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slippery slope

A situation in which some behavior or action will eventually lead to a worse form of the same behavior or action, or a disastrous outcome. Eating that piece of cake is a slippery slope that could lead to you completely abandoning your diet. Verbal abuse is often a slippery slope that leads to physical abuse.
See also: slippery, slope

be as slippery as an eel

To be devious, scheming, and untrustworthy—and difficult to apprehend. Of course that guy took everyone's money and left town—he's as slippery as an eel!
See also: eel, slippery

on a slippery slope

In a situation in which some behavior or action will eventually lead to a worse form of the same behavior or action. We've been on a slippery slope of borrowing more money to pay off the debts we already owe. Activists fear that this latest legislation will put us on a slippery slope to stifling free speech.
See also: on, slippery, slope

*slippery as an eel

devious and untrustworthy, but impossible to catch. (*Also: as ~.) Don't sign a lease with that landlord; I think he's as slippery as an eel. The con artist was slippery as an eel. Although he defrauded many people, he never went to prison.
See also: eel, slippery

slippery customer

1. Fig. a clever and deceitful customer. Watch out for that guy with the big padded coat. He may snatch something. He's a real slippery customer.
2. Fig. a slippery creature. This little fish is a slippery customer. Get me something to scoop it back into its bowl.
See also: customer, slippery

slippery slope

a dangerous pathway or route to follow; a route that leads to trouble. The matter of euthanasia is a slippery slope with both legal and moral considerations.
See also: slippery, slope

slippery as an eel

Elusive, devious, as in When it comes to talking about his investments, Jim's slippery as an eel. This simile, first recorded about 1412, alludes to the eel's skin, which has tiny scales and is quite slippery when wet.
See also: eel, slippery

slippery slope

A dangerous course, one that leads easily to catastrophe, as in He's on a slippery slope, compromising his values to please both the bosses and the union . This metaphoric expression alludes to traversing a slick hillside, in constant danger of falling. [Mid-1900s]
See also: slippery, slope

slippery as an eel

1. If someone is as slippery as an eel, they are difficult to catch or take hold of. When his opponent is on the attack, he is as slippery as an eel.
2. If someone is as slippery as an eel, they are clever and able to think quickly, but you cannot trust them. He was as clever as a fox and as slippery as an eel. Note: You can also describe someone as a slippery eel. He himself admits that he is regarded as a slippery eel — a man who constantly changes his mind.
See also: eel, slippery

a slippery slope

COMMON A slippery slope is a course of action which is likely to lead to failure or serious trouble. It's a slippery slope. You give in to one demand and soon find that you're doing exactly what they want. The company started down the slippery slope of believing that they knew better than the customer, with the inevitable disastrous results. Note: You can also say that someone is on a slippery slope or on the slippery slope. These young people may already be on the slippery slope to criminality.
See also: slippery, slope

slippery slope

an idea or course of action which will lead inevitably to something unacceptable, wrong, or disastrous.
1998 Spectator Those of us who feared that devolution would not assuage nationalist sentiment but turn out to be the slippery slope to separatism have a good chance of being proved right.
See also: slippery, slope

(as) slippery as an ˈeel

(informal) dishonest and good at not answering questions, etc: The man the police want to talk to is slippery as an eel, and has so far escaped arrest. OPPOSITE: (as) straight as a die (2)
See also: eel, slippery

the slippery ˈslope

a situation or way of behaving that could quickly lead to danger, disaster, failure, etc: Starting with shoplifting, he was soon on the slippery slope towards a life of crime.
See also: slippery, slope
References in periodicals archive ?
Thus, Nashe endorses a sense of prose in which the meaning is unstable and, Barbour argues, in its slipperiness can bear association with various forms of imagination (dreams) or treachery (74-75).
Certain numbers display a similar slipperiness, eluding the ingenious snares set by mathematicians bent on distinguishing prime numbers from composite numbers as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Contract award notice: Delivery of salt to combat slipperiness on roads (road salt) in the years 2017 - 2021 in the amount of 90 000 Mg.
Contract notice: "Delivery of road salt to combat slipperiness on provincial roads in season 2017/2018" - case no.
The extent of the ConDem Government's slipperiness is clear from a Parliamentary Answer revealing 140,000 of the 187,210 in uniform will suffer a real fall in their living standards.
1: Execution Of The Order Consisting In Combating The Slipperiness And Clearing Of Voivodeship Roads No.
Contract notice: Providing fluxes for slipperiness winter 2017-2018.
ELECTRONIC devices in brooms used by the British curling teams to test ice slipperiness may now save lives on frozen roads.
Contract notice: Slipperiness in district d720-central province of limburg.
He tested the slipperiness of a number of them in various states of decay to see if any were particularly hazardous.
As part of the contract must be performed: 1) snow removal in order to maintain patency of the places covered by the agreement, technology mechanical and manual, snow removal, mechanical with manual odgarnianiem depths of the reach of plows, 2) prevent the formation of slippery winter and elimination of slipperiness, through appropriate chemicals or materials uszarstniajacych - with particular emphasis on road junctions and pedestrian crossings, 3) removal and removal from roads heaps of snow and slush, 4) cleaning roads and other communal areas in the absence of the occurrence of the conditions zimowych.
This leaves the vagina prone to infection and abrasions as it has lost much of its natural slipperiness.
The tenderer must carry out construction of roads, streets, sidewalks, and parking lots of foot and snow cleaning works (if necessary slipperiness control works) Rapla field of nine (9) in the region (I - IX) in the period from 15.
And any besieged England team-picker will need James Bond's ability to wriggle out of a tight corner, plus the slipperiness of Coronation Street spiv Mike Baldwin.
Contract award notice: slipperiness municipality bladel 2016-2021.