clock is ticking, the

(the) clock is ticking

1. There is only a finite amount of time left. The clock is ticking, so be sure to complete your exams efficiently so you don't have to skip questions. They have a chance to tie the game, but the clock is ticking. I know it is a pessimistic view, but in my mind, the clock is ticking on the human race.
2. Of a woman, there is a limited amount of time in which to be able to conceive a child. I've been very successful in my career and want to see it to its fullest, but I would also love to have kids, and I know my clock is ticking. For women who may want to have children, the clock is always ticking—a concern that men never have to worry about.
See also: clock, ticking

clock is ticking, the

The time (for something to be done) is passing quickly; hurry up. For example, The clock is ticking on that project. This allusion to a stopwatch is often used as an admonition to speed something up. It also is used in more specific form- one's biological clock is ticking-meaning that a woman may soon be too old to bear a child, as in Her biological clock is ticking-she just turned forty.
See also: clock
References in periodicals archive ?
The clock is ticking, the girl is still alive and the listener knows where she is, but the FBI is slowly, painstakingly combing huge amounts of land.