separate the men from the boys


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separate the men from the boys

To distinguish or separate the experienced, competent, or strong participants from those who are not. We've had some easy games so far in the season, but this next one is going to separate the men from the boys. This is a business that separates the men from the boys—don't get involved unless you have what it takes.
See also: boy, men, separate

sort out the men from the boys

To distinguish or separate the experienced, competent, or strong participants from those who are not. We've had some easy games so far in the season, but this next one is going to sort out the men from the boys. This is a business that sorts out the men from the boys—don't get involved unless you have what it takes.
See also: boy, men, out, sort

separate the men from the boys

 and separate the sheep from the goats
Fig. to separate the competent from those who are less competent. (Not necessarily just about males.) This is the kind of task that separates the men from the boys. Working in a challenging place like this really separates the sheep from the goats.
See also: boy, men, separate

separate the men from the boys

Distinguish between mature, experienced individuals and novices, as in The picket line will separate the men from the boys in the union. The idiom is used without respect to gender. [c. 1930]
See also: boy, men, separate

sort out the men from the boys

or

separate the men from the boys

If a difficult situation or competition sorts out the men from the boys or separates the men from the boys, it tests people and shows who is strong and capable and who is not. This is the game that will sort out the men from the boys. It is absolutely vital to win the replay and get to the final.
See also: boy, men, out, sort

separate (or sort out) the men from the boys

show or prove which people in a group are truly competent, brave, or mature.
1968 House & Garden The Dry Martini…is a drink that will quickly separate the men from the boys and the girls from their principles.
See also: boy, men, separate

sort out/separate the ˌmen from the ˈboys

show or prove who is brave, skilful, etc. and who is not: OK everybody, today we’re going to do a physical fitness test, which will soon sort out the men from the boys!
See also: boy, men, out, separate, sort
References in periodicals archive ?
At over 7,300 yards, it is certainly long enough and is more than likely to separate the men from the boys.
Behan who has now played himself right into contention for a place in mid-week took just 10 minutes to separate the men from the boys.
THIS year's Smash Hits Poll Winners Party looks set to separate the men from the boys and women from divas if the nominations are anything to go by.
He himself exited ingloriously 5 and 3 to Craig Stadler, Lee Westwood packed his bags moaning that the resort course was too easy to separate the men from the boys, and other big-name casualties were Ernie Els, Davis Love III, Hal Sutton and Jim Furyk.
This is the time to separate the men from the boys and it's time to be men.
A sixth-minute Leon Mike strike gave the Dons victory but manager Ebbe Skovdahl knows next week's showdown with Euro rivals Livingston will separate the men from the boys.
In contrast, the out-of-form Westwood has been bleating that the course is not hard enough to separate the men from the boys, while Woods has still to prove himself on a US Open-style lay-out.
We need to roll our sleeves up and this will separate the men from the boys.
THESE are the holes that will separate the men from the boys at the K Club over the next four days.
And it's only adaptability, planning, and the development of flexible skills that really separate the men from the boys in a successful third age.
Let's separate the men from the boys, lets see who really wants the feeling of winning rather than the sick feeling of losing," he added.
No surprises, then, that he has a basket of tricks up his sleeve to separate the men from the boys, or the real women from the weeds at the company HQ in Kirknewton, near Edinburgh.
Q: "How do you separate the men from the boys in a monastery?
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