dusting


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Related to dusting: Crop dusting, dusting off
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dust

1. noun, informal A disturbance or commotion. The supervisor is going to kick up a dust if he finds out about this. There's a lot of police activity around here lately. We should wait for the dust to settle before we start dealing again.
2. noun, slang Any powdered illicit drug, especially cocaine. Here's $50. See if you can score us some dust for the party tonight.
3. verb, slang To murder (someone). He started talking smack, so I pulled out my Glock and dusted the fool.
4. verb, slang To defeat (someone) handily or thoroughly in a competition, especially a race. The high school senior dusted the rest of the competition in today's 400m dash.

dust off

1. To remove dust and dirt from someone or something by patting or wiping. A noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "off." After sliding into third base, I got up and dusted myself off. Here, take this rag and dust off the TV stand before Grandma gets here.
2. To ready something (often by retrieving it from storage) so that it can be used again. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "off." Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, it's time to dust off the Christmas decorations!
3. slang In baseball, to throw a pitch at or very close to the body of the batter. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "off." Don't be afraid to dust off the batter a bit if he's crowding the plate.
4. To ready oneself for something that one used to do, often after something unpleasant has happened. In this usage, a reflexive pronoun is used between "dust" and "off." I know you struggled last season, but it's time to dust yourself off and start fresh this season.
5. To punch or beat someone. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "off." I ran to get a teacher when I heard the school bully threaten to dust off another kid in our class.
6. To kill or defeat someone. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "off." No one expected the highest-seeded team to be dusted off so early in the playoffs.
See also: dust, off

dust out

To remove the dust from a thing or space. A noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "out." Hey, dust out that vase and bring it up here so we can put the bouquet in it.
See also: dust, out

dust up

1. To remove dust and dirt from someone or something by patting, brushing, or wiping. A noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "up." After sliding into third base, I got up and dusted myself up. Here, take this rag and dust up the TV stand before Grandma gets here.
2. To begin to use something that has been dormant or unused for a long time, as if it were covered in dust. A noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "up." I decided to dust up the novel I started writing in college and finally try to finish it.
3. To cover something with dust or a dust-like substance. A noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "up." I like to finish the cake by dusting it up with powdered sugar.
4. To pass someone very quickly or handily, as on a trail or in a race. A noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "up." I thought I would be a faster climber, but Jack completely dusted me up to the summit. The younger runner dusted up all of his competitors.
5. To make someone or oneself ready to continue trying to do something or begin something again, especially after something unpleasant or demoralizing has happened. A noun or pronoun is used between "dust" and "up" I know you struggled last season, but it's time to dust yourself up and start fresh this season. I really struggled after losing my job, but my wife helped dust me up and start looking for a new career.
6. To punch or beat someone. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "dust" and "up." I ran to get a teacher when I heard the school bully threaten to dust up another kid in our class. The detective dusted the suspect up a bit when he refused to admit to the crime.
See also: dust, up
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

dust someone off

Sl. to punch or beat someone. We dusted them off one by one. We had to dust off all those big guys. dust someone or something off to wipe or brush the dust off someone or something. Dust this vase off and put it on the shelf. Please dust off this vase.
See also: dust, off

dust something out

to brush the dust out of something. Dust this cabinet out and put the china back in. Please dust out this cabinet.
See also: dust, out
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

dust off

1. Restore to use. For example, I've dusted off last year's menu for the party. This usage alludes to cleaning and thereby renewing some object. [Mid-1900s]
2. Pitch a baseball dangerously close to the batter's head, as in I'm sure he dusted him off on purpose. [Slang; 1920s]
3. Finish off, kill; also, easily defeat. For example, They vowed to dust off the old man, or We'll dust off this team in no time. [Slang; c. 1940]
4. Thrash, beat up, as in If he didn't hand over his wallet, they threatened to dust him off. [Slang; 1920s]
See also: dust, off
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

dust off

v.
1. To remove dust from something or someone by brushing or wiping: I dusted off the old trunk in the attic. We picked up the antiques and dusted them off.
2. To restore something to use: The mechanic dusted off that old engine and sold it. I dusted off last year's winter coat and put it on.
See also: dust, off
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

dust

1. in. to leave; to depart. They dusted out of there at about midnight.
2. tv. to defeat someone; to win out over someone. We dusted the other team, eighty-seven to fifty-four.
3. tv. to kill someone. (Underworld.) The gang set out to dust the witnesses but got only one of them.
4. n. fine tobacco for rolling cigarettes. (Prisons.) How about trading a little dust for this candy bar?
5. n. a powdered drug: heroin, phencyclidine (PCP), cocaine; fine cannabis. (Drugs.) It’s the dust that can really do you damage.
6. tv. to add a powdered drug to the end of a (tobacco or cannabis) cigarette. (Drugs.) Pete dusted one, then lit it up.
7. n. worthless matter. John said that Frank was going to be dust if Mr. Gutman ever heard about what happened.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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