get out of Dodge

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An allusion to Dodge City, Kansas, a busy cattle town in the late 19th century notorious for gunfighters, gambling, brothels and saloons. Possibly inspired by the radio and television series Gunsmoke (1952-1975).


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get out of Dodge (third-person singular simple present gets out of Dodge, present participle getting out of Dodge, simple past got out of Dodge, past participle gotten out of Dodge)

  1. (idiomatic) To leave, especially to leave a difficult or dangerous environment with all possible haste.
    • 1988 November 3, Hearings Before the Subcommittee on Public Lands, National Parks, and Forests of the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, United States Senate, One Hundredth Congress, 5, 1987, Volume 4, p. 94:
      The pulp mills, he predicts, "are going to just high-grade all the best trees and get the hell out of Dodge."
    • 1999, Robert Forrest Burgess, The Cave Divers[1], →ISBN, page 298:
      When Jasper surfaced, Skiles thought to himself, Woody will come through. He'll find the way. He always gets us out of predicaments like this. Now that he's back it's just a matter or gearing up, getting in the water and getting the hell out of Dodge.

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