drop like a hot potato, to

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drop someone or something like a hot potato

Fig. to disassociate oneself with someone or something instantly. When we learned of the conviction, we dropped him like a hot potato. I dropped the idea like a hot potato when the big boss said he didn't like it.
See also: drop, hot, like, potato
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

drop like a hot potato, to

To abandon as quickly as possible; to ditch. The simile is based on the fact that potatoes, which hold a fair amount of water, retain heat very well, as anyone who has so burned his or her fingers will testify. The figurative hot potato is likely to be an embarrassing subject or ticklish problem. The term originated as a colloquialism in the early nineteenth century. It probably was a cliché by the time W. Somerset Maugham wrote, “She dropped him, but not like a hot brick or a hot potato,” meaning that she let him down gently (Cakes and Ale, 1930).
See also: drop, hot, like
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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