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hot rod

An automobile that has been specially refitted, redesigned, or altered in some way so as to achieve very high speeds and acceleration. I've spent nearly two years turning this old worn-out Mustang into one heck of a hot rod.
See also: hot, rod

kiss the rod

To accept punishment passively. As a child, I always found it best to just kiss the rod—arguing with my parents always made the situation worse.
See also: kiss, rod

lightning rod

Something or someone that becomes the focus of others' criticism or blame. Primarily heard in US. The CEO became a lightning rod for criticism when his company laid off a third of its employees.
See also: lightning, rod

square rod

A measure of land equal to roughly 25 square miles. I need a measurement of the available land in square rods, please.
See also: rod, square

stick to beat (someone or something) with

Something, often a mishap or misdeed, that is used as an excuse for criticism. Even the slightest mistake by Stan was enough to give the boss a stick to beat him with.
See also: beat, stick

make a rod for (one's) own back

To cause problems for oneself in the future by doing something in the present that is ill advised. Primarily heard in UK. I'm telling you, if you don't get some more exercise now, you'll be making a rod for yourself when you get older.
See also: back, make, own, rod

rule with a rod of iron

To rule, govern, or control a group or population with complete power over all aspects of life, work, etc. He rules with a rod of iron, and moves swiftly to gain control over any entity that is not already in his grasp. She has ruled this company with a rod of iron for three decades, and it's going to be difficult for her to let go of control.
See also: iron, of, rod, rule

spare the rod and spoil the child.

Prov. You should punish a child when he or she misbehaves, because if you do not, the child will grow up expecting everyone to indulge him or her. Jane: How can you allow your little boy to be so rude? Ellen: It distresses me to punish him. Jane: lean understand that, but spare the rod and spoil the child.
See also: and, child, rod, spare, spoil

hot rod

An automobile modified to increase its speed and acceleration, as in Kids love to tinker with cars and try to convert them into hot rods. [Mid-1900s] Also see hopped up.
See also: hot, rod

spare the rod and spoil the child

Discipline is necessary for good upbringing, as in She lets Richard get away with anything-spare the rod, you know. This adage appears in the Bible (Proverbs 13:24) and made its way into practically every proverb collection. It originally referred to corporal punishment. It is still quoted, often in shortened form, and today does not necessarily mean physical discipline.
See also: and, child, rod, spare, spoil

a lightning rod for something

If someone is a lightning rod for something such as anger or criticism, they are the person who is naturally blamed or criticized by people, although there are other people who are responsible. She has become a lightning rod for criticism of the administration. He told the Palermo court he was an innocent lightning rod for Italy's many crime problems. Note: You can also just call someone a lightning rod. She was the party's chief manager, star campaigner and also its lightning rod. Note: A lightning rod is a long metal strip, one end of which is fixed on the roof of a building, with the other end in the ground to protect the building from being damaged by lightning.
See also: lightning, rod, something

make a rod for your own back

If you make a rod for your own back, you do something which will cause you many problems in the future. You're making a rod for your own back, you know, letting the child into your bed at night. You'll never get her to stay in her own bed now. Note: Verbs such as create are sometimes used instead of make. In a way, the company's success has created a rod for its own back, for the style is copied everywhere. Note: This expression refers to someone providing the stick with which they themselves will be beaten.
See also: back, make, own, rod

spare the rod and spoil the child

People say spare the rod and spoil the child, to mean that if you do not punish a child severely when the child behaves badly, their behaviour will become worse. Kids needed authority figures — spare the rod and spoil the child. Note: People sometimes just say spare the rod. We believe in discipline. We don't spare the rod.
See also: and, child, rod, spare, spoil

kiss the rod

accept punishment meekly or submissively.
This idiom refers to a former practice of making a child kiss the rod with which it was beaten. It is used by Shakespeare in Two Gentlemen of Verona: ‘How wayward is this foolish love That, like a testy babe, will scratch the nurse And presently all humbled kiss the rod’.
See also: kiss, rod

