mine

(redirected from Ì)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

canary in a coal mine

Something or someone who, due to sensitivity to his, her, or its surroundings, acts as an indicator and early warning of possible adverse conditions or danger. Refers to the former practice of taking caged canaries into coal mines. The birds would die if methane gas became present and thereby alert miners to the danger. Wildlife in disaster movies assumes the role of the canary in a coal mine, fleeing the scene when catastrophe is imminent. Unaware that he had been given the test drug, John was used as a canary in a coal mine to see its effects on the human mind.
See also: canary, coal, mine

get (one's)

1. To receive the due punishment (for something) that one deserves. Don't worry about those stool pigeons, we'll make sure they get theirs when the time is right. She cheated off me during the test? Oh, she'll get hers, alright!
2. To become wealthy or financially successful. After growing up in poverty, Jim was determined to get his no matter what it took.
See also: get

gold mine

1. Literally, a mine where gold ore is found and excavated. Also written as "goldmine." More than 500 workers have become trapped in a gold mine after a minor earthquake cause the mineshaft to collapse.
2. An enterprise, opportunity, or resource that is or has the potential to be extremely profitable. The social networking site has since become a veritable gold mine, attracting millions of new users every month and generating staggering amounts of money from ad revenue. If we can secure the merger deal with the pharmaceutical giant in London, I'm sure it will prove to be a gold mine!
3. A person, place, or thing containing a plentiful amount of something valuable or desirable. Who knew that my grandfather's attic would turn out to be a gold mine of priceless antiques? This database is a gold mine for anyone interested in medical research trials. Our professor is a gold mine of information about medieval French literature.
See also: gold, mine

mine of information

Someone or something that contains a lot of knowledge about a particular topic. You should ask Amanda for advice about your cake recipe—she's a mine of information about baking.
See also: information, mine, of

back to the salt mines

Cliché time to return to work, school, or something else that might be unpleasant. (The phrase implies that the speaker is a slave who works in the salt mines.) It's one o'clock and lunch break is over. Back to the salt mines. School starts in the fall, so then it's back to the salt mines again.
See also: back, mine, salt

go back to the salt mines

Fig. to return to one's work. (Jocular; fig. on the image of menial labor working in salt mines.) It's late. I have to go back to the salt mines. What time do you have to go back to the salt mines Monday morning?
See also: back, mine, salt

(a) gold mine of information

Fig. someone or something that is full of information. Grandfather is a gold mine of information about World War I. The new encyclopedia is a positive gold mine of useful information.
See also: gold, information, mine, of

Make mine something.

I wish to have the thing named. (The something can be a particular food or drink, a flavor of a food, a size of a garment, or a type of almost anything. Most typically used for food or drink.) Bill: I want some pie. Yes, I'd like apple. Tom: Make mine cherry. Waiter: Would you care for some dessert? The ice cream is homemade. Tom: Yes, indeed. Make mine chocolate.
See also: make, mine

mine for something

to dig into the ground in search of a mineral, a metal, or an ore. The prospectors ended up mining for coal. What are they mining for in those hills?
See also: mine

mine of information

Fig. someone or something that is full of information. Grandfather is a mine of information about World War II. The new search engine is a positive mine of useful information.
See also: information, mine, of

sitting on a gold mine

Fig. in control of something very valuable; in control of something potentially very valuable. When I found out how much the old book was worth, I realized that I was sitting on a gold mine. Mary's land is valuable. She is sitting on a gold mine.
See also: gold, mine, on, sitting

What's yours is mine, and what's mine is mine.

Prov. A humorous way of saying, "Everything belongs to me."; (A jocular variant of "What's yours is mine, and what's mine is yours," an expression of generosity.) I know you won't mind lending me your radio. After all, what's yours is mine, and what's mine is mine. The thief took his confederate's share of the money they had stolen, saying, "What's yours is mine, and what's mine is mine."
See also: and, mine

You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.

Fig. You do a favor for me and I'll do a favor for you.; If you do something for me that I cannot do for myself, I will do something for you that you cannot do for yourself. I'll grab the box on the top shelf if you will creep under the table and pick up my pen. You scratch my back, and I'll scratch yours.
See also: and, back, scratch

Your guess is as good as mine.

Inf. I do not know. Jane: Are there any good movies playing tonight? Alan: Your guess is as good as mine. Jill: How long should we bake this pie? Jane: Your guess is as good as mine.
See also: good, guess, mine

Your place or mine?

Inf. an expression asking someone about whose dwelling should be the site of a rendezvous. (Often associated with a sudden or spontaneous sexual encounter.) Bill: So, do you want to go somewhere? Mary: Your place or mine? Bill: I was thinking of watching a movie at home. You're place or mine? Mary: Okay, I'll rent the movie and we'll watch it at your place.
See also: place

your guess is as good as mine

(spoken)
I do not know the answer to that question If you want to know why she left me, well, your guess is as good as mine.
See also: good, guess, mine

Your guess is as good as mine.

  (informal)
something that you say when you do not know the answer to a question 'How long do you think this job will take?' 'Your guess is as good as mine.'
See be anybody's guess
See also: good, guess, mine

a mine of information

a person or a book with a lot of information (often + about ) He's a mine of information about the cinema.
See also: information, mine, of

You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.

  also I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine.
something that you say to tell someone that you will help them if they will help you I do have some information you might be interested in, but what can you offer me in return? You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.
See also: and, back, scratch

back to the salt mines

Resume work, usually with some reluctance, as in With my slavedriver of a boss, even on Saturdays it's back to the salt mines. This term alludes to the Russian practice of punishing prisoners by sending them to work in the salt mines of Siberia. Today the term is only used ironically. [Late 1800s] Also see keep one's nose to the grindstone.
See also: back, mine, salt

gold mine

A rich, plentiful source of wealth or some other desirable thing, as in That business proved to be a gold mine, or She's a gold mine of information about the industry. [First half of 1800s]
See also: gold, mine

your guess is as good as mine

I don't know any more than you do, as in As for when he'll arrive, your guess is as good as mine. [1920s]
See also: good, guess, mine

back to the salt mines

phr. back to the workplace. Well, it’s Monday morning. Back to the salt mines.
See also: back, mine, salt

Your guess is as good as mine

sent. I don’t know either. I don’t know. Your guess is as good as mine.
See also: good, guess, mine

Your place or mine?

interrog. Shall we carry on an affair at your dwelling or mine? Your place or mine? It doesn’t matter.
See also: place

salt mines

Humorous characterization of one's job. Salt deposits are often found underground, and even in the last century prisoners were condemned to long years or lifetimes of excavating the substance. Little wonder that it became a metaphor for hard or otherwise unpleasant work, as in, as you return to the office after lunch, “Well, it's back to the salt mines.”
See also: mine, salt