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Popular UK expression, especially 20 or thirty years ago = when your life or a situation is fast deteriorating or going rapidly downhill

Tubes = probably has its origins in toilet tubes or pipes
We were good at first but our relationship is going down the tubes

Our season has gone totally down the tubes and looks like we'll be relegated
by notquitepatrick February 21, 2020
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Aug 4 Word of the Day
Lying flat refers to a defeatist lifestyle in Chin, where people stop working, desiring material acquisition, and tap out of any social life ā€“ sometimes for good. By lying flat, young people are participating in a kind of non-cooperation movement, rather than surrendering themselves to China's oppressive work culture where they see little hope of social mobility.
Iā€™m not going to try to get a better job so I can afford to start a family, Iā€™m just lying flat.
by Freeo11 June 04, 2021
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2
Another way of saying that something is really going to pot -- when you say such-and-such is going down the tube, it is spiraling downhill extremely rapidly.
Man this drone flight is really going down the tube...O FUCK, There's a tree!!! (*CRASH!!!*)

That woman's performance on American Idol started to go down the tube when she forgot a critical lyric to the song she was performing.
via giphy
by Telephony October 08, 2018
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