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tight as a tick

Drunk, as in She was tight as a tick after just one glass of wine. This expression alludes to a tick engorged with the blood of the animals it feeds on. [Slang; mid-1800s]

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.