blink

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be on the blink

1. slang Of a machine, to be acting strangely or malfunctioning. Our washer is on the blink, so I'm on my way to the laundromat. Mom called the repairman because our TV is on the blink again.
2. slang Of a person, to be drunk. Do you remember last night at the bar at all? You were really on the blink!
See also: blink, on

before (one) can blink

Very quickly or suddenly. I'm not far from your house, so I'll be there before you can blink. Before I could blink, a deer darted out in front of my car, and I had to slam on my brakes.
See also: before, blink, can

blink at (something)

1. Literally, to quickly open and close one's eyes, perhaps several times in succession. I had to blink at the bright sunlight that blinded me when I stepped out of the house.
2. To ignore something, often because it is unpleasant. I've been blinking at the strange issue with my car because I don't have the money to get it repaired right now.
See also: blink

blink back tears

To try to stop oneself from crying. I often have to blink back tears when I listen to a sappy love song on the radio. The poor student was so nervous on stage that she was clearly blinking back tears.
See also: back, blink, tear

blink of an eye

Very quickly; in a very short period of time. Usually used in the phrase "in the blink of an eye." When we got into that car accident, our lives changed in the blink of an eye. Watch the baby closely, she can get into something dangerous in the blink of an eye.
See also: blink, eye, of

blink tears back

To try to stop oneself from crying. I often have to blink tears back when I listen to a sappy love song on the radio. The poor student was so nervous on stage that she was clearly blinking tears back.
See also: back, blink, tear

blink-and-you-miss-it

Of such a brief duration or small size as to be easily missed. Used as a modifier before a noun. I was excited to be in the movie, but it was really just a blink-and-you-miss-it part.

in the blink of an eye

So quickly as to seem almost imperceptible (i.e., in the space of time it takes a person to blink). The high-speed camera reveals how the frog uses its specialized tongue to capture the insect in the blink of an eye. Working on Wall Street, you get used to massive financial changes happening in the blink of an eye.
See also: blink, eye, of

on the blink

1. slang Not working correctly; acting strangely; malfunctioning. Our washer is on the blink, so I'm on my way to the laundromat. Mom called the repairman because our TV is on the blink again.
2. slang Drunk. Do you remember last night at the bar at all? You were really on the blink!
See also: blink, on

on the fritz

Not working correctly; acting strangely; malfunctioning. Our washer is on the fritz, so I'm on my way to the laundromat. Mom called the repairman because our TV is on the fritz again.
See also: fritz, on

without (even) blinking an eye

Without having or displaying any sort of emotional response, especially to that which would normally elicit such a reaction. When we were traveling, Janet used to eat things like crickets and jellyfish without blinking an eye. Be careful—guys like that will kill you without even blinking an eye.
See also: blink, eye, without
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

blink at something

 
1. Lit. to open and close the eyelids quickly, one or more times. I blinked at the bright light and finally had to close my eyes. Don't blink at me while I am trying to take your picture.
2. Fig. to overlook something, such as a mistake. (As if one had blinked one's eyes rather than seeing the error.) I just can't blink at that kind of behavior. We can't blink at what evil you did.
See also: blink

blink one's tears back

Fig. to try to keep from crying. She blinked back her tears and went on. He blinked his tears back and endured the pain.
See also: back, blink, tear

on the fritz

 and on the blink
not operating; not operating correctly. This vacuum cleaner is on the fritz. Let's get it fixed. How long has it been on the blink?
See also: fritz, on
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

on the blink

Also, on the bum or fritz . Malfunctioning, out of order, broken, as in The TV is on the blink again, or You drive-our car's on the bum. The first of these slangy expressions dates from the late 1800s and possibly alludes to an electric light that flickers on and off ("blinks"); the second, from the same period, possibly is derived from bum in the sense of "a contemptible person"; the third, fritz, dating from about 1900, is of unknown origin.
See also: blink, on

on the fritz

see under on the blink.
See also: fritz, on
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

