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go down the tubes

go down the tubes

Date: Dec 29 2011

Themes: Pop Culture


1. Quote - Listen to the quote and guess what the slang means.

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“I think the state of reality TV is going down the tubes.”

- Model and reality TV star Kimora Lee Simmons. (BET)

- 模特和电视真人秀明星吉莫拉·李·西蒙斯 (Kimora Lee Simmons)。


1. Definition - Study the definition.

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turn bad, lose quality, be destroyed

2. Use - Learn how the slang is used.

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When something goes down the tubes, it fails, turns bad, or disappears. If your plans go down the tubes, they don’t turn out the way you want. If a couple’s relationship goes down the tubes, it means the couple breaks up. And if reality TV goes down the tubes? It becomes boring, stupid, or just plain bad.
Some might argue that reality TV was never out of the tubes. That is, it has always been bad. But Kimora Lee Simmons, a fashion model who has appeared on reality TV herself in the past, thinks it’s only now starting to go down the tubes.

Can you guess where the expression go down the tubes comes from? It’s similar to go down the drain. If something literally goes down the tubes, it gets flushed or washed away. It travels through metal tubes, or pipes, with other bad stuff that nobody wants anymore.

Do you think television has gone down the tubes lately? What else is going down the tubes?


1. Examples - Hear some example sentences.

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“The NBA star’s career went down the tubes after he injured his knees.”

“I hope my grades don’t go down the tubes this semester.”

“Let’s stop fighting. I don’t want our friendship to go down the tubes.”


1. Winners - See who guessed the slang definition correctly.

The meaning is to fail or degenerate rapidly.
by candycandice
emi0808 to fail or become much worse.
by emi0808
Ahshan decline
by Ahshan
Manu4 Getting worse
by Manu4
fading; diminishing
by Bitten by an Arab bug
kotlesya it means the state of reality TV is going to fail or ruin
by kotlesya
CatcheR fail or not popular anymore.
by CatcheR

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Log in to Comment



I think Europe’s economy is going down the tubes…

06:27 PM Dec 29 2011 |



United States

I hope my plan for loss weight are not going dawn the tubes.

05:52 PM Dec 29 2011 |



Really its interesting, Thank you.

04:58 PM Dec 29 2011 |



İ hope my plans don`t do down this year.  

04:51 PM Dec 29 2011 |



hi are there anybody

02:52 PM Dec 29 2011 |



The relationship between him and me is going down the tubes(i think),maybe it doesn’t,ok,let it be !!!

02:23 PM Dec 29 2011 |




Kimora Simmons first and foremost I’d like to thank for using such a useful phrase and inspire today’s English, Baby lesson. Now that I know what going down the tubes means, it’d dawned on me that your comment is somewhat laughable.

I always saw you as one of the pioneers of despicable reality TV.  Your self-indulgent show “Kimora: Life in the Fab-lane” was like the “Fur Elise” for many aspiring and, glamour hungry wannabe actors. You’re like a mother figure for the likes of Snooki, all of the ‘Real housewives of orange county ‘actresses. Give us a break, you have failed to realized that you are in fact the “tube”


01:41 PM Dec 29 2011 |




Same meaning as gone to the dogs!

01:01 PM Dec 29 2011 |




If you procrastinate too much, your things-to-do list will go down the tube :)

12:06 PM Dec 29 2011 |




Let’s be honest: it’s been a while since televison has gone down the tubes. All those reality shows about celebrities are outrageous! What’s so funny about a popstar going to a hairdresser, to the mall or whatever? Big Brother is horrible as well. Unfortunately, in my country BB is a huge success, and it’s on his 12th edition, I guess.

Another thing in television that definitely went down the tubes: MTV. I DO miss the times when MTV used to play REAL music.

11:19 AM Dec 29 2011 |




go to ruin

11:18 AM Dec 29 2011 |



Russian Federation

Putin, the united russia and medvedev are going down the tubes, have a good trip Sealed

11:14 AM Dec 29 2011 |

1 person likes this



This site is nice for learning English, really useful. I hope it will never go down the tubes.

11:13 AM Dec 29 2011 |



United States

In my work place, the friendship between our colleage is seemed to go down the tubes since the dramas have been passing around recently. They talk behind other’s back. Someone even bites the hands that feed them, she or he has betrayed their boss by adsconding some of his or her employer’s money. The environment around my work place is going down the tubes and turning so bad that I don’t want to work there any more.

10:17 AM Dec 29 2011 |



I have a lot of plans for this year and I hope not all of them go down the tubes, it`d be desappointing

04:41 AM Dec 29 2011 |



i hope my pmr not going down the tubes this year

04:27 AM Dec 29 2011 |


United Arab Emirates

the media in my opinion is gone down the dirty tubes so no need to interest about them because we have our media ( Internet)

03:55 AM Dec 29 2011 |



when something more interesting than internet shows up  it is going down the tubes

03:11 AM Dec 29 2011 |




I found out that I don’t like TV station anymore, don’t you think internet is much more fun than TV, it’s wider than just mostly show which TV station has showed.

02:36 AM Dec 29 2011 |

1 person likes this

Sherry xu


That ’s vivid , the unlucky stuff always making us feel sick like going down the dirty and gloomy tubes.

02:14 AM Dec 29 2011 |

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