off the subject

Also found in: Acronyms, Idioms.
References in classic literature ?
When he was with her he was never off the subject. The other, a black-haired boy with large ears, said nothing at all but always managed to get her into the darkness, where he began to kiss her.
Still anxious to keep off the subject of affection, on which she believed him to have become crazed, she made another effort to keep his mind elsewhere.
Elinor looked surprised at his emotion; but trying to laugh off the subject, she said to him, "Do not you know my sister well enough to understand what she means?
The only thing I could not do, was to keep off the subject of the Moonstone!
Sometimes he sheered off the subject, or turned the conversation by pretending not to understand, but generally he answered all I asked most frankly.
As no explanation was forthcoming, she shook off the subject as too difficult for a girl, and led him further into the wood, pausing every now and then at some particularly beautiful or familiar combination of the trees.
`Well, there was Mystery,' the Mock Turtle replied, counting off the subjects on his flappers, `--Mystery, ancient and modern, with Seaography: then Drawling--the Drawling-master was an old conger-eel, that used to come once a week: HE taught us Drawling, Stretching, and Fainting in Coils.'
All the five people where in the room even when not being clicked and stood close to the photographer to be included in the reflection off the subject's corneas.
In fact the President has begged off from mentioning the details so as not to tip off the subject,'' Undersecretary Abigail Valte, deputy presidential spokesperson, said over government-run dzRB.
That was a line from Emmerdale as Jai warned Declan off the subject as they discussed the latter's intention to include the escapade in his best man's speech.
So, if you notice yourself or your spouse getting off the subject, come back to the specific goal."
In the meantime, there will be talk, controversy, adaptations and new directions, much of which will help shift the debate currently dominating the nation off the subject of Mr Brown's future as Prime Minister.