1. (also to the fritz) of a person, unhealthy, out of sorts.
|‘Suppose’ in Star of Hope (Ossining, NY) Nov. 253/3: Would Santa Claus be on the ‘fritz’ / If we never had any snow?|
|Beat It 70: They are putting all our millionaires on the fritz.|
|Mutt & Jeff 3 Aug. [synd. strip] Say, your hair is a triple to the fritz — would you like a hair cut?|
|Sacramento Bee (CA) 28 Apr. 32/6: A man gets two or three times as much coin — always on the fritz.|
|(con. 1920s) Studs Lonigan (1936) 192: Reilley wouldn’t be as hard this time, with his dukes on the fritz. [Ibid.] 320: Even if it didn’t kill you, it might make you blind, or put your heart, liver, guts or kidneys on the fritz for life.Young Manhood in|
|What’s In It For Me? 89: Your memory go on the fritz or something?|
|(con. 1920s–40s) in Rebel Voices.|
2. (also away to the fritz) of an object, not functioning properly; thus antonym off the fritz, working; note extrapolation in cit. 1914 combining fritz with on the blink under blink n.1 .
|Out for the Coin 83: I catch your words, Murf, but the meaning is away to the fritz.|
|Torchy 309: What happened to Europe; was it on the fritz?|
|Ade’s Fables 208: The Market had gone Blooey. [...] The Whole List was on the Blinkety Fritz.‘The New Fable of the Aerial Performer’ in|
|Lincoln (NE) Daily News 2 Aug. 3-A: All o’ dis stuff puts de macin’ gag t’ de friz.|
|Perrysburg Jrnl (Wood Co., OH) 22 May 2/1: It’s put this con life of our on the fritz, for fair!|
|Hand-made Fables 29–30: All the cherished plans of the respected Parents were unmistakably on the Fritz.|
|Hobo’s Hornbook 95: Things are dull in San Francisco [...] On the fritz in Kansas City.‘Everywhere You Go’ in|
|Mine Enemy Grows Older (1959) 20: He not only had one [a heart], but it was on the fritz.|
|There Must Be a Pony! 263: Andy drove [...] to get Cecelia whose car was on the fritz.|
|Reinhart in Love (1963) 27: I see you got the car off the Fritz, Carlo, and thank you.|
|Faggots 346: The dummy only asked for a new wrist watch. Her own had gone on the fritz.|
|Stand (1990) 1285: Our TV went on the fritz.|
|Cat’s Eye (1989) 388: The air-conditioning is on the fritz and the air on the plane is overheated.|
|Online Sl. Dict. 🌐 on the fritz adj 1. to be broken or to not function properly. (“My car is on the fritz again.”).|
|Dirty Words [ebook] Joe opens his eyes to make sure the IV machine wasn’t going on the fritz again.‘Angelo Death’ in|
3. (also fritzer) of a situation, position, job, in jeopardy.
|Life In Sing Sing 248: Fritzer. Not good.|
|Knocking the Neighbors 179: Certain Stiffs who hurried home before Midnight and wore White Mufflers, were trying to put the Town on the Fritz and Can all the Live Ones.|
|(con. 1900s) Elmer Gantry 177: I’ll sit down front and put his show on the fritz.|
4. (also on the fritter) of machinery, broken down, not working.
|Life In Sing Sing 261: I went to the coast with a mob of paper-layers, but graft was on the fritter.|
|Argot: Dict. of Und. Sl.|
|Muscle for the Wing 115: My TV’s on the fritz.|
|Indep. on Sun. Culture 5 Sept. 5: The car radio being on the fritz again, meant no FM reception.|
|(con. 1964–8) Cold Six Thousand 195: The camera goes on the fritz [...] so the count guys can get the skim out and retally it.|
|Knocking the Neighbors 204: She married a Good Man and put him on the Fritz.|
|Ring Nov. 10: on the fritz or on the bum—Very poor.in|
|Living Rough 110: I can just imagine what I’ll look like in five or ten years time if I’m still on the fritz.|
to spoil, to render out of order, to put a stop to.
|Actors’ Boarding House (1906) 148: They ‘put it on the fritzerine for fair. [Ibid.] 359: What with me ketchin’ ’em [...] tearin’ up the bedspreads to use fur makeup towels, they’re puttin’ the place on the fritz!|
|Cunning Linguist (1973) 138: My main thought had been to destroy the Transmitter. Put it on the fritz.|
|(con. early 1950s) L.A. Confidential 404: You give me that and I’ll put the fritz to everything Captain Exley has.|