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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 ?
The difference is the speed and accuracy with which the data are captured.
With this planned integration, captured documents can be delivered in the XPS file format, a fixed-document format built into the Windows Vista operating system and supported in the 2007 Microsoft Office system.
Contour lets us move from conventional `point-of-view cinematography' to true `volumetric cinematography,' where scenes are captured in the round," Perlman notes.
By combining hydrogen power generation with carbon capture and storage in one integrated project, 90% of the carbon dioxide in the fuel is captured so that it does not enter the atmosphere and a substantial step is made towards tackling the climate change issue.
Captured content is sent to BasWare's software for matching with open purchase orders or contract information.
It allows hospitalists to better concentrate on patient care, while ensuring their billing information will be appropriately captured, validated and communicated to the billing office.
0 with upgrades designed to significantly increase the speed that business information can be digitally captured, processed, and securely routed.