play footsie

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play footsie(s) (with someone)

1. To rub someone's foot or feet with one's own, usually in secret beneath a table as a means of flirting or indicating romantic or sexual interest. My friend's sister started playing footsie with me during dinner. I had no idea she was into me! Are you two playing footsies?
2. By extension, to become secretly involved with someone; to offer clandestine cooperation with someone to gain their favor. It's been revealed that the senator has been playing footsie with major corporations to bypass federal regulations and bureaucratic red tape.
See also: play
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

play footsie with someone

1. to get romantically or sexually involved with someone. (Refers literally to secretly pushing or rubbing feet with someone under the table.) Someone said that Ruth is playing footsie with Henry. Henry and Ruth are playing footsie with each other.
2. to get involved in a scheme with someone; to cooperate with someone. The guy who runs the butcher shop was playing footsie with the city meat inspector. Henry was playing footsie with the mayor in order to get the contract.
See also: footsie, play
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

play footsie

1. Behave coyly, flirt with, especially secretly. For example, Get to the point, there's no need to play footsie with us. This expression alludes to two persons surreptitiously rubbing each other's feet together. [1940s]
2. Cooperate or curry favor with in a sly or secret way, as in The mayor's been playing footsie with various neighborhood councils. [Mid-1900s]
See also: footsie, play
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.

play footsie

1. If someone plays footsie, they touch or rub someone else's foot under a table as a sign of sexual interest. These couples drink lots of Chianti, share a dessert, play footsie and tip quite well.
2. If someone plays footsie with a person or organization, they show that they like them or are interested in them in an indirect and often insincere way. The singer has been playing footsie with all the major record labels. He was still playing footsie with the Prime Minister in order to get back in the Cabinet.
See also: footsie, play
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

play ˈfootsie (with somebody)

touch somebody’s feet lightly with your own feet, especially under a table, as an expression of affection or sexual interest
See also: footsie, play
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

play footsie

1. To flirt with someone by secretly touching the feet with one's own.
2. To cooperate or curry favor in a sly or devious way.
See also: footsie, play
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Yet Salmond can play footsie with an Australian and an American with billions of pounds at stake and suffer no consequences.
ambassador to the country since 2005and, over the weekend, a report surfaced in the Kuwaiti press that the Syrians have told Obama adviser Dennis Ross (who is heading to the region now) that they're ready to play footsie back, in the form of opening dialogue with the Israelis.
I don't think the Democrats should embrace "9/11 truthers" any more than I think Republicans should play footsie with birthers.
"This election is a time for voters to choose, not a time for politicians to play footsie with each other.
Having refused to rule out an alliance with either the Tories or Labour last week, the Lib Dem leader will maintain that he is not trying to "play footsie" with his counterparts.
The societies "play footsie" with third-party payers and then tell members post facto that the society obtained a "good deal" and will reward those of us who "play ball." What hogwash!
Lots of straight ladies like to play footsie, especially when cerebrally lubricated.
In an early episode, two wives from the neighboring polygamous household play footsie under the table.
Did he ever play footsie with men or boys at a sports bar?
Seidensticker's consistent refusals to play footsie with successive waves of Japanese intellies and his independent angle toward matters of political correctness (both East and West), his rejection of boosterism in any form, have, for instance, made him an occasional target of those who prefer the myth of Japanese uniqueness to the more mixed and humanly complicated reality.
Negative and positive play footsie across the surfaces, with patterns of white wall peeping through and constructed attachments projecting outward.
PLAY footsie with all sorts of summer shoe styles from sturdy comfort seekers to strappy sandals.
We'd drink the best French red wine and then I'd play footsie under the tablecloth.
And when our elected officials play footsie with the militias, as Ross notes in her article, they need to be held accountable by the media and by the voters.
The usual rationales: the need to end "gridlock"; teh strength of the timber industry; the carpenters' union and its allies; the desire to play footsie with the Clinton crowd.