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a lonely little petunia in an onion patch

One who is out of place among those one finds unpleasant, uncouth, or overly aggressive. Taken from a 1946 song of the same name by Johnny Kimano, Billy Faber, and Maurie Hartmann. I'm feeling really uncomfortable in this rowdy sports bar, like a lonely little petunia in an onion patch.
See also: little, lonely, onion, patch

a lean patch

A period of failure, decline, or poor performance or results. Almost every new business experiences a lean patch at some point or another.
See also: lean, patch

go through a lean patch

To experience or be in the midst of a period of failure, decline, or poor performance or results. Her business has been going through a bit of a lean patch lately. If things don't pick up soon, she might have to close shop. Though the team has gone through a lean patch in recent years, they still have a very devoted fanbase.
See also: lean, patch

have a lean patch

To experience or be in the midst of a period of failure, decline, or poor performance or results. Her business has had a bit of a lean patch lately. if things don't pick up soon, she might have to close shop. Though the team has been having a lean patch in recent years, they still have a very devoted fanbase.
See also: have, lean, patch

a rough patch

A period of trouble, difficulty, or hardship. Almost every new business experiences a rough patch at some point or another.
See also: patch, rough

go through a rough patch

To experience or be in the midst of a period of trouble, difficulty, or hardship. Her business has been going through a bit of a rough patch lately. If things don't pick up soon, she might have to close shop. Our marriage went through a rough patch after Frank lost his job, but now, we love each other more than ever.
See also: patch, rough

have a rough patch

To experience or be in the midst of a period of trouble, difficulty, or hardship. Her business has had a bit of a rough patch lately. If things don't pick up soon, she might have to close shop. We had a rough patch in our marriage after Frank lost his job, but now, we love each other more than ever.
See also: have, patch, rough

tear up the pea patch

obsolete To go on or indulge in a wild outburst, spree, or rampage. (Used largely in relation to sports, especially baseball, where the phrase originated in reference to players running amok and ruining the game.) Primarily heard in US. Another fight has broken out between the two teams. These boys are positively tearing up the pea patch! A few rowdy types entered the bar and tore up the pea patch. They didn't even pay for anything!
See also: patch, pea, tear, up

purple patch

1. A section of writing that is showy and extravagant and often stands out in contrast to the rest of the writing in a piece. I don't want to see a single purple patch in these research papers, class. Focus on communicating the facts!
2. A period marked by much success or good luck. Primarily heard in UK. After falling behind early, the team hit a purple patch and scored three quick goals to tie the game. We had few lean years, but our business is finally in a purple patch now, thank goodness.
See also: patch, purple

patch a quarrel up

Fig. to put an end to a quarrel; to reconcile quarreling parties. Tom and Fred were able to patch their quarrel up. I hope we can patch up this quarrel.
See also: patch, quarrel, up

patch someone up

to give medical care to someone. That cut looks bad, but the doc over there can patch you up. The doc patched up my friend.
See also: patch, up

patch something together (with something)

to use something to repair something hastily or temporarily. I think I can patch the exhaust pipe together with some wire. See if you can patch this engine together well enough to run for a few more hours.
See also: patch, together

patch something up

 
1. Lit. to repair something in a hurry; to make something temporarily serviceable again. Can you patch this up so I can use it again? I'll patch up the hose for you.
2. Fig. to "repair" the damage done by an argument or disagreement. Mr. and Mrs. Smith are trying to patch things up. We patched up our argument, then kissed and made up.
See also: patch, up

patch up something

also patch something up
to fix a relationship Charles said they wanted to patch up any outstanding differences as soon as possible. Early in our marriage, we sometimes argued about money, but we always patched things up.
See also: patch, up

not be a patch on somebody/something

  (British & Australian)
to not be as good as someone or something else It's a reasonably entertaining film but it's not a patch on 'Bladerunner'.
See also: on, patch

patch up

Mend or repair, make whole. For example, He managed to patch up the lawn mower so it's running, or John cut his hand badly, but they patched him up in the emergency room, or Mike and Molly have patched up their differences. This term alludes to mending something by putting patches of material on it. [Second half of 1500s]
See also: patch, up

patch up

v.
1. To mend or fix something that has separated or has holes by using some material to reconnect its parts: I patched up my jeans with that fabric. I bought a sewing kit and patched my jacket up.
2. To cover some hole or gap with some material: She patched up the hole in my jeans. He patched up the rip in the drapes.
3. To resolve some problem or conflict: The delegates must patch up their differences.
See also: patch, up
References in periodicals archive ?
Solid State has been developing game delivery solutions since 2005, and their portfolio includes the leading commercially available download manager, game patcher and game launcher solution.
Join the Llandegai Patchers in the Quilt Cafe too, for a chat, Patchers lunch and refreshments.
Our products include tractor mounted mowing and other vegetation maintenance equipment, excavators, street sweepers, vacuum trucks, snow removal equipment, pothole patchers, agricultural implements and related after-market parts and services.
The patchers came along in the rain, To mend the roadway yet again
on the chest within easy reach, an adjustable/removable armguard, and non-slip shoulder patchers.
Microsoft will be pleased that less users will have unpatched operating systems, but they'll have to come up with a full-proof version of Windows soon before the patchers lose their patience.
When the Bakers write that "the sorority of quiltmakers, fragment weavers, holy patchers, possesses a sacred wisdom that it hands down from generation to generation of those who refuse the center for the ludic and unconfined spaces of the margins" (156), the ludic and unconfined space along the margins becomes carefully controlled to the limited extent that quilting ta kes place on holy ground; there is little space for the ludic at the heart of such a sorority when it comes down to the hand that hands something down and the hand that receives.
Ironically, the Service may have the most experienced cadre of COBOL program patchers around.
CO DOWN WARRENPOINT student planting BuddY Cabbage Patchers Gain experience in a horticultural market garden environment.
Also on display will be textiles by Jane Jackson, quilts and teddy bears by the Felton Patchers, glass by Kate Nicholson, woodwork by James Ormston and ceramics by Lars Voltz.
HOME: Lives in Patchers Croft, Little Heath, Coventry, with mum and dad.