paddle

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up shit's creek (without a paddle)

rude slang In a challenging or daunting situation. I'm a single mother who just lost her job—I'm really up shit's creek right now. A: "I just found out that the school told my parents that I'm failing French." B: "Oh man, you're up shit's creek without a paddle."
See also: creek, up

up a/the creek (without a paddle)

slang In a challenging or troublesome situation, especially one that cannot be easily resolved. I have no savings, so if I get fired from my job, I'll be up the creek without a paddle. Shouldn't we stop for gas? We'll be up a creek if the car dies on that desolate road ahead.
See also: creek, up

up shit creek (without a paddle)

rude slang In a challenging or troublesome situation, especially one that cannot be easily resolved. I have no savings, so if I get fired from my job, I'll be up shit creek without a paddle. Shouldn't we stop for gas? We'll be up shit creek if the car dies on that desolate road ahead.
See also: creek, shit, up

paddle (one's) own canoe

To act independently. Now that you're 30, people expect you to paddle your own canoe—you can't just live with your parents forever.
See also: canoe, own, paddle

be up (a/the) creek (without a paddle)

slang To be in a challenging or troublesome situation, especially one that cannot be easily resolved. I have no savings, so if I get fired from my job, I'll be up the creek without a paddle. Shouldn't we stop for gas? We'll be up a creek if the car dies on that desolate road ahead.
See also: creek, up

paddle one's own canoe

Fig. to do something by oneself; to be alone. I've been left to paddle my own canoe too many times. Sally isn't with us. She's off paddling her own canoe.
See also: canoe, own, paddle

paddle one's own canoe

Be independent and self-reliant, as in It's time Bill learned to paddle his own canoe. This idiom alludes to steering one's own boat. [c. 1800]
See also: canoe, own, paddle

up a creek

Also, up shit creek; up the creek (without a paddle). In trouble, in a serious predicament, as in If the check doesn't arrive today I'm up a creek, or The car wouldn't start, so I was up the creek without a paddle. This slangy idiom conjures up the image of a stranded canoeist with no way of moving (paddling) the canoe. President Harry S. Truman used the first term in a letter in 1918. The first variant is considered vulgar.
See also: creek, up

paddle your own canoe

If you paddle your own canoe, you control what you want to do without anyone's help or interference. With no one managing him, he was basically left to paddle his own canoe. As far as the rest of Europe is concerned we've just got to paddle our own canoe.
See also: canoe, own, paddle

be up the creek without a paddle

be in severe difficulty, usually with no means of extricating yourself from it. informal
Often shortened to be up the creek , this expression is recorded in the mid 20th century as military slang for ‘lost’ (for example, while on a patrol).
See also: creek, paddle, up, without

paddle your own canoe

be independent and self-sufficient. informal
This expression has been in figurative use from the early 19th century: it was the title of a popular song by Sarah T. Bolton in 1854 .
See also: canoe, own, paddle

up shit creek (without a paddle)

and up the creek (without a paddle) and up a creek
mod. in an awkward position with no easy way out. (Usually objectionable.) There I was, at Disney World with only a measly $47.54. I was literally up the creek without a paddle. You are up a creek! You got yourself into it, so get yourself out.
See also: creek, paddle, shit, up, without

up the creek without a paddle

verb
See also: creek, paddle, up, without

up a creek

verb
See also: creek, up
References in periodicals archive ?
Setting out from the wide beach behind the center, we paddled toward the California-Nevada border at Brockway Point, where we explored a jumbled maze of giant, half-submerged granite boulders along a sandy beach.
At night, as moonlight filtered though lacy fig trees, we paddled upstream looking for tapir, Belize's national animal.
weigh-in time approached, all of the kayakers paddled for the dock.
One afternoon on the river, Sylvan and I paddled out of a cove and came upon the first and only person we met during our trip.
After launching at the county park boat ramp, we paddled under the Highway 101 bridge to Maple Creek Estuary.
I paddled hard to get past the hole and not get stuck.
Wold showed me how to position myself near the wave's peak and then I windmill paddled to build up speed to catch the wave.
Faith in those we know who have paddled this river and told us their stories?
I paddled along the eastern shore, my shoulders, arms and upper back getting a workout as the kayak's nose swayed from side to side with each pull.
We paddled around in a circle, much to the amusement of folks at the lake targeting trout on a derby day.
In the distance a shirtless man paddled a dugout canoe.
The trail was named in honor of the tomol, a plank boat paddled and built by the Chumash Indians, who first inhabited the area.
The new trail helps visitors explore the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area from a new perspective and draws attention to the ancient culture of the Chumash Indians, who paddled in plank boats called tomols throughout the region.
So as quietly as possible, with hearts pounding madly, we paddled between the two mammoth species, hoping they would sense we were not rivals coveting their turf but harmless, if annoying, tourists just passing through.