in the blink of an eye

If something happens or is done in the blink of an eye, it happens or is done very quickly. It was all over in the blink of an eye. Note: People sometimes use in the blinking of an eye with the same meaning. Almost in the blinking of an eye, everything we owned had gone for ever.
See also: blink, eye, of

on the blink

BRITISH, INFORMAL
If a piece of machinery is on the blink, it is not working properly. We had to have the washing done at the laundry because our machine was on the blink. Note: The usual American expression is on the fritz.
See also: blink, on

on the fritz

AMERICAN, OLD-FASHIONED
A piece of machinery that is on the fritz is not working properly. My mother's toaster went on the fritz. `They're setting up communications,' Rizzuto said. `But the goddamned mobile command post has gone on the fritz.' Note: The usual British expression is on the blink.
See also: fritz, on
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

in the blink of an eye

very quickly. informal
1995 Daily Mail It also has an unnerving way of flipping over from comedy to tragedy, or from tragedy to comedy, in the blink of an eye.
See also: blink, eye, of

on the blink

(of a machine) not working properly; out of order. informal
See also: blink, on
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

in the blink of an ˈeye

very quickly; in a short time: He was gone in the blink of an eye.
See also: blink, eye, of

on the ˈblink

(informal) (of a machine) not working properly: Can I watch the film at your house? Our TV’s on the blink again.
See also: blink, on

on the ˈfritz

(American English, informal) not working: The TV is on the fritz again.
See also: fritz, on
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

on the blink

1. mod. out of order; ill. (see also on the fritz.) My refrigerator is on the blink again.
2. mod. alcohol intoxicated; on a drinking spree. They all went out and got on the blink.
See also: blink, on

on the fritz

1. mod. not functioning properly. My watch is on the fritz.
2. mod. alcohol intoxicated. She drank till she was totally on the fritz.
See also: fritz, on
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.

in the blink of an eye

Very quickly.
See also: blink, eye, of

on the blink

Out of working order.
See also: blink, on

without blinking an eye

Without showing any reaction.
See also: blink, eye, without
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

on the fritz

Out of commission; broken. No one really knows the origin of this term, which has been used since about 1900. Everyone agrees that Fritz was a derogatory name for a German, but how—or even if—it became equated with disrepair has been forgotten. P. G. Wodehouse used it in Bill the Conqueror (1924): “Everything’s on the fritz nowadays.”
See also: fritz, on
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
A slab of gelatin acts as the eyelid, mechanically sliding over the eye at the same rate as human blinking. Fed by a tear duct, dyed blue, the eyelid spreads artificial tear secretions over the eye to form what is called a tear film.
By comparison, if you can shoot at all, blinking won't hurt your accuracy.
In this experimental study we tested in healthy participants for whether intense and deliberate eye blinking in response to air puffs to the eye reduces subjective annoyance of the air flow but increases the intensity of the EMG response.
Blinking is a reflex, which means we do it without thinking.
"She does try to communicate by blinking but it is very inconsistent.
* When a new ECU is initially installed and the battery switch is first turned on, you'll notice the ECU lights blinking. The ECU is determining what vehicle system it's installed on, like cargo versus wrecker.
'He told me that his father was in hospital after having a heart attack and the only way he could communicate was through blinking,' says Rowlands.
The researchers said this could explain why people do not notice their own blinking, as it gave us an "uninterrupted view of the world".
Researchers say blinking shuts down the parts of the brain which control our vision and awareness of our surroundings.
A: Blinking is an involuntary action (an action that happens automatically) that your body does to protect your eyes.
With the port ID link-light activation feature, drop identification under active conditions is as simple as seeing a blinking light.
Blinking is an automatic reflex that keeps the eyes lubricated and hydrated (moist), explains Byron Demorest, a pediatric ophthalmologist (eye doctor specializing in young people).
You can stop blinking for a while, but sooner or later you just HAVE to blink.
Blinking is a reflex, something our bodies do automatically.
More than a mere physiological function, blinking may serve as a sort of "mental punctuation" that indicates whether you are alert, concentrating, bored, or anxious.