up a tree


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up a tree

1. In a troublesome or challenging situation. I have no idea how I'm going to get out of this contract—I'm really up a tree now.
2. Drunk. Do you remember last night at the bar at all? You were really up a tree!
See also: tree, up
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

up a tree

 
1. confused; without an answer to a problem; in difficulty. This whole business has me up a tree. I'm up a tree, and I need some help.
2. intoxicated. Only two glasses of booze and he was up a tree for sure. My buddy here is up a tree and needs a place to crash for the night.
See also: tree, up
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

up a tree

In a difficult situation, as in They found the drugs in his suitcase, so he was up a tree. This expression alludes to an animal, such as a raccoon or squirrel, that climbs a tree for refuge from attackers, which then surround the tree so it cannot come down. [Colloquial; early 1800s]
See also: tree, up
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

up a tree

AMERICAN, INFORMAL
If you are up a tree, you are in a difficult situation. Without my wine guide, I'd have been up a tree.
See also: tree, up
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

up a tree

in a difficult situation without escape; cornered. informal, chiefly North American
See also: tree, up
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

tree

n. marijuana. Grass, tree, bush. It’s all pot!

up a tree

1. mod. confused; without an answer to a problem; in difficulty. This whole business has me up a tree.
2. mod. alcohol intoxicated. My buddy here is up a tree and needs a crash for the night.
See also: tree, up
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.

up a tree

Informal
In a situation of great difficulty or perplexity; helpless.
See also: tree, up
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

up a tree

Stranded or cornered. This term is clearly American in origin and dates from about 1800. “I had her in my power—up a tree, as the Americans say,” wrote Thackeray (Major Gahagan, 1838). The original allusion is to an animal, such as a raccoon, that has taken refuge from attackers by climbing a tree.
See also: tree, up
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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