You’ll have to visit Dan’s (the other Dan) page to understand this:
Taking him with you is to pull the devil by the tail. The last time I took him along, he was so scammered, he queered the pitch. Up on the slang-tree when sober, he’s good-as-good. But, after a few pops from the flicker, he’s prone to lash and you might end up in the company of a cossack threatening to smash him in the head-rails and tie him up with the devil’s guts, at which point, he’ll be as close to you as a clinger on the lily-slang-tree.
Fun, albeit unintentional writing prompt.
clinger : a female dancing very close to her partner (1890)
cossack : a policeman (1850s)
pull the devil by the tail : to take a risk of ruin (ca. 1750)
the devil’s guts : a surveyor’s chain (1670s – 1700s)
flicker : a drinking glass (1700s)
good as good : extremely good ( 1850 )
head-rails : the teeth (nautical ; 1785)
lash : violence ( Australian ; 1916 )
scammered : tipsy ( 1840 )
slang-tree : a stage (1850-1950)
Lilly-slang-tree : ( I made this one up ; no meaning ; 2013 )