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Difference between Be on the hop and Go on the hop

be on the hop —(coll.)

1. be very busy:

  • I’d been on the hop ever since morning, for being in love with Anita was a strenuous calling.

2. play truant; stay away from school, etc.:

  • Remember that day I was on the hop from school? I went down to the city that day…

go on the hop — = be on the hop 2:

  • Ronan used to go “on the hop” (skipping school) when he was a teenager.

Note: Neither expression correlates in meaning with the phrase catch someone on the hop(coll.) catch a person unprepared; take smb. by surprise:

  • You’ve caught me on the hop, I’m afraid—give me five minutes to get ready.