catch at (a) straw(s)

(redirected from catch at straw)

catch at (a) straw(s)

To make a desperate attempt to salvage a bad situation. It's almost sad to watch how poorly that candidate is doing in the debate. He keeps bringing up his previous successes in every answer, but clearly he's catching at straws. A: "But what about all those times I took the trash out when you hadn't even asked me to?" B: "That has nothing to do with why you're in trouble now, so stop catching at a straw."
See also: catch
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
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References in classic literature ?
What could possess me to make such a request of such a man I cannot tell; but drowning men catch at straws: they had driven me desperate between them; I hardly knew what I said.
Men will catch at straws! Was it destiny or some instinct bringing them together?