a hard-luck story

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a hard-luck story

A typically self-pitying tale of misfortune, hardship, adversity, etc., told especially to gain sympathy or charity from others. Here he goes again with some hard-luck story to get us to pay for his drinks.
See also: story

a hard-ˈluck story

a story about yourself that you tell somebody in order to get their sympathy or help: He stopped me in the street and told me a long hard-luck story about his wife leaving him. All he really wanted was some money.Don’t give me any of your hard-luck stories, John. I don’t believe them.
See also: story
References in periodicals archive ?
You'd tell her about how some panhandler got another free meal out of you over at your Van Nuys restaurant, where the word was out that you were a soft touch for a hard luck story.
First it was Drakes on Wilshire Boulevard for about 10 years until the landlord doubled the rent on you, then the Patio in Van Nuys for an additional 30, where you got that rep as having a soft heart for a hard luck story.