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dip (one's) toe in the water

To tentatively begin or get involved in a new experience. Likened to gently placing one's toe into water to test its temperature. I'm terrified that people won't like my writing, but I've been dipping my toe in the water at a local writer's club to get a sense of it. I've always preferred to dive right into new experiences, rather than just dipping a toe in the water, but everyone is different, I suppose.
See also: dip, toe, water

dip (one's) toe into (something)

To tentatively begin or get involved in a new experience. Likened to gently placing one's toe into water to test its temperature. I studied graphic design in college, but I've been dipping my toe into writing fiction lately. I've always wanted to travel the world, but I've never left the US. I'll dip my toe into it this summer, though, with a short trip to Toronto.
See also: dip, toe

dip out

1. To leave a place quickly, suddenly, and/or inconspicuously. The lecture was so boring that I just dipped out when the professor wasn't looking.
2. To miss out on or choose not to participate in something. (Usually followed by "on.") Primarily heard in Australia, New Zealand. Many students end up dipping out on government funding for third-level education because they simply don't understand the application process. I think I'll dip out on that party this evening, I'd rather just stay at home.
3. To fail an exam or course at school. Primarily heard in Australia, New Zealand. Jonathan was eager to leave school, but he dipped out in his final exams and had to repeat the year.
4. To exit due to a failure to advance, as from a sports tournament. Though heavily favored to win the championship for a third straight year, the team dipped out after only the second round.
See also: dip, out

lucky dip

1. noun A game in which a person (typically a child) pays to search through a container in the hopes of picking out a prize that cannot be seen. Primarily heard in UK. I remember playing the lucky dip when I was young. In those days, cheap little toys were hidden in barrels of sawdust, and you had to pick them out with your eyes closed!
2. noun Any process or method in which the outcome is chosen or selected at random or without certainty. Primarily heard in UK. Buying a car online that's worth your money can be something of a lucky dip.
3. adjective (hyphenated and used before a noun) Of or having a process of random selection. Primarily heard in UK. To make room selection fair for all incoming students, the university decided to implement a lucky-dip system for room assignments.
See also: dip, lucky

dip into the blue

euphemism To say something obscene. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to dip into the blue there—the whole situation just makes me so angry! Poor Bobby couldn't stop blushing after he accidentally dipped into the blue while talking to my grandparents.
See also: blue, dip

chips and dip

A snack consisting of chips and a sauce or condiment to dip them into. Put out some chips and dip for everyone before the show starts.
See also: and, chip, dip

dip (in)to (something)

To fall temporarily or quickly to a lower level or degree. You should bring a jacket because the temperature is going to dip to 60 degrees tonight.
See also: dip

dip in(to) (something)

1. To dunk something into something else, such as a dipping sauce. I can't eat French fries without dipping them in ketchup first.
2. To push something deeper into a liquid. While I sat on the dock, I dipped my feet into the water.
3. To take from something in small amounts. This usage is often used to describe money. When my car broke down, I had to dip into my savings to pay for all of the repairs. If you kids keep dipping into the cookies, there'll be none left for the party!
4. To pursue or investigate something casually. Because my area of expertise is modernism, I've only dipped into Victorian literature.
See also: dip

dip into (one's) savings

To take money from one's savings account in small amounts. When my car broke down, I had to dip into my savings to pay for all of the repairs.
See also: dip, saving


Involved in and benefiting from two different things at once, often illegally. Once you start getting pension payments, you could be accused of double-dipping.

dip into (one's) pocket

To spend a lot of one's money. We had to dig deep into our pockets after our construction budget ballooned beyond what we had planned.
See also: dip, pocket

chips and dip

potato chips, or some other kind of crisp snack food, and a sauce or dressing to dip them into before eating them. There were tons of chips and dip and all kinds of cold drinks available for everyone.
See also: and, chip, dip

dip into one's savings

Fig. to take out part of the money one has been saving. (See also dip in(to something).) I had to dip into my savings in order to pay for my vacation. I went to the bank and dipped into savings. There wasn't much left.
See also: dip, saving

dip in

 (to something)
1. . to reach into a liquid. I dipped into the dishwater, looking for the missing spoon. I dipped in and there it was.
2. to reach into a substance, usually to remove some of the substance. I dipped into the sour cream with a potato chip and brought out an enormous glob. He grabbed the jar of peanut butter and dipped in.
3. [for something] to sink or lower into a liquid. The oars dipped into the water and came out again. The lower branches sagged down to the water and dipped in.
See also: dip

dip something in(to) something

 and dip something in
to put something into a substance in order to take some of it. Tom dipped some of the bread into the cheese sauce. Dip in the bread again and get some more cheese on it.
See also: dip

dip to something

to decline to a lower level quickly or briefly. The temperature dipped into the lower twenties overnight. The stock market dipped to a very low level during the day Friday.
See also: dip


to swim naked. The boys were skinny-dipping in the creek when Bob's mother drove up.

