catch/get somebody's/the drift

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catch the drift

To understand the general meaning of some situation or piece of information. Since I don't have time at work to read news articles in full, I usually just read their blurbs online to catch the drift of what's going on in the world. I was so tired that I couldn't focus on the boss's speech during the meeting, but I think I caught the drift of what he was saying.
See also: catch, drift

get the drift

To understand the general meaning of some situation or piece of information. Since I don't have time at work to read news articles in full, I usually just read a daily news recap to get the drift of what's going on in the world. I was so tired that I couldn't focus on the boss's speech during the meeting, but I think I got the drift of what he was saying.
See also: drift, get
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

get someone's drift

Fig. to understand what someone is saying or implying. (Akin to if you get my drift.) I don't want to hear anymore about her or you. Do you get my drift?
See also: drift, get
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

get the drift

Also, catch the drift. Understand the general meaning or purport. For example, I didn't get the drift-do they want to go or not? or Over all the noise he barely managed to catch the drift of their conversation. The noun drift has been used for "purport" since the early 1500s.
See also: drift, get
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.

catch/get somebody’s/the drift

(informal) understand the general meaning of what somebody says or writes: Do you catch my drift?My German isn’t very good, but I got the drift of what he said.He wasn’t the sort of boy you’d introduce to your mother, if you get my drift (= I have not told you all the details, but I am sure you can understand what I mean).
See also: catch, drift, get
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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