fox.
See also: fox, shoot


n. an attractive girl or young woman. Man, who was that fox I saw you with?

fox trap

n. an automobile customized and fixed up in a way that will attract women. I put every cent I earned into my fox trap, but I still repelled women.
See also: fox, trap

a stone cold fox

n. a very fine and sexy woman. (see also fox.) That dame is a stone cold fox. What’s her phone number?
See also: cold, fox, stone

stone fox

n. an attractive woman; a very sexy woman. Who is that stone fox I saw you with last night?
See also: fox, stone
References in periodicals archive ?
Burbank * Fox Little, 20th Century Fox William Fox Theater,
Matthew Davies, who joined the firm from Fox Williams LLP, leads the practice following the retirement of former practice head Marian Dixon.
Joanne Owers joined DAC Beachcroft's Bristol office earlier this month from City practice Fox Williams, where she was also a Partner.
Without further prosecutions, now that a number of financial entities have been named in court, it is inconceivable to think that the public faith in Libor and the UK financial system as a whole will be fully restored," said James Carlton of law firm Fox Williams, who is not involved in the case.
James Carlton, a partner specialising in areas of business crime and regulation at Fox Williams, said: "This case illustrates that Kweku Adoboli, while 'rogue', could not have achieved what he did without there being significant failings within the overall trading operations and UBS clearly accepts a degree of corporate culpability for this.
In the document, lodged at the High Court by solicitors Fox Williams, Lictor claims that it is the rightful owner of the strip mill at the Newport plant.
It is up against: Ashurst LLP, Fox Williams LLP, Jackson Barrett & Gass Solicitors, London Borough of Brent Legal Team, Lovells LLP and PJH Law Solicitors.
The arrival of the `top-notch' Claire Frater from Fox Williams has strengthened a team that also includes the `efficient and diligent' Susan Howe.
Three out of five firms polled by City law firm Fox Williams said they had policies in place requiring staff to submit to a medical examination.
She joins Eversheds from Fox Williams in London where she was an assistant solicitor in the commercial litigation department.