Some time ago I wrote down "lie one on" with this meaning for a flashcard; I must have read it somewhere, probably in a book, but I don't remember where. After a couple of months I wanted to look up the phrase again, but couldn't find it anymore. It doesn't seem to be listed in a single dictionary (also not in my American slang dictionary) and I can't find it on the Web. Does this expression really exist? Unfortunately, because I don't remember where I found it I can't give any context.

1 Answer 1


The expression is "tie (not lie) one on."

Its origins are somewhat disputed, with some claiming that it references a cowboy tying his horse to a hitching post before going into a saloon to get drunk.

Regardless, yes, it is a euphemism for getting drunk or having an alcoholic drink.

  • I did find half-a-dozen written instances of laid one on last night in Google Books. But set against 927 instances of tied one on last night I'm inclined to think that's just "inaccurate copying", rather than a true "dialectal variation". Nov 17, 2017 at 19:56
  • @FumbleFingers laid one on is actually a separate phrase, but it refers to the act of punching, hitting hard, or kissing someone.
    – user65201
    Nov 17, 2017 at 20:00

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