I am going to strip his gears

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Senior Member
“I’m gonna take over,” The Kid said confidently. “Gonna strip his gears and leave him at the Cadillac Ranch. You stick with me, Trashman or whatever the fuck ya call yaself.
Source: The Stand by Stephen King
Context: The character, nicknamed The Kid is speaking to an arsonist, nicknamed Trashcan Man about his plan to take over from the bad man ('Evil Master').

Is this expression common amongst youngsters? I guess it could mean to nail someone, to put someone to pasture, to send someone around dead man's curve, right?

Thank you.
  • suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    Never heard of it.
    But I'm not "young". (Neither is King, being 11 years older than me!). I don't know if it has any wider currency but here it suggests to me taking the power from Evil Master. Gears are familiar to to any car driver or cyclist, and stripped gears are gears with the teeth so worn that they no longer work. Quite a clear metaphor whether King coined it or not.

    Edit to add: it's definition #7 in WR dictionary for strip.


    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    I think it's another use by King that's not standard, either now or 40 years ago.
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