hit the bricks

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English[edit]

Verb[edit]

hit the bricks

  1. (idiomatic) To travel about, especially on foot.
    • 1949, Victor Riesel, "Inside Labor," St. Petersburg Times, 18 June, p. 30 (retrieved 24 June 2009):
      [T]housands of brewers, waiters and waitresses, bartenders, cooks, checkers, cashiers, dishwashers, hotel maids and bellmen, too, would be forced to hit the bricks in search of other work.
    • 2002, Jeff Larsen, "Short Trips: Shoreside walks in green and glittering Vancouver," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 17 Oct. (retrieved 24 June 2009):
      [H]undreds of joggers and walkers from the condos hit the bricks of the Coal Harbor Seawalk starting at 6 a.m. for their morning constitution around Stanley Park.
  2. (idiomatic) To leave or depart; to get out.
    • 2004, "No NHL? No NHL!!!," Washington Post, 20 Sept., p. D02 (retrieved 24 June 2009):
      Alas, Hancock did not have his receipt, so the shop owner told him to hit the bricks.
    • 2009, Tom Horgen, "Nightlife: Bingo is the game-o," Minneapolis Star-Tribune, 3 Apr. (retrieved 24 June 2009):
      On Friday and Saturday nights, the old-timers who usually populate the enormous room hit the bricks as an army of young people storm the hall to play "Cosmic Bingo."
  3. (idiomatic) To participate in a workplace strike or other job action; to participate in a public protest, especially one involving picketing.
    • 1947, "National Affairs: Waterfront Conchie," Time, 31 March:
      When Harry Bridges told his boys to hit the bricks, Charley was always up front in the longshoremen's wall of flesh. His picketing record in the bloody dockside strife of 1934 and in the all-out strike of 1937 was perfect.
    • 2002, Pete Donohue et al., "MTA and union push against strike deadline," New York Daily News, 16 Dec. (retrieved 24 June 2009):
      Queens bus driver Mousie Garcia, 30, said she doesn't want a strike but will hit the bricks if the MTA doesn't come through with no-strings-attached raises.

Synonyms[edit]