can't seem to

can't seem to

Apparently unable to or incapable of doing something. I've been over these figures three times, but I just can't seem to get them to add up. He couldn't seem to figure out how to work the machine.
See also: seem

can't seem to

Be apparently unable to, as in No matter how hard I try, I can't seem to concentrate on this book. This phrase gives added emphasis to a negative statement, as in the example. [Late 1800s]
See also: seem
References in periodicals archive ?
For many months now, druggists have been deluged with complaints from customers who can't seem to find Prilosec on the store shelves.
Although O'Reilly's staff has been informed in writing that the SpongeBob controversy is based solely on media spin, the 'No Spin Zone' can't seem to get its facts straight.
We touch, as well, on the secrets to success of business figures such as Donald Trump, how Carlos Ghosn saved Nissan from bankruptcy and why women still can't seem to get into the corner office in the U.
I was happy to see you guys showing love to the West in issue 300 with the article all about Crooked I, but I just can't seem to understand why the real general of West Coast hip-hop is rarely ever mentioned in your mag: Mac Dre (RIP).
I had a doughnut meltdown during rehearsal," confesses Tanner, who also appears in the play as Darren, the show's monstrous director who can't seem to stop playing mind games with his playwright ex, Arthur.
95) provides a funny survey of a dog who can't seem to follow the requirements of his owner, Vic Lee provides a contemporary gathering of modern comments on life in PARDN MY PLANET (0740751298, $10.
The chief roadblock for most companies is that they can't seem to align internal corporate culture change with external culture changes taking place throughout America.
However, the district can't seem to control enrollment, which has dropped by 40,000 in the past decade, rivaling the famous flight to the suburbs in the 1960s and '70s.
Poor Wal-Mart, it just can't seem to catch a break anymore.
Problem is, she can't seem to come up with anything original or notable.
Humor blends with practical, life-tested advice for handling different types of employee issues, from the clueless incompetent to the party-time performer who can't seem to separate work from fun.
I'VE heard of repeat prescriptions and the countless repeats on the TV, but now we are treated to repeat letters in Voice of the North courtesy of Mr Harrison of Ingoe, who like others in this newspaper can't seem to think up anything new with the arguments against wind power.
Some nights we'll execute and play well, and some nights we can't seem to figure it out," Afflalo said.
Kipp and YouGov bring you exclusive insights into the reasons behind why we can't seem to save up or even want to.
Summary: Volatility rises after the RBA rate decision and UK production data crosses the wires; but the market can't seem to maintain momentum.
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