also phone up" or "phone someone up
  • 1Contact someone by telephone.

    with object ‘he phoned her at work’
    no object ‘she phoned about twenty minutes ago’
    • ‘She phoned them up and demanded they redeliver.’
    • ‘My Egyptian friend had phoned me up and asked if I would like to go with her to see the Agricultural College where she studies, and meet her fellow students.’
    • ‘The PFY dutifully phones and a ring sound emerges from the heart of the machine.’
    • ‘I phoned them up and challenged them on this and they admitted it.’
    • ‘At least I had the sense of calling in sick this morning and when my boss phoned me up to check on me he asked if I wanted tomorrow off as well, which I gladly agreed to.’
    • ‘It takes a couple of seconds to phone a team doctor and check if you can take something.’
    • ‘Frank phoned me up after Silverstone last year and things started to firm up over the winter.’
    • ‘Sloan, who organised the music, wrote a wish list of all her favourite bands in the world and then started phoning them up.’
    • ‘I got home from the hospital and they phoned me up immediately to say they were taking her to theatre, so I had to go straight back.’
    • ‘He said: ‘A friend phoned me up and told me there was a possibility of floods.’’
    • ‘I wasn't sure anything had happened until friends started phoning me up.’
    • ‘Feeling really tired, I phoned Lucy up to say that I couldn't make it today & I have spent most of the day lazing around, reading the paper mainly.’
    • ‘I have people phoning me up with their concerns.’
    • ‘She phoned me up and we pondered it for a few minutes, before realising the PC in question didn't have any speakers.’
    • ‘People have been phoning me up and stopping me in the street and saying how sorry they are to hear about what has happened to us.’
    • ‘Then you come home and phone a friend to grumble about this speech you've got to make.’
    • ‘A representative of the British Olympic Association actually phoned me up to ask if he was making a political statement.’
    • ‘She phoned me up at home to ask if I could come in at 3.40!’
    • ‘They phoned us up today asking if we do get to do the show, would be want to play live or play to a backing tape and if we can we're going to play live.’
    • ‘Some people have phoned us up and have come in and made statements.’
    telephone, call, call up, give someone a call, give someone a ring, ring, ring up, get someone on the phone, get on the phone to, get, reach, dial, make a call, place a call, make a call to, place a call to
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    1. 1.1phone it ininformal Work or perform without much effort, interest, or enthusiasm.
      ‘I think of my playing as committed—I can't remember ever phoning it in at any performance’
      • ‘Anthony Edwards and Gary Sinise both phone it in, and Dominic West has little trouble playing the drunk.’
      • ‘I can question his choice of material (as I often do), but I certainly can't complain that he's phoning it in.’
      • ‘Without a muse-cum-taskmaster Timbaland is tempted to phone it in, as he does on Under Construction II, a sequel not worthy of the name.’
      • ‘Yeah, it's August, but someone's really phoning it in at the Guardian.’
      • ‘Well, I guess I'd be phoning it in too if I knew that after my scene wrapped I could go back to partying on my yacht with my movie star friends on Lake Como.’
      • ‘I talked to a newsperson who said the U.S. military is just phoning it in.’
      • ‘In fact, I think Jumbah is totally phoning it in.’
      • ‘The band still makes some great songs; when the group misses, it's by trying to do too much, not by phoning it in Stones-like.’
      • ‘The theater district's Chimichurri Grill offers an Argentine menu that doesn't just phone it in.’
      • ‘On this collection Sarah Vaughan sounds like she's phoning it in - you can almost hear her yawning.’
      • ‘Jesse Ventura is brought up, but Dave says towards the end he phoned it in.’
      • ‘He seems content to just phone it in, and why shouldn't he?’
      • ‘Renée Zellweger's mannered neuroticism is becoming increasingly annoying and Catherine Zeta-Jones phones it in.’
      • ‘Comfort can easily lead to complacency, and for a band rooted in punk's Riot Grrrl movement, there's no greater sin than phoning it in.’
      • ‘Bronson simply phones it in and collects his check, though probably having his wife Jill Ireland as co-producer was a nice inducement.’
      • ‘So as they say in showbiz speech, he's phoning it in tonight.’
      • ‘Because Bill Barol and his beloved Blather Blog has returned after a months-long hiatus, including a few weeks there when he was obviously just sort of phoning it in, not that we don't all do that on occasion, of course.’
      • ‘Other people see talent and virtuosity; I see a narcissist who's phoning it in.’
      • ‘Dangers never succumbs to the temptation to phone it in, and he never relegates himself to simply giving in and playing generic pop music.’
      • ‘Sure, the official first game of the season took place, but so did four preseason games and another contest where the Rangers phoned it in against their Oklahoma City affiliate.’