make a rod for your own back

do something likely to cause difficulties for yourself later.
See also: back, make, own, rod

a rod in pickle

a punishment in store.
In pickle means ‘preserved ready for future use’. This form, which dates from the mid 17th century, has superseded an earlier mid 16th-century variant a rod in piss .
See also: pickle, rod

rule someone or something with a rod of iron

control or govern someone or something very strictly or harshly.
This expression comes from Psalm 2:9: ‘Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel’.
See also: iron, of, rod, rule, someone, something

spare the rod and spoil the child

if children are not physically punished when they do wrong their personal development will suffer. proverb
See also: and, child, rod, spare, spoil

a rod/stick to ˈbeat somebody with

a fact, an argument, etc. that is used in order to blame or punish somebody: The results of the national exams this year are being used as another stick to beat teachers with.
See also: beat, rod, somebody, stick

make a rod for your own ˈback

do something which is likely to cause problems for yourself, especially in the future: I think she’s making a rod for her own back by not telling him she’s leaving. When he finds out, there’ll be trouble.
See also: back, make, own, rod

rule (somebody/something) with a rod of ˈiron/with an iron ˈhand

(informal) control somebody/something in a very strong or strict way: They ruled the country with an iron hand and anybody who protested was arrested.
See also: hand, iron, of, rod, rule

ˌspare the ˈrod and ˌspoil the ˈchild

(saying) if you do not punish a child for behaving badly, he/she will behave badly in future
See also: and, child, rod, spare, spoil

(hot) rod

n. a car that has been customized for power and speed by the owner. My rod’ll outrun yours any day.
See also: hot, rod



lightning rod

n. someone, something, or an issue that is certain to draw criticism. Why write such a boastful introduction to your book. I will just be a lightning rod for criticism.
See also: lightning, rod


1. n. a gun; a revolver. (Underworld.) I got a rod in my pocket. Don’t move.
2.  Go to (hot) rod.


n. the crankshaft of an engine. A wrinkle-rod’ll set you back about $199, plus installation charges, of course.
References in periodicals archive ?
But I had a fly rod with me - so I set it up and was soon into a nice fish that saved the day.
If various rods have equal joint strength, the decision should not be based on initial cost but rather the lowest cost per meter.
Let's say you stepped on a guide of your rod that was lying on the deck of your boat.
Rods Gone Wild is a sole proprietorship with Bob Boisvert at the helm.
The UNiD Cervical Rod technology removes this existing surgical barrier by creating two strictly identical single or dual-diameter rods manufactured specifically for the patient and delivered directly to the Operating Room.
Recent developments in rodbuilding are unbelievable and there are a few expensive rods of exceptional quality on the market that are a joy to use and help the caster, even in the most difficult conditions.
One unfortunate Patriot unit had an M860AI trailer torque rod.
Since blindness in people can also be caused by nonworking rod cells, the treatment could be a step toward sight for humans too, says Swaroop.
In the new study, researchers transplanted retinal cells from fetal mice, newborns, or adults to mice that, because of genetic defects, had lost their rods and thus their night vision.
When the rod itself becomes so corroded that it can no longer do its job, the tank soon rusts out, leaks and needs replacement.
Drapery hardware has become an integral part of a room's decor, and manufacturers have responded by introducing finials, poles, rings, rods and accent pieces in a wide variety of styles.
While he acknowledges that there may be a weight advantage to using powdered metal, "If the con rods are redesigned"--for forged steel--"then they can be lower in weight than powdered metal.
18 rods brought 127 brown trout to the net, four kept.
Gulf Underwriters Insurance Company, a group of welders sued NEMA claiming that it issued standards permitting the use of manganese in welding rods, even though it knew about the dangers of manganese fumes.
Dowsing activities have been documented throughout human history: people using dowsing tools in 30,000 year old cave wall paintings in Spain and in 7000 year old cave paintings in Iraq; a 3000 year old Chinese woodcut shows workers using long rods to detect Feng Shui energies, and 3000 year old Egyptian writings describe the use of pendulums and divining techniques.