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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

(as) slippery as an eel

Devious, scheming, and untrustworthy—and difficult or impossible to apprehend or pin down. The notorious criminal has proven to be as slippery as an eel for police, eluding capture once again. Companies like this are slippery as eels, coming up with all sorts of elaborate means of getting around regulations.
See also: eel, slippery

*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 ?
The weather service said fog and drizzle are creating low visibilities and slippery roadways from the summit east through Cheyenne, Wyoming, including I-80.
The logical slippery slope is inevitable once euthanasia is legalized and becomes commonplace, as we can see in what has happened in the Benelux countries.
Easter Cup Ladbrokes (Shelbourne Park, final March 19): 3 Jaytee Jet, 7-2 Slippery Fred, 4 Ballydoyle Honey, 8 Lenson Sanchez, Sidarian Vega, 10 Leave At Dawn, Peregrine Falcon, Skywalker Rory, 20 Notorious Ben, 25 Jaytee Valencia, 50 Faypoint Rush, Only For Life (e-w 1/4 1,2,3).
LiquiGlide was founded in 2012 to help manufacturers and packaging companies eliminate waste and create better consumer experiences by providing them with unique slippery coatings that enable their viscous products to easily slide from their packaging.
Perfectly slippery dark particles should have a self-interaction cross section (a measure of how strongly they interact) near 0 [cm.
INGA replies: As wooden floors can be slippery for dogs I would recommend buying lots of non-slip rugs.
Consider the fact that slippery walkway conditions do not necessarily cause falls.
Norton and Stockton played the better football and took advantage of the slippery surface.
Ogwen Valley Mountain Rescue volunteers were called out on Saturday night and used ropes to help the trio traverse slippery rocks which they'd encountered.
Coroner John Leckey said it was a slippery environment and observed that older farmers figured high in the casualty statistics.
Summary: ABU DHABI - The National Centre for Meteorology and Seismology warned people today to be cautious while travelling along the highways as the roads may become slippery due to possible rains.
LAST summer we put down decking over our patio, but while it looks good it has become very slippery.
A MAN in distress waving a red T-shirt was rescued from a slippery path above a waterfall.
Generally, four parts can typically be distinguished as a leaf-like lid, a collar-like peristome, a slippery zone and a digestive zone.
A WOULD-BE rally racer is driving himself down a slippery slope, a judge warned.