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bright-line

Especially in law, defined by clear terms, standards, and rules so as to avoid ambiguity or room for interpretation. Used especially as "bright-line rule" or "bright-line standard." After the economic crash, several bright-line rules were established.

bright shiny object

Something that is widely appealing or attention-grabbing for its superficial characteristics, but which is usually not useful, substantial, or long lasting. Recent technological advances seem to be just a series of bright shiny objects, consuming all of our attention for a while before something shinier comes along.
See also: bright, object

bright young thing

A young person who is exuberant, ambitious, and glamorous. A: "Daisy is a bright young thing, isn't she?" B: "I know! I wish I had an ounce of her verve and style."
See also: bright, thing, young

bright-line rule

In law, a clarification of ambiguity in rules and regulations, so that they cannot be interpreted in multiple ways. Since we have two different interpretations of this law, there should be a bright-line rule for it, if there isn't one already.
See also: rule

bright spark

A person who is regarded as clever or intelligent. The term can also be used sarcastically to mean the opposite. Primarily heard in UK, Australia, New Zealand. Timmy's the bright spark of the family—he graduated at the top of his class. Some bright spark at the auto repair shop forgot to tighten the lugnuts on my wheels after he rotated my tires.
See also: bright, spark

bright spot

A positive occurrence in an otherwise sad or negative situation. His granddaughter coming to visit him in the nursing home was always a bright spot in Jim's day.
See also: bright, spot

be as bright as a button

To be intelligent and a quick-thinker. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. Ted's as bright as a button, so he'll find a solution to this problem. Of course Ellen is our valedictorian—she's as bright as a button.
See also: bright, button

be bright and breezy

To be confident and cheerful. I may be bright and breezy now, but I often felt melancholy as a teenager.
See also: and, breezy, bright

be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed

To be energetic and enthusiastic. After that nap, I am bright-eyed and bushy-tailed! As usual, the new interns are bright-eyed and bushy-tailed—just watching them is exhausting.
See also: and

bright and breezy

cheery and alert. You look all bright and breezy this morning. Bright and breezy people on a gloomy day like this make me sick.
See also: and, breezy, bright

bright and early

very early in the morning or the workday. Yes, I'll be there bright and early. I want to see you here on time tomorrow, bright and early, or you're fired!
See also: and, bright, early

*bright as a button

intelligent; quick-minded. (Usually used to describe children. *Also: as ~.) Why, Mrs. Green, your little girl is as bright as a button. You can't fool Jane. She may be only six years old, but she's bright as a button.
See also: bright, button

*bright as a new pin

bright and clean; shiny. (*Also: as ~.) After Joe cleaned the house, it was as bright as a new pin. My kitchen floor is bright as a new pin since I started using this new floor wax.
See also: bright, new, pin

*bright idea

a clever thought or new idea. (*Typically: have ~; get ~; give someone ~.) Now and then I get a bright idea. John hardly ever gets a bright idea.
See also: bright, idea

bright-eyed and bushy-tailed

Fig. awake and alert. (Often used ironically, as in the first example. The idea is that one is like a frisky animal, such as a squirrel.) Jill: Hi, Jane! How are you on this beautiful morning? Jane: Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, just as you might expect, since I've only had three hours of sleep. Despite the early hour, Dennis was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.
See also: and

look on the bright side

Fig. consider the positive aspects of a negative situation. Look on the bright side. Things could have been much worse than they are.
See also: bright, look, on, side

on the bright side

Fig. [ignoring the bad for a moment] considering the positive aspects of a situation. (See also look on the bright side.) On the bright side, the car you wrecked was covered by insurance.
See also: bright, on, side

one's future looks bright.

Fig. One has a promising future. Tom's future looks bright and he will do well if he keeps working hard.
See also: bright, future, look

bright and early

very early in the morning You'll have to be at the airport bright and early to make that flight.
See also: and, bright, early

the bright side

also a bright side
the good parts or features of a mostly unpleasant situation There's a bright side to this – at least you can learn from your mistake.
Usage notes: often used in the form look on the bright side: They tried to look on the bright side when their flight was rerouted to another city.
See also: bright, side

a bright spark

  (British & Australian)
an intelligent person
Usage notes: This phrase is often used humorously to mean the opposite.
Some bright spark was clearing up and threw my invitation away.
See also: bright, spark

a bright spot

a pleasant or successful event or period of time when most other things are unpleasant or not successful (often + in ) The only bright spot in Liverpool's disastrous performance was a stunning goal in the second half.
See also: bright, spot

