play (merry) hell with (someone or something)

(redirected from playing hell with)

play (merry) hell with (someone or something)

informal To cause issues or disruptions for someone or something. This wonky Internet signal is playing merry hell with my site edits right now.
See also: hell, play

play hell with someone or something

Fig. to cause enormous disruptions with someone or something. (Use discretion with hell.) Your proposal would play hell with Gerry and his plans. This new event really plays hell with my schedule.
See also: hell, play

play hell

or

play merry hell

mainly BRITISH
If someone plays hell or plays merry hell, they cause trouble by behaving badly or complaining a lot. I went to the school and played hell with them. She played merry hell and stormed out in a rage. Note: Verbs such as kick up, raise or create can be used instead of play. I will be raising merry hell at the meeting tomorrrow.
See also: hell, play

play hell with something

or

play merry hell with something

mainly BRITISH
If one thing plays hell with another or plays merry hell with another, the first thing has a bad effect on the second one or causes great confusion. Divorce and remarriage play hell with property and inheritance law. Slugs play merry hell with growing plants.
See also: hell, play, something

play (merry) hell with

throw into turmoil; disrupt. informal
See also: hell, play

play (merry) ˈhell with somebody/something

(British English, informal) disturb, upset or trouble somebody/something very much: These storms play merry hell with our TV reception.
References in classic literature ?
I continue: with such disposition what prevents women--to use the phrase an old boatswain of my acquaintance applied descriptively to his captain--what prevents them from "coming on deck and playing hell with the ship" generally, is that something in them precise and mysterious, acting both as restraint and as inspiration; their femininity in short which they think they can get rid of by trying hard, but can't, and never will.
He said the net was destroying thousands of jobs, playing hell with the music industry, threatening the continued existence of newspapers and libraries.
ordered Kirk, springing up from the wicker chair--which in any case was playing hell with the trim of his trousers--and heading to the main viewscreen.
Besides playing hell with our category listings, that overwhelming imbalance posed a huge question:
I was playing hell with Adam for not getting the ball in earlier and then Jamie scored,'' said Wales under-21 coach Jimmy Shoulder.