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capture lightning in a bottle

To achieve or succeed at doing something that is incredibly difficult, unlikely, and/or elusive. Primarily heard in US. The playwright captured lightning in a bottle with his first play, taking the world by storm and thrusting him into the spotlight of fame. This rookie team, such underdogs in this championship, are trying to capture lightning in a bottle with an upset win over the number one seed.

capture (one's) imagination

To hold one's interest or spark one's creativity. I know it sounds strange, but his talk on the importance of obtuse angles really captured my imagination. That movie captured his imagination so much that it inspired him to become a screenwriter.
See also: capture, imagination

capture someone's imagination

Fig. to intrigue someone; to interest someone in a lasting way; to stimulate someone's imagination. The story of the young wizard has captured the imagination of the world's children.
See also: capture, imagination
References in periodicals archive ?
Profile Sharing -- Offers large departments, groups and teams the ability to import and export individual profiles or groups of profiles for consistent capturing standards throughout an organization.
The PX-AV100U features capturing of video into the MPEG-2/DVD format or MPEG-1/VCD format via a real-time software encoder, as well as software-based conversion of video into the high-quality DivX(R) format.
Mi-Co, the mobile data capture company, provides enterprise software to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the entire process of capturing and using data.
is a consulting and analysis company based on Long Island, NY, specializing in the hardware and software used for capturing images and data from business transactional forms and paper based media.
AutoStore framework is fast becoming the standard for intelligent capturing, processing and routing of content in corporate office environments," said Ali Tehranchi, president and founder of NSi.