be as bright as a button

  (British & Australian)
to be intelligent and able to think quickly She was bright as a button - always asking questions and quick to help.
See also: bright, button

be bright and breezy

to be happy and confident I get a bit depressed at times, whereas Gill's always bright and breezy.
See also: and, breezy, bright

bright and early

very early in the morning You're up bright and early.
See also: and, bright, early

the bright lights

exciting and attractive people and places in big cities I went in search of the bright lights, but all I found was poverty and loneliness.
See look on the bright side
See also: bright, lights

be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed

  (humorous)
to be full of energy and eager to do things She was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed the next morning, despite having been up half the night.
See also: and

look on the bright side

to try to see something good in a bad situation Look on the bright side. The accident insurance might pay for a new car.
See also: bright, look, on, side

bright and early

Early in the morning, at dawn, as in It's a long trip, so we'll have to start out bright and early. The bright here presumably alludes to the brilliance of the dawning sun, which has long been noted by poets. [Early 1800s]
See also: and, bright, early

bright-eyed and bushy-tailed

Eager and alert, as in Here is my new kindergarten class, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. The allusion here is to the appearance of a squirrel, which with its beady eyes and bushy tail looks ready for anything. [1930s]
See also: and

bright idea

A clever thought or plan. For example, John had a bright idea for saving space-we would each have a terminal but share the printer . This term uses bright in the sense of "intelligent" or "quick-witted" and may be employed either straightforwardly, as in the example above, or ironically, as in Jumping in the pool with your clothes on-that was some bright idea. [Late 1800s]
See also: bright, idea

bright side

A favorable or hopeful aspect, as in Bob is inclined to look on the bright side of everything. This idiom uses bright in the sense of "lit up with gladness or hope." [First half of 1800s] Also see glass is half full.
See also: bright, side

bright-eyed and bushy-tailed

mod. alert and ready to do something; as alert and as active as a squirrel. You look all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed this morning.
See also: and

brights

n. the eyes. (From bright eyes.) Don’t you close your brights and look bored when I’m talking to you!
See also: bright
References in periodicals archive ?
A Warwick spokesman said: 'This is our first year and we decided to send our three brightest pupils to America to kick-start what we hope will become an exchange scheme.
They see the profession as suffering from a"brain drain" as the best and brightest of society are seeking careers in professions other than teaching (Labaree 1996 and 1999; McNergeny and Herbert, 1997).
War in a Time of Peace is organized much like The Best and The Brightest, with personality profiles interspersed throughout as the author bounces between the developing scene in the Balkans and the political and military situations at home.
The selection, recognition and awarding of Chicago's 101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For[TM] allows businesses to showcase their best practices and demonstrate why each of them would be an ideal place for employees to work.
The NABR's Best and Brightest Companies to Work For(TM) competition identifies and honors companies that excel at employee relations, use innovation to motivate employees, implement creative compensation programs as well as other attributes.
And why are those charged with overseeing city workers -- presumably the best and the brightest among the best and the brightest -- doing such a poor job of managing their workplaces?
In this article, we'll help you develop strategies to lure the best and brightest job candidates in this new and booming economy.
FOUR of the brightest objects in the night sky come together tomorrow to stage a dramatic celestial spectacle which will not be repeated for 20 years.
On behalf of the building owners, I am thrilled be a part of this vital civic endeavor to restore a piece of New York history and give a whole new generation the chance to experience this rich landmark," said Jeff Gural: "The generosity of Janice Levin and Karen Cohen has restored one of the brightest lights on Broadway to its original splendor and its rightful place on the New York City skyline.
Britain's brightest children could be taught over the Internet by Nobel Prize-winning academics, MPs recommended yesterday.
Another cool comet is coming our way, just 11 months after Comet Hyakutake, the brightest comet to light up our skies in years, wowed observes last spring.
When Michael Lewis describes the corrupt lunacy at Finley, Kumble, he reminds us that we cannot continue to countenance the diversion of more of our best and brightest into the morally marginal or positively harmful activities that constitute the principal pursuits of our major law firms any more than we could continue to accept the disastrous follies that another legion of the best and brightest committed on Wall Street during the eighties.
Headspring Honored with "Best and Brightest Companies to Work For[TM]" Award by the National Association for Business Resources (NABR) for Its Positive Impact on the Community and Its Employees
The nation's largest independent specialty pharmacy has been selected as one of Michigan's Best and Brightest in Wellness for the third year in a row.
SKY-watchers in the North-East are in for an unexpected treat, with the sudden appearance of the brightest comet in decades.