chip and dip

Also, chip'n dip. A snack food or an appetizer consisting of potato chips, crackers, or raw vegetables (like carrot sticks) that are used to scoop up a dip, a savory creamy mixture. For example, There wasn't much to eat; all they served was a chip and dip. The term is also used for the utensils employed for this dish-a plate for the crackers and a small bowl for the dip. [Mid-1900s]
See also: and, chip, dip

dip into

1. Investigate superficially, as in He began to dip into Chaucer, or She's just dipping into psychology. This expression alludes to plunging briefly into a liquid. [Late 1600s]
2. Withdraw something in small amounts, usually money, as in I'll have to dip into my savings. This usage employs dip into in the sense of plunging one's hand or a ladle into a pot, water, or the like for the purpose of taking something out. [Early 1800s]
See also: dip

dip one's toes into

Also, get one's toes into or wet . Begin to do something novel or unfamiliar, as in I have been dipping my toes into Asian cooking, or She's eager to go to Europe and has been getting her toes wet by getting travel information. [Late 1900s] Also see get one's feet wet.
See also: dip, toe

dip into your pocket


dig into your pocket

COMMON If someone dips into their pocket or digs into their pocket, they pay for something with their own money. As a player, you must dip into your own pocket at times, for boots, training gear, and the odd hotel room. Note: You can also say that someone puts their hand in their pocket, with the same meaning. The only time you'll have to put your hand in your pocket is for the spa treatments. Note: Pocket is used in many expressions with similar meanings connected with paying for things. What this club needs is for the directors to dip their hands in their pockets. Note: To talk about paying a lot of money, expressions such as dig deep into your pocket are often used. Adrian dug deep into his own pocket and published the book himself. Note: You can just say that someone digs deep, or that they dig deeper. At Christmas, most will dig deep and spend more than last year. We are asking the richer nations to dig deeper.
See also: dip, pocket

dip a toe in the water


dip your toe in the water

mainly BRITISH
If you dip a toe in the water or dip your toe in the water, you start slowly and carefully doing something that you have not done before, because you are not sure if you will like it or if it will be successful. Until now, the company has only dipped its toe in the water by using the service to test existing adverts rather than to create new ones. Note: You can use other verbs such as put or have instead of dip. His company has recently opened offices in Taiwan and Spain. `We have our toes in the water,' Mr. Creedon says. For many people, coming on a course like this is a way of putting a toe in the water. Note: You can also describe a situation where someone tries something a toe in the water. The vice-chairman said that the company's involvement would be a toe in the water. Note: You can also use toe in the water before a noun. We are taking a toe in the water approach by opening a small gallery first.
See also: dip, toe, water

dip your pen in gall

write unpleasantly or spitefully.
Gall is another word for bile, the bitter secretion of the liver; it is used in many places in the Bible as a metaphor for bitterness or affliction. See also wormwood and gall (at wormwood).
See also: dip, gall, pen

dip your toe into something

begin to do or test something cautiously.
The image here is of putting your toe briefly into water in order to check the temperature.
See also: dip, something, toe

dip your wick

(of a man) have sexual intercourse. vulgar slang
See also: dip, wick

dip into

1. To plunge something briefly into a liquid: I dipped the donut into the coffee.
2. To take a small amount of something from where it is stored: We have been dipping into the olives you bought all day, but there are still some left.
3. To withdraw a small amount from some place where it is stored or kept: We dipped into our savings account to buy the car.
4. To browse something: I dipped into the book, but I didn't read the whole thing.
5. To investigate some subject superficially; dabble in something: I've dipped into psychology, but it never really interested me.
See also: dip


1. n. a drunkard. (From dipsomaniac.) Buy the dip a drink. That’ll shut him up for a while.
2. and dipper n. a pickpocket. (Underworld.) The dip tried a snatch, but the dupe turned around at the wrong time. The cops picked up three dippers, working as a group, at the fairgrounds.
3. n. a pinch or helping of snuff. He took a dip just before he picked up the bat.
4. n. a wad of chewing tobacco. You could see he had a big dip in his cheek.
5. n. an oaf; a jerk. (Probably from dipshit.) Why are you acting like such a dip?
References in periodicals archive ?
Boost flavor to boring meals by adding Marzetti Veggie Dips to your next sandwich, panini or wrap
Senor Felix recalled the nationally distributed dip last month after it was linked to the recent shigellosis outbreak.
Just because these dips are casual fare doesn't mean they can't be presented with style.
When to refresh the dip bowl after a visit from the dip hog?
Serve gourmet food to gourmets and updated traditional tidbits to the less adventurous,'' advises Epstein, who was once asked by a guest - when she set out a spread of gourmet tidbits - if she had any onion soup dip.
During our initial fact finding with farmers, we discovered that they are dissatisfied with the performance of their current teat dip products in overall effectiveness, waste, and cost effectiveness.
This dressing is also great as a dip or served alongside roast beef or ham slices.
Poore Brothers also markets branded tortilla chips and dips, which it distributes along with a variety of snack food products manufactured by other companies.
Sabra Dipping Company, LLC is the leader in the refrigerated dips and spreads category and producer of America's top-selling hummus.
One of the most popular cheese dips can be found at Dizzy's Gypsy Bistro in downtown Little Rock.
The East region ranked second in weekly dollar sales for produce dips with $393 per store, an increase of 2.
49 Part of G'Nosh's new gourmet dips range and we are BIG fans.
a YouGov spokesperson said, "this research shows us that a huge number of Brits experience dips or lulls in energy, a lack of focus or lapses of concentration during mid morning and afternoons.
Doritos has unveiled plans to get more shoppers - particularly gamers - buying dips with their chips.