sack

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cat in the sack

A ruse, swindle, or suspicious transaction. In English, the more common phrase is "(to buy a) pig in the poke" (a "poke" being an older word for a bag or sack), meaning to buy something without verifying its contents or value first; the "cat in the sack" (a phrase more common to other European languages) refers to an item of lesser quality or value that has been substituted in its place. This is also the basis for the phrase "the cat's out of the bag" (and iterations thereof), meaning the swindle or secret has been exposed. I thought I was getting a great deal buying my car from that online seller, but as soon as I drove it home, I realized I'd bought a cat in the sack.
See also: cat, sack

give (one) the sack

To fire someone from a job or task. The new secretary is so rude—I need to give her the sack. I tried so hard to do a good job in Mrs. Smith's garden, but she gave me the sack anyway.
See also: give, sack

an empty sack cannot stand upright

One must eat in order to carry out one's duties. Have some dinner before you go back to your research. An empty sack cannot stand upright, you know.
See also: cannot, empty, sack, stand, upright

can't carry a tune

Can't sing well; totally lacks musical talent. I think it's lovely that George wants to be in his church choir, but that boy can't carry a tune!
See also: carry, tune

hit the hay

To get into bed and go to sleep. I have to get up early for work tomorrow, so I think I'd better hit the hay.
See also: hay, hit

hit the sack

To get into bed and go to sleep. I have to get up early for work tomorrow, so I think I'd better hit the sack.
See also: hit, sack

get the sack

To be fired from a job or task. The new secretary is so rude—it's time she got the sack. I tried so hard to do a good job in Mrs. Smith's garden, but I got the sack anyway.
See also: get, sack

sack out

To go to bed; to fall asleep. I'd been getting up so early all week long that I was ready to sack out by 11 on Friday night. Jonathan sacked out in the passenger seat, so I had to drive nearly the whole way in total silence.
See also: out, sack

hold the sack

To be forced to deal with or bear an undesirable result, burden, or responsibility. Because the bank was considered too large to fail, when its value plummeted during the economic crash, it was the government that was left holding the sack. Unfortunately, small businesses are going to be the ones holding the sack if this agriculture bill is passed.
See also: hold, sack

can't carry a tune

 and cannot carry a tune; can't carry a tune in a bushel basket; can't carry a tune in a bucket; can't carry a tune in a paper sack
Fig. [to be] unable to sing a simple melody; lacking musical ability. I wish that Tom wouldn't try to sing. He can't carry a tune. I don't know why Mary's in the choir. She can't carry a tune in a bushel basket. Joe likes to sing in the shower, though he can't carry a tune in a bucket. I'd try to hum the song for you, but I can't carry a tune in a paper sack.
See also: carry, tune

An empty sack cannot stand upright.

Prov. A poor or hungry person cannot function properly. Sit down and have something to eat before you go back to work. An empty sack can't stand upright.
See also: cannot, empty, sack, stand, upright

hit the hay

 and hit the sack
Fig. to go to bed. I have to go home and hit the hay pretty soon. Let's hit the sack. We have to get an early start in the morning.
See also: hay, hit

nut up

Sl. to go crazy. (See also crack up.) I knew I would nut up if I didn't quit that job. I almost nutted up at the last place I worked.
See also: nut, up

*sack

 and *ax
dismissal from one's employment. (*Typically: get ~; give someone ~.) Poor Tom got the sack today. He's always late. I was afraid that Sally was going to get the ax.

sack out

to go to bed or go to sleep. It's time for me to sack out. Let's sack out early tonight.
See also: out, sack

sack something up

to put something into bags or sacks. Please sack the groceries up and put them in the cart. I will sack up your groceries.
See also: sack, up

sacked out

asleep. Mary is sacked out in her room. Here it is ten o'clock, and you are still sacked out!
See also: out, sack

get the ax

Also, get the boot or bounce or can or heave-ho or hook or sack . Be discharged or fired, expelled, or rejected. For example, He got the ax at the end of the first week, or The manager was stunned when he got the boot himself, or We got the bounce in the first quarter, or The pitcher got the hook after one inning, or Bill finally gave his brother-in-law the sack. All but the last of these slangy expressions date from the 1870s and 1880s. They all have variations using give that mean "to fire or expel someone," as in Are they giving Ruth the ax?Get the ax alludes to the executioner's ax, and get the boot to literally booting or kicking someone out. Get the bounce alludes to being bounced out; get the can comes from the verb can, "to dismiss," perhaps alluding to being sealed in a container; get the heave-ho alludes to heave in the sense of lifting someone bodily, and get the hook is an allusion to a fishing hook. Get the sack, first recorded in 1825, probably came from French though it existed in Middle Dutch. The reference here is to a workman's sac ("bag") in which he carried his tools and which was given back to him when he was fired. Also see give someone the air.
See also: ax, get

get the sack

see under get the ax.
See also: get, sack

hit the hay

Also, hit the sack. Go to bed, as in I usually hit the hay after the eleven o'clock news, or I'm tired, let's hit the sack. The first colloquial expression dates from the early 1900s, the variant from about 1940.
See also: hay, hit

sack out

Go to sleep, go to bed, as in We sacked out about midnight. This slangy idiom is a verbal use of the noun sack, slang for "bed" since about 1940; it alludes to a sleeping bag and appears in such similar phrases as in the sack, in bed, and sack time, bedtime.
See also: out, sack

sad sack

A singularly inept person, as in Poor George is a hopeless sad sack. This term alludes to a cartoon character, Sad Sack, invented by George Baker in 1942 and representing a soldier in ill-fitting uniform who failed at whatever he tried to do. It was soon transferred to clumsily inept civilians.
See also: sack, sad

hit the sack

INFORMAL or

hit the hay

mainly AMERICAN, INFORMAL
If someone hits the sack, they go to bed. We were tired, so we only half-unpacked the car and then hit the sack. Do you want me to take you up to your bed? Are you ready to hit the hay? Note: In the past, people sometimes used sacks and hay as bedding.
See also: hit, sack

hit the hay

go to bed. informal
See also: hay, hit

hit the sack

go to bed. informal
See also: hit, sack

hold the sack

bear an unwelcome responsibility. North American
See also: hold, sack

sad sack

an inept blundering person. informal, chiefly US
See also: sack, sad

hit the ˈsack/ˈhay

(informal) go to bed: I think it’s time to hit the sack. Sack and hay both refer to simple beds. In the past a bed was often just a sack or piece of rough cloth with hay inside. Sailors in the navy also slept in hammocks (= a type of bed hung between two posts, etc.) similar to sacks.
See also: hay, hit, sack

give somebody/get the ˈsack

(informal) tell somebody/be told to leave a job, usually because of something that you have done wrong: If you don’t work harder you’ll get the sack.She gave him the sack because he was always late.This may refer to a servant losing their job. They were given their sack (= bag) of belongings and told to leave the house.
See also: get, give, sack, somebody

sack out

v. Slang
To sleep or go to sleep: After a long day at work, I sacked out on the couch.
See also: out, sack

fart sack

n. one’s bed. (Military. Apparently a place where one can break wind at will. Usually objectionable.) Come on! Get out of the fart sack and get moving!
See also: fart, sack

get the sack

and get the ax
tv. to be dismissed from one’s employment. Poor Tom got the sack today. He’s always late. If I miss another day, I’ll get the ax.
See also: get, sack

get the ax

verb
See also: ax, get

hit the hay

and hit the sack
tv. to go to bed. Time to go home and hit the hay! Let’s hit the sack. We have to get an early start in the morning.
See also: hay, hit

hit the sack

verb
See also: hit, sack

nut up

1. in. to go crazy; to go nuts. I’ve got to have a vacation soon, or I’m going to nut up.
2. and sack up in. get courage; to grow some balls. Come on, man! Nut up! Stand up for yourself! Sack up and let’s go win this game.
See also: nut, up

sack up

verb
See nut up
See also: sack, up

sack

1. n. a bed. I was so tired I could hardly find my sack.
2. tv. to dismiss someone from employment; to fire someone. If I do that again, they’ll sack me.
3. and the sack n. a dismissal. (Always with the in this sense.) The boss gave them all the sack.
4. tv. in football, to tackle the quarterback behind the line of scrimmage. I tried to sack him, but he was too fast.
5. n. the completion of a tackle in football. Andy made the sack on the ten-yard line.

the sack

verb
See sack
See also: sack

sack out

in. to go to bed or go to sleep. (see also sacked out.) It’s time for me to sack out.
See also: out, sack

sack rat

n. someone who spends a lot of time in bed; someone who does not ever seem to get enough sleep. Tom is such a sack rat. He can’t seem to get enough sleep.
See also: rat, sack

sack time

1. n. a period of time spent in bed. I need more sack time than most people.
2. n. time to go to bed. Okay, gang, it’s sack time. Go home so I can get some sleep!
See also: sack, time

sacked out

mod. asleep. Here it is ten o’clock, and you are still sacked out!
See also: out, sack

sad sack

n. a sad person; a listless or depressed person. Tom always looks like such a sad sack.
See also: sack, sad
References in periodicals archive ?
Thanks to the use of tough farm polythene, the Green Sack range offers up to 10 times the tear resistance of other premium brand refuse sacks, says BPI.
Because of low overhead, both urban and rural families are offered the opportunity to create income and employment by utilizing sacks.
Both coated and uncoated IC STAR sacks can be produced using the new process, which has the additional advantage of ensuring a tightly sealed sack bottom.
Ormoc South District Farmer-Irrigators Service Cooperative-73 sacks seeds and 146 sacks fertilizers;
People can drop off their sacks at 15 points across the city on November 28 and 29.
Two: If the club wants me out they have to sack me, because I am not running away from my responsibility.
Nappy sacks are thin, plastic sacks used to dispose of soiled nappies but many parents tend to store them close to the cot.
He was lying in his cot with a handful of nappy sacks scattered around him and one was covering his face.
In these pages, Sacks is always on the move, leaping adroitly from one topic to the next.
Heavy duty and industry sacks have gained importance during the past years.
Previous year, Phillips played in all 16 games for the Broncos and posted 10 sacks, 36 tackles, one interception, five passes defensed and two forced fumbles.
Capable of collating and packing up to 80 pre-packs into outer sacks per minute, the system overcomes common problems typically seen with other systems, as explained by Paul Wilkinson, Pacepacker's Business Development Manager: "We saw a gap in the market for a collator which would continuously support the pre-packed bulk goods as they were entering the outer sack.
PHILADELPHIA head coach Andy Reid is rumoured to be getting the sack at the end of this season and his quarterback Nick Foles could be sacked on several occasions against Cincinnati tonight, writes Phil Agius.
After leaving PayPal right after it was purchased by eBay, Sacks fast-tracked his own ventures.
As more and more people run out of their free issue sacks, the problem will increase and recycling targets will not be met.