a coin flip

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a coin flip

1. Literally, the act of throwing a coin into the air, with the outcome of something dependent on which side of the coin lands face-up. We figured the fairest way was to do a coin flip to see who should keep Dad's old stamp collection.
2. By extension, a situation in which two outcomes, usually opposites, are equally likely and will be decided by chance. At this point, it's really just a coin flip whether we'll be able to recoup our costs from this project or not.
See also: coin, flip
References in periodicals archive ?
Two police officers were terminated in Roswell, Georgia, on Thursday morning after a video surfaced of them using a coin-flip app to determine whether a speeding driver should be arrested or not. 
They have twice now collaborated on what you might call coin-flip films: movies about dueling, diametrically opposed forces.
For comparison, under the coin-flip model the chance that a two-child family includes one child of each sex is 2 times the chance that the children are two boys.
There will be the pre-game, the commercials, the coin-flip, the broadcasters, the halftime performance by The Who, the post-game, and, oh yeah....
WITH three coin-flip NFL games to choose from on TV tonight, and layers offering a field goal either way on the handicap, spread bettors may be better off looking elsewhere for a punt, writes Simon Milham.
Participants in two reward conditions can obtain the book coupon (the monetary reward) by getting two tails in two coin flips, whereas those in two nonreward conditions have no clear stake in this coin-flip assignment.
The number of hitting streaks that have really happened is significantly much higher than we would expect if long hitting streaks could in fact be predicted using the coin-flip model.
The coin-flip scenario is kind of funky because there are a lot of teams in there, so it would be nice to handle it on our own."
Indeed, to business entities a coin-flip decision would likely be preferable to the time spent waiting for clearance issues.
Abbott's apparent nod to "Scarface" goes beyond the inevitable token coin-flip homage in that, throughout the pic, he clearly means to create an ironic distance from the severely limited consciousness of his hero.
But someone had beaten Mikey senseless, and now it was "a coin-flip" if he lived.
This conjecture is still open, as the present work applies to systems in which the adversary can only alter one local coin-flip for each process that it subverts.
IT'S an 'anytime scorer' coin-flip at Anfield this afternoon - and the head's saying no to Mo.