(the )silk

(the )silk
   a parachute
   Euphemistic only in the phrase on the silk, referring to a military air crew obliged to abandon an aircraft in flight:
    ... you've got to stick to your own air space or ride down on the silk. (Hackett, 1978 — if you collide you will crash)
   Whence the figurative hit the silk, to seek to escape from or avoid a calamity, as by using a parachute:
    In markets like this, if that happens, everyone'11 hit the silk at once and no one'll get out the door. (M. Thomas, 1987)

How not to say what you mean: A dictionary of euphemisms. . 2014.

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