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skate on thin ice

Meaning: If you're skating on thin ice, you're doing something risky, or you're in a situation that could quickly become dangerous.

For example:

  • Don't you think you'll be skating on thin ice if you go to the U.S. without getting health insurance? Medical care is incredibly expensive there.

  • Kenny's skating on thin ice. He's already on parole, and yet he's still driving around without a licence.

Origin: Probably related to the fact that skating on an ice-covered lake can be very dangerous if the ice is thin in places. It could easily break under the weight of a person, and the person could fall into the ice-cold water and drown.

Quick Quiz:

We'll be skating on thin ice if we go to the boss and
  1. ask for another pay rise
  2. give him a birthday present
  3. tell him what a good boss he is

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