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cut it close
To do or complete something very near to its limit, especially of time. We'll be cutting it close, but we should get there just before the movie starts.
cut one another's throats
Of a group or population of people, to be engaged in ferocious, pernicious competition with one another other. It's a symptom of the society we live in that we're all trained to cut one another's throats just to earn a little bit more money. The majority of the economy is dominated by a few megacorporations, while all the smaller businesses are cutting one another's throats for what little market share is left over.
cut each other's throats
Of a group or population of people, to be engaged in ferocious, pernicious competition with one another. It's a symptom of the society we live in that we're all trained to cut each other's throats just to earn a little bit more money. The majority of the economy is dominated by a few megacorporations, while all the smaller businesses are cutting each other's throats for what little market share is left over.
A remark or comment intended to injure the feelings of others. Savita was ecstatic over her acceptance to law school, but John's cutting remark about her ability to succeed really undermined her confidence.
A point in time in which extreme, drastic, or decisive action is required; a period, usually near the end of an endeavor, when pressure to succeed is most intense; crunch time. The phrase refers to having to cut a nut off or away from a bolt because rust has immobilized it to the point where there's no other way to remove it. He may not be as flashy a player as some of the other star quarterbacks out there, but when it comes to nut-cutting time, there's no one I'd rather have leading my team. It's nut-cutting time now, and the senator is going to have to pull out all of the stops if he's to have any chance of winning this election.
See also: time
cut (one's) comb
To humble someone who is acting arrogant. If he brags about his straight A's one more time, I'm going to remind him how bad his grades were last year. That should cut his comb! I'm really proud of this accomplishment, so stop trying to cut my comb!
cut a dido
To play a mischievous trick. The name possibly refers to Queen Dido, founder of Carthage, who asked the natives for as much land as could be covered by a bull's hide. She then cut the hide into thin strips to gain more land. Billy cut a dido today when he pulled my chair out from under me when I went to sit down.
cut (one's) eyeteeth
To gain experience with something, especially at a young age (when one's teeth would be coming in). One's "eyeteeth" are the canines. Oh, I cut my eyeteeth on those kinds of equations! Give me a challenging problem for a change! Jen may be young, but she cut her eyeteeth at a prestigious journal, so her perspective and expertise will be invaluable to us.
cut (one's) stick
To leave hastily or abruptly. Oh man, once I heard that dog barking, I cut my stick out of there! Did Amanda leave? Boy, she really cut her stick—she didn't even say goodbye to me!
cut (one's) teeth
To gain experience with something, especially at a young age (when one's teeth would be coming in). Oh, I cut my teeth on those kinds of equations! Give me a challenging problem for a change! Jen may be young, but she cut her teeth at a prestigious journal, so her perspective and expertise will be invaluable to us.
cut (one's) wisdom teeth
To reach an age or state of maturity. I think that we should hire an older, more experienced candidate, one who has already cut her wisdom teeth.
cut (someone) loose
To end a relationship with someone, often abruptly. A: "Wait, they fired you?" B: "Yes! They just cut me loose with no explanation!" If he keeps calling me at all hours of the night, I'm going to have to cut him loose, I mean it!
cut the Gordian knot
To solve a very challenging or daunting problem decisively. The phrase likely alludes to Gordius, the king of Phrygia, who tied a knot that an oracle proclaimed would only be cut by the future ruler of Asia. Alexander the Great allegedly cut the Gordian knot in one blow. A: "Wait, Matt already solved that impossible equation?" B: "Yes! I have no idea how he did it, but he sure cut the Gordian knot."
cut the umbilical cord
To strike out on one's own from an overly involved or suffocating relationship, usually between a parent and child. I love my mom, I truly do, but she used to call me five times a day! I had to cut the umbilical cord! Geez Pete, you're 40 years old! It's time to cut the umbilical cord and stop living with your parents!
Fig. the most forward part of a trend; the leading part of a trend. (Alludes to the edge of a sword. See also on the cutting edge. See also on the bleeding edge.) Fred's invention put him on the cutting edge of the computer chip business.
on the cutting edge
Fig. [for someone] to be trendy and very up-to-date; [for something] to be of the latest design. (Akin to on the bleeding edge.) This technology is right on the cutting edge. It's so new, it's not available to the public yet.
on the cutting room floor
not included Some real ballplayers were used in the movie's baseball scenes, but they ended up on the cutting room floor. In the rush to finish this session, legislators left some very important bills on the cutting room floor.
on the cutting edge (of something)also at the cutting edge (of something)
in front of others with what is new Some people on the cutting edge of fashion have one strip of hair dyed one color and the rest another color. University Hospital is at the cutting edge of medical technology.
Usage notes: also used in the form on the edge: This band used to be on the edge, but it's much less exciting these days.
at/on the cutting edge
in the area of a subject or activity where the most recent changes and developments are happening (often + of ) New, young, Italian designers are at the cutting edge of fashion.
cutting edge, at the
Also, on the cutting edge. In the forefront, in a position of greatest advantage or importance. For example, In my youth I was at the cutting edge of medical research, or Our company is on the cutting edge of gene therapy. This metaphoric phrase alludes to the sharp edge of a knife or other cutting tool. [c. 1950]
See also: cutting