huff and puff

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huff and puff

1. To struggle or exert oneself physically. We huffed and puffed, but we did finally manage to get the couch up the steps.
2. To breathe very heavily or laboriously. Running to catch the bus has left me huffing and puffing. You really should quit smoking—look at how you're huffing and puffing after a single flight of stairs!
3. To make exaggerated, pointless threats. A: "Are we in trouble?" B: "No, just let him huff and puff until he's done—he'll forget all about it by tomorrow."
See also: and, huff, puff

huff and puff

Fig. to breathe very hard; to pant as one exerts effort. John came up the stairs huffing and puffing. He huffed and puffed and finally got up the steep hill.
See also: and, huff, puff

huff and puff

Make noisy, empty threats; bluster. For example, You can huff and puff about storm warnings all you like, but we'll believe it when we see it . This expression uses two words of 16th-century origin, huff, meaning "to emit puffs of breath in anger," and puff, meaning "to blow in short gusts," and figuratively, "to inflate" or "make conceited." They were combined in the familiar nursery tale, "The Three Little Pigs," where the wicked wolf warns, "I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house down"; rhyme has helped these idioms survive.
See also: and, huff, puff

huff and puff

1 breathe heavily with exhaustion. 2 express your annoyance in an obvious or threatening way.
See also: and, huff, puff

ˌhuff and ˈpuff


1 breathe heavily while making a great physical effort: They huffed and puffed as they carried the sofa upstairs.
2 make it obvious that you are annoyed about something without doing anything to change the situation: After much huffing and puffing, he agreed to help.
See also: and, huff, puff
References in periodicals archive ?
But at least I feel a little bit better about our last two performances because they were team performances and we didn't just play for 45 minutes, or show up when we were 2-0 down and start huffing and puffing.
True most Arab women's hubby's spend the night away, huffing and puffing on one form of tobacco or another, but heaven forbid their beloved actress be a smoker
Summary: Gullane: After huffing and puffing at the British Open so often in the past, Phil .
The next time Coach makes you do mountain-climbers, try to slow down your breathing instead of huffing and puffing (inhaling and exhaling for four counts is a good rule of thumb).
They probably think there is just lots of huffing and puffing.
After much huffing and puffing about the bus service and a public meeting (where at least one of the three operators were sufficiently impressed by our Lib-Dem councillors that they bothered to turn up) nothing has or will happen.
It puts the huffing and puffing about cannabis classification into perspective.
Counters Gisela: "I found it quite funny the way he came storming up to me, huffing and puffing about me being measured up.
By 7pm on Monday only four express tills remained in operation and a queue soon developed that snaked right around the back of the shop, leaving a couple of dozen punters huffing and puffing.
I try jogging from time to time, but within five minutes I'm huffing and puffing while everybody else is sprinting away.
There will be the usual FIFA inquiry, lots of huffing and puffing, then little, if any, action.
When he was a 6-foot-4, 290-pound offensive lineman at California Institute of Technology in the 1970s, trying to avoid passing out from sucking in too much Pasadena smog during two-a-day practices, he often mulled over basic principles such as how bodies in motion were supposed to remain in motion even while huffing and puffing to stay upright.
But what a mish-mash the whole thing turned out to be, from the unfit London bobbies who were noticeably huffing and puffing as they tried to keep up with the torch carriers to the awful sight of James Brown cavorting in his spangly red suit with Will Young.
Amid all the huffing and puffing about Birmingham's 'culture' status, events such as these, often unsung, do help the cause.