close shave(redirected from close shaves)
1. A narrow escape from or avoidance of a situation, often an unfavorable or dangerous one. It was a close call, but I managed to avoid hitting the deer that ran directly in front of my car.
2. A decision or judgment that is difficult to make due to each possibility being nearly equal in one's consideration. I'm sorry, it really was a close call, but we've decided to go with another candidate for this position.
3. A contest or competition whose winner is not clear due to very close competition or results that are difficult to distinguish. With the two candidates having nearly equal amounts of delegates, this election is going to be a very close call.
A narrow escape from or avoidance of a situation, often an unfavorable or dangerous one. I had a close shave this morning when a tractor trailer unexpectedly swerved into my lane.
a close shaveand a close call
a narrow escape. (See also .) Wow, that was a close shave. I thought the guard would spot us. The speeding car passed only a few inches from us—a real close call.
Also, close shave. Narrow escape, near miss. For example, That skier just missed the tree-what a close call, or That was a close shave, nearly leaving your passport behind. The first phrase dates from the late 1800s and comes from sports, alluding to an official's decision ( call) that could have gone either way. The second, from the early 1800s, alludes to the narrow margin between closely shaved skin and a razor cut. (This latter usage replaced the much earlier equation of a close shave with miserliness, based on the idea that a close shave by a barber meant one would not have to spend money on another shave quite so soon.) Also see too close for comfort.
a close shave
If someone has a close shave, they very nearly have a bad accident or very nearly suffer a defeat. It was a close shave — if I hadn't been paying attention we could both have been flattened. McGregor had a close shave when a 7ft polar bear ran at him while he was filming a documentary about the animals in Canada. Gingrich had a close shave in the 1990 general election.
See close shave
close shaveand close call
n. a narrow escape. The car passed this close to us—a real close call. Man, that was